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Apr 8, 2014

Thai-Flavored Pork Belly Skewers

Thai-Flavored Pork Belly Skewers

These Thai-Flavored Pork Belly Skewers are ridiculous. Beyond amazing. Seriously delicious. Happy dance good.

Thai-Flavored Pork Belly Skewers

I am not an expert in grilling and neither is Mr. K. We've always had a charcoal grill, and have recently learned about using a chimney starter. About a year ago, we purchased a gas grill. We are still trying to figure out the manual (give me bread formulas or even Excel pivot tables - just don't ask me to figure out how to use this damn grill). Being the holder of all earthly knowledge is a lot of work.

These pork belly skewers are soooo good. The ingredients in the marinade make the dish. I still can't believe I devoured a skewer full of pork belly the minute it came off of the grill.

Thai-Flavored Pork Belly Skewers

I used the gas grill to make these skewers. While the original recipe calls for about four minutes to make these skewers, it took me about twice that amount of cooking time suggested in the recipe. With grilling, there are a lot of variables, including the weather, so keep a close eye on the meat and go with your instincts. Next time I might double up on the scallions too. 

I am so excited to be a part of the blog tour introducing Grilled to Perfection by two champion pit masters Andy Husbands and Chris Hart. I chose to make these pork belly skewers as part of this tour. Zero regrets here!

This book is loaded with new and wonderful barbecue recipes. There are recipes for hot direct grilling, roasting on the grill, and low and slow grilling. The recipes are adapted for both charcoal and gas. There are lots sauce recipes as well as tons of grilling tips. The grilled corn with miso butter and the lemon and fresh herb grill-roasted leg of lamb recipes are next on my list.

Thai-Flavored Pork Belly Skewers

Posted with permission from Page Street Publishing

We found that grilling these over a low grill helps build a wonderful sticky-crunchy texture. Make sure to flip the skewers over every 30-45 seconds. Soaking the skewers in water helps keep them from burning.

1 cup/240 mL water
1/2 cup/90 g brown sugar
1 stalk lemongrass, thinly sliced
2 pieces star anise
1 two-inch/5 cm cinnamon stick
2 teaspoons/10 mL coriander seeds, toasted and ground
2 teaspoons/10mL red pepper flakes
1/4 cup/60mL soy sauce
2 tablespoons/30 mL fish sauce
2 tablespoons/30 mL white vinegar
1 pound/450g pork belly, skin removed, cut into 1"/2.5 cm-square slices, each 1/4"/6 mm thick
10 scallions, thick white part cut into 1"/2.5cm-pieces

Makes 10 skewers, 4 - 6 appetizer servings

Equipment: Ten 8"/20 cm wooden skewers, soaked in water for at least 4 hours

Cooking Instructions
In a small saucepan over high heat, bring to boil the water, brown sugar, lemongrass, star anise, cinnamon stick, coriander and red pepper flakes. Boil for 30 seconds, then remove from heat and transfer to a bowl. Cover and refrigerate until completely cool, about 2 hours. Add the soy and fish sauces and vinegar. 

Place the pork belly chunks in the marinade for at least 4 and up to 24 hours.

Thread the pork belly and scallion alternately, starting with pork belly (scallion should be perpendicular to the skewers). Each skewer should have 3 pieces of pork and 2 scallions.

Build a low direct fire. Spread an even layer of unlit charcoal in the bottom of the grill. Fill a chimney one-third full with charcoal. Stuff two sheets of newspaper in the bottom of the chimney and light it. When the coals are fully engaged – you should see flames peeking over the top – pour them over the unlit charcoal. If using a gas grill, light the gas and adjust the temperature on both sides to low.

When you can hold your hands over the fire for no more than 8-10 seconds, clean the grill grate. Place the skewers directly over the fire, with the exposed wooden ends pointing the edge of the grill, and grill for 30-45 seconds, until the meat starts to brown. Flip skewers over and repeat. Continue this process for about 4 minutes, until the meat is dark brown, almost black in some areas.

Serve hot, and make sure you get one for yourself. These will not last long.

Disclosure: I received a copy of the book from the publisher. All opinions are my own. 

Would you like to comment?

  1. Holy cow (or pig?), these are stunning! I am not a huge griller but you have me convinced that I need to give it a second chance. These are just gorgeous!

    Amy | Club Narwhal

    1. Thanks Amy. I'm not a huge griller either. I'm going to have to give more of these recipes a shot.

  2. My husband would go crazy for this, he is the griller around here. Love this flavor combination!

    1. Just marinade it for him and set him loose. You'll both love it =)

  3. Bravo bravo bravo! Amazing recipe and beautiful photographs Karen! We LOVE pork belly here (we call it panseta "πανσέτα", just like our neighbors in Italy call their bacon:) )
    Thai glaze is always fantastic. The weather is warming up, so we'll put this recipe to the "test" ASAP:)
    Thank you!

    1. I always so love your Greek point of view on this. So informative. I know you will love this!

  4. Great recipe for BBQ season! Thanks for sharing.

  5. Oh my. This could be my last meal!

  6. This looks AMAZING. Pork belly for the win!

  7. These have my husband's name written all over them - WOW!


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