Pork belly, my favourite kind of meat! As much as I like it, the actual star of this dish was the fennel and apples which cooked merrily away under the pork belly. I couldn't believe how much I enjoyed them - they flavour was nothing short of sublime!
This recipe I borrowed from a Jamie Oliver book (you can find the recipe online here), and as per usual, as much as he annoys people, this recipe is a winner. Look out for his pork shoulder recipe with balsamic potatoes and onions, it's another great one.
I cooked it basically as per the recipe, and it came out almost perfectly. Make sure you top up the liquid in the pan during the last hour of baking as it does reduce down. I did however prepare the meat a little differently before it went in the oven. I salted and seasoned the belly with fennel as per the recipe after scoring it, however I then refrigerated it, un-covered, for two hours. I then poured boiling water over the belly, which actually bought some of the slits I had cut earlier closer together, as it slightly rendered the fat. I then patted it dry, allowed to air dry for around ten minutes, and then re-seasoned with the salt and fennel powder, before putting it (finally) in the oven.