08/07/2015 16:10 BST | Updated 08/07/2016 06:59 BST

Easy Bourbon Belly Recipe


Photo by Holly Bell

We had a Mum's night out on Friday. There were cocktails, kale crisps, wine, koftas, steak, cheese, pie and brownies. Plus gossip and laughter and comparing and contrasting. It was fun. I didn't want it to end. But my inbuilt guilt alarm struck at about midnight. Like some kind of baggier, older Cinders I felt the need to hail cabs, gingerly unlock the door and creep up the creaky stairs. And then I felt this strange low-level sadness sweep over me.

It occurred to me that I'd never know these wonderful women pre-kids. And I wanted to. I wanted to know what it would be like to get ready together at each other's houses, with music blaring and cheap wine in hand. I wanted to swap dresses and nail varnish. I wanted to have a drunken conversation with them in a bar loo about an unsuitable suitor. I wanted to know what they were like before they were some little person's mother. I wanted to not have that internal mum-clock tick tock, tick tock away.

I wonder if it ever stops? I do hope so. I plan to stay out very late in decades to come... later than my sons in fact.

Anyway, enough of all this. Onto the pork recipe.

Lots more recipes like this in my book, Recipes from a Normal Mum, out now... on Amazon, at Waterstones, The Book Depository, WHSmith and many smaller outlets.


  • 6 slices of pork belly
  • 45g malt vinegar
  • 35mls fish sauce
  • 20mls soy sauce
  • 25mls lime juice (fresh or bottled)
  • 100g Dijon mustard
  • 40g tomato purée
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp bourbon whisky (or any whisky frankly)

Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6. Place the pork in a large roasting tray and bake for 30 minutes, turning the pork once. In the meantime mix all the other ingredients together and set aside.

When the thirty minutes is up turn the oven down to 150°C/gas 2, drain away half the fat that's collected in the pan (into a container to be binned, not down the drain) and pour the marinade over the pork belly. Pop back in the oven for an hour, turning the belly slices every 15 minutes. Serve with green salad, white rice, soft tortilla rolls or whatever the hell you fancy. Mac cheese maybe?

P.S. You can use this marinade for ribs too.

Holly blogs at Recipes from a Normal Mum

Her first book is out now, also called Recipes from a Normal Mum