Smoked Pork Rashers with Fruit Mince BBQ Sauce
The sweet and spicy flavour of fruit mince makes these smoked rashers an absolute festive hit.
- Serves: 6-8 |
- Difficulty: moderate
- Prep Time : 15 mins |
- Cook Time : 1:30 hours
Pork & Dry Rub
2 kg pork belly, boneless and skinless
1 Tbsp (15 ml) sea salt
1 Tbsp (15 ml) smoked paprika
1 tsp (5 ml) garlic powder
1 tsp (5 ml) ground cumin
1 tsp (5 ml) black pepper
a splash of oil for frying
2 garlic cloves, chopped
¾ C (180 ml) fruit mince
½ C (125 ml) tomato sauce
¼ C (60 ml) apple cider vinegar
2 tsp (10 ml) mixed spice
a kettle braai
drip tray, half filled with water
2 big handfuls of smoking chips, soaked in water
3 limes, halved and charred on the grid
Pork & Dry Rub
For the dry rub, add the brown sugar, salt, smoked paprika, garlic powder, cumin and black pepper to a bowl and mix well to combine.
For the barbecue sauce, set a medium sized pot over medium-high heat. Heat a splash of oil, then fry the onions until they soften and begin to brown. Add the garlic and fry for another minute until fragrant. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix to combine. Remove from the heat and blitz with a hand blender. If your sauce is a little too thick, loosen it with a splash of hot water.
Slice the pork belly into thick rashers about 2.5-3 cm, as they will shrink slightly as they cook. Season the rashers well with the dry rub and set aside.
The fire setup for smoking on a kettle braai is called a two-zone indirect fire. It means that the coals are on one side of the braai and the drip tray is on the other side. The meat will go above the drip tray and cook via indirect heat or radiant heat when the lid is on. The smoking chips are placed on the coals during the cooking and the smoke will flow over the meat, imparting flavour.
You don’t need a massive fire for this method of cooking because with the lid on the coal burns slower as you are limiting the oxygen supply. Just make sure that the bottom vents are open and that the vents on the lid are open and placed above the pork, so that the smoke will draw out over it. You will need to check the coals every now and then to top up if needed and to add more smoking chips.
When the coals are grey and glowing, add the first handful of soaked chips. Place the grill back on and arrange the rashers over the drip tray. Close the lid and let the smoke work its magic. Check the fire and chips every 30 minutes but do this quickly so that you don’t lower the temperature too much. At the 1 hour mark, add a handful of charcoal if the fire is running low.
At the 1 ½ hour mark check the rashers by pinching with your fingers. If they still feel a little tight, give them another 20 minutes. Once they feel tender, remove from the heat and wrap in foil or put into a braai container.
Scrape the coals across to create a bed and add a little more if needed to do the final caramelisation of the rashers. Brush the rashers with festive fruit mince barbecue sauce and return them to the heat. Cook for another 5-7 minutes while flipping and basting to create a charry, caramelised crust.
Remove from the heat and let the rashers rest for at least 5 minutes before serving. Serve with charred limes for squeezing over (excellent to cut through the richness) and a sprinkling of chopped chives.