To most there is no correlation between Spiderman and pork belly, but my day yesterday revolved around both.
After a gorgeous trip to the east coast on Saturday we stayed closer to home on Sunday and started our day at Evandale Farmer’s Market. I love farmer’s markets, but Evandale is a particualrly good one and draws stall holders and crowds from far afield because of its quailty. Amongst all the lovely fresh local produce stalls, we saw Guy from Mount Gnomon Farm (Harvey met him at a seminar for aspiring producers a few weeks ago) and bought a 1kg slice of rare breed free range Wessex Saddleback pork belly.
We filled our bags with fresh market goodies, weathered a few tantrums from both boys and headed for the gourmet market at Josef Chromy Wines in Relbia. Vines, music, good food and wine is always a good combination and here we saw and heard all of these. Noah spotted the face painters almost as soon as we arrived and decided he must have it done. I was a bit sceptical of this desire as he has always shied away from face painting, but he sat perfectly still while the talented artist painted his face, proudly displayed his mask all day and then cried when it had to be washed off tonight. He was so impressed when I told him I’d include the photo in the blog.
We tried some of the local wines – some were great and some not so great – sampled Christmas brownies (and bought a sample for later), spoke to Rosie, the Hagley garlic lady (Tasmanian Natural Garlic) who we’ve seen quite a few times now, but the highlight for me was a scrumptious Weber-cooked lamb wrap with salad and yogurt from Landfall, a beef and lamb farm only a few kilometres from where we currently live at Dilston.
The boys had had enough by then so we packed our purchases in the car and headed home. I was eager to do something with the pork belly and, having never cooked it before, we asked Guy for advice. He said cook the belly cut slowly at 130 degrees for four hours, then blast for 20 minutes in a hot oven to crisp the skin. I added some of Rosie’s garlic, a red onion, two carrots, two sticks of celery and some thyme to the pan after scoring and seasoning the meat with pepper and pink Himalyan salt. I cooked it for 3 1/2 hours until it was soft and then gave it a hit at 230 degrees for 15 minutes. The results were divine and it went perfectly with the gravy I made from the pan juices, roasted potatoes and sweet potatoes, corn and broccoli (all local). What a way to end a fantastic gourmet weekend.