Pork belly with split pea purée, caper & dill pickle dressing

Pork belly with split pea purée, caper & dill pickle dressing

Split peas get overlooked, but they’re cheap and make a great side dish, especially in this recipe from Diana Henry.

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  • Serves6
  • CourseAccompaniment
  • Prepare30 mins
  • Cook3 hrs 30 mins
  • Total time4 hrs
  • Plusovernight soaking

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  • 1.1kg boneless belly of pork (from the meat counter), skin scored at 1cm intervals
  • ¾ x 20g pack Cooks' Ingredients Thyme, leaves only
  • ¾ x 20g pack Cooks' Ingredients Rosemary, leaves only
  • 8 clove/s garlic, crushed
  • 125ml olive oil, plus an extra 1 tbsp

For the split pea purée

  • 250g yellow split peas
  • 50ml rapeseed oil
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 stick celery, diced
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • ¼ x 20g pack Cooks' Ingredients Thyme, leaves only
  • 3 tbsp double cream

For the dressing

  • 2 tbsp Chinese rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar, to taste
  • 2 tbsp capers, rinsed and chopped
  • 145g Vadasz Fresh Pickles Garlic & Dill, drained and chopped
  • ¼ x 20g pack dill, chopped


  1. Put the split peas in a bowl and cover with cold water. Cover and leave overnight.

  2. When ready to prepare the pork, preheat the oven to 140ºC, gas mark 1. Put the thyme and rosemary in a blender with the garlic and 125ml oil, then process until you have a rough purée. Dry the pork belly with kitchen paper and line a roasting tin with a double layer of foil. Put the pork in, skin-side down. Make small incisions all over the meat, then season and rub in the herb paste. Turn the pork over and rub it with the remaining 1 tbsp oil and sprinkle salt over the skin. Put the pork on a rack in the tin and cook for 3 hours.

  3. Meanwhile, make the split pea purée. Heat the oil in a saucepan. Sauté the onion, celery and carrot until the onion is softening. Drain the soaked split peas and add them to the pan along with 1L fresh, cold water and the thyme leaves. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for 2 hours 15 minutes to 2 hours 30 minutes, or until the peas are soft enough to purée. You want to end up with a thick purée, not a soup, so if there is lots of liquid left, boil to reduce before blending. Season well, add the cream, then purée the mixture in a blender. Put it back in the saucepan so you can heat it later.

  4. For the dressing, stir together the vinegars and sugar in a medium bowl until the sugar has dissolved. Stir in the capers, pickles and dill, then set aside until needed.

  5. Turn the oven temperature up to 230ºC, gas mark 8. Roast the pork for 15-30 minutes more, or until a good crackling forms. Keep an eye on it – you don’t want it to burn. Thoroughly reheat the split pea purée and put into a warm bowl. Carve the pork into slices and serve with the purée and steamed green beans, if liked. Offer the dressing in a bowl on the side.


Typical values per serving when made using specific products in recipe


2,851kJ/ 686kcals



Saturated Fat












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