Pork Belly & Cider Bonbons

Part three in the party nibbles and to be honest I’ve not moved too far from the Shin Beef & Guinness Bonbons recipe here.  But if you were to ask me I’d have to say these were the better. Salty tender Pork, fruity cider and a crunch on the outside – delicious.

I used a little more (in weight) than the beef recipe but this is so I could trim some of the fat off (definitely not all) after the cooking.

As with the beef version – these can be done a few days ahead and frozen before breadcrumbing.  Allow them to defrost before finishing off though.

This was enough to make 8, however they were a bit, well….. me sized.  Could probably easily make 10.

¾ lb pork belly (leave in big chunks)
Seasoned flour
2 Tbsp Olive oil
1 Carrot – diced
1 Leek – sliced
1 Onion – sliced
200ml Aspalls Premier Cru (pick your favourite cider)
200ml Chicken Stock
Salt & Pepper

To coat:
Flour
Beaten Egg
Breadcrumbs (the drier the better)

Oil for deep-frying

Apple Sauce to serve

  • Coat the pork in the seasoned flour
  • In a large , deep pan (which has a lid) heat 1 Tbsp of the oil in a pan over a moderate heat.
  • Brown the pork on all sides
  • Remove pork from pan and reduce heat to low
  • Add the remaining Olive Oil
  • Add carrot, leek and onion
  • Cook on low heat for about 10 mins until veg is softened
  • Add pork back to pan and pour over Cider and stock
  • Put the lid on and turn heat to minimum – cook for 2 hours
  • Remove pork from pan – use a slotted spoon and take care not to drop the meat in the gravy
  • Remove some of the fat (about half) but leave some – fat IS flavour
  • Shred the pork as small as you can and allow to cool slightly
  • Put the pork in a bowl and pour over a couple of Tbsps of the cooking gravy
  • Form the pork into 2-3cm balls and allow to cool in the fridge.  If not preparing immediately they can be frozen at this point.
  • Once cool coat each pork ball in breadcrumbs by covering in flour, dipping in the egg then rolling in the breadcrumbs.  For extra crunch – repeat this step
  • Deep fry each of the bonbons for about 3 mins at 180°c or until golden all over
  • Put enough small blobs of apple sauce on a plate for your bonbons to sit on – stops the blighters rolling about.  Place each bonbon on a blob of apple sauce and pop a cocktail stick in the top.

These are a lovely little savoury bite although the cider makes them a little sweeter than the beef option.  I had intended using pig cheek for this and may yet go back to that – updates to follow if I do.

Don’t forget to strain the veg from the pan and keep the delicious meaty, cidery gravy for another time.

And if you bought a large bottle of cider – guess what? The remaining will go pretty well with these little nibbles.


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