Stir-fried pork belly with chillies and sugar snap peas

Spicy stir-fried pork belly with Thai basil and sugar snap peas.
Spicy stir-fried pork belly with Thai basil and sugar snap peas. Photo: William Meppem

In this rich stir-fry, the combination of the intensity of the sauce, the anise-tinged Thai basil and a properly raised piece of pork belly is something else.


400g rindless pork belly

2 tbsp jasmine rice

50ml grapeseed oil or other neutral oil

½ white onion, sliced into half-moons

3 garlic cloves, sliced

3 bird's eye chillies, sliced into rings

1 long green chilli, sliced into rings

2 celery stalks, finely sliced

12 sugar snap peas

½ bunch Thai basil, leaves picked

juice of 1 lime

For the sauce

2½ tbsp oyster sauce

2 tbsp light soy sauce

1½ tbsp fish sauce

1½ tsp white peppercorns, lightly crushed

2 pinches salt flakes

3 tsp white sugar


1. Slice the pork lengthways into 5mm thick strips, then cut each strip into four pieces across.

2. Toast the rice for 6-8 minutes in a dry pan over a medium heat, tossing constantly until evenly golden. Cool the rice before grinding to a rough powder with a mortar and pestle.

3. Combine the sauce ingredients in a small bowl.

4. Preheat the wok for about 4 minutes over a high heat, then add oil, followed by the pork pieces spread out in one layer. Cook for 3 minutes undisturbed, then stir and cook for another 3 minutes. Remove the pork from the wok and place the wok back over the heat.

5. Add the onion, garlic and chillies to the wok and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add the celery and stir-fry for a further 2 minutes, then return the pork belly to the wok and stir through. Add the sugar snaps and sauce mixture. Allow it to bubble along for about 40 seconds, then toss through the Thai basil.

6. Tip onto a serving plate, squeeze over the lime juice and scatter over the ground rice. Serve with steamed rice.