Pork belly with celeriac

Iconic chef Ryan Cole of Salsify at the Roundhouse in Camps Bay, Cape Town, shares his tips and favourite pork recipes.

Pork belly with celeriac


  • 1 whole star anise
  • 2 cardamom pods
  • ½ orange, zested
  • 50 g Maldon sea salt
  • 10 g demerara sugar
  • 2 kg pork belly, skin on
  • ½ t Szechuan pepper
  • 50 ml dark soy sauce
  • 50 ml Canadian maple syrup
  • 10 g palm sugar
  • 1 lime, zest and juice
  • 2 medium or one large celeriac


Blend the spices, orange zest, salt and sugar together and rub on pork belly. I like to cure it overnight for 10 to 12 hours, with skin on and bone in for better flavour. To cure means to dry rub with a salt/spice mix. Brush this off and then slow roast open, basting regularly, or sous vise for 12 hours. Remove the bones and press it for 12 to 14 hours. You then have a perfect rectangle – the perfect quantity of fat and protein – to be compressed into a perfect package. In a pot, add Szechuan pepper, soy, Canadian maple, palm sugar and lime, then reduce into a glaze. Glaze the pork belly on every other side other than the crispy side. It’s important to cook and cool the celeriac as fast as possible to keep the integrity of the vegetable. Peel and roast in the oven with pork fat. Finish with apple puree/sauce.