Surviving a Cocktail Party | Pork Belly and Watermelon Skewers

pork1The other day I found myself googling “how to hold a drink with one hand and eat hors d’oeuvres with the other hand at a cocktail party.” The results of my search were not very fruitful, aside from watching this video and learning that I could catch a football with one hand while holding both my drink and my food with the other hand. But, I digress. Cocktail parties can be a lot of fun. Putting on a nice outfit, having a few alcoholic beverages, trying a variety of finger foods and schmoozing with the other attendees. What could possibly go wrong?

For one thing, it can get overwhelming. As soon as you walk into the event space, there are too many things happening simultaneously. If you’re anything like me (human, two hands, one large appetite), you will push the limits of your hand flexibility to eat, drink and greet those around you.

Things start to go awry as soon as the food starts to circulate around you. You stay optimistic and believe in yourself and your ability to juggle. You’re in the middle of eating a crostini and an acquaintance comes up to say hello. You mouth is full, half eaten crostini in one hand, glass of wine in the other and all you can manage to do it let out an acknowledging grunt. Alternatively, you are standing around trying the multiple dishes being passed around in your vicinity and you feel yourself losing your grip. You close your eyes and hope that you can block out what’s about to happen. A few seconds later you open them up to find yourself and the angry gentleman across you covered in red sauce. Party over.

We here at Packnwood recognize the risks involved in enjoying yourself to the fullest at a cocktail party. In order to ensure that people who attend events are well fed and presented dishes in the most appealing way possible, we’ve introduced our bamboo skewers and bamboo picks collection. Our wide range of skewers, the widest on the market, serve as a canvas to create any culinary creation that you please. Skewers can be versatile, they are easy to distribute and diners end up with clean hands and clean consciences.

For our featured pork belly and watermelon skewers, we a variety of skewers including the The Heart” Bamboo Pick with natural ball, “The Heart” Bamboo Pick with Red Ball and the “Joyo Rond” Black Bamboo Skewer with Side Twist among others. You can find the entire skewer collection here. Let us know which dishes you enjoy on a skewer in the comments!

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Pork Belly and Watermelon Skewers

Makes 10 skewers 

  • 2 lb. boneless pork belly
  • 2 Tbsp. canola oil
  • 2 cups watermelon (cut into small cubes)
  • ½ bunch scallions, thinly sliced
  • ½ bunch cilantro, chopped

For the marinade:

  • 2 garlic cloves,
  • 2 chilies
  • 2 inch piece of ginger, peeled
  • ½ bunch scallion
  • ½ bunch cilantro
  • 2 Tbsp. sesame oil
  • 3/4C brown sugar
  • 1/2 C rice vinegar
  • 1/2C fish sauce
  • 1/4C soy sauce
  • 3/4C chicken stock or water

 

  1. To make the marinade, put the garlic, chili, ginger, scallions, cilantro and sesame oil in a food processor and pulse until the ingredients turn into a paste. Add the rest of the ingredients and pulse until everything is fully combined.
  2. Using a knife, score the pork belly skin. Place in a bowl and fully cover with the marinade. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate in the fridge for at least 4 hours or overnights.
  3. Preheat the oven to 320 F. Remove the pork from the marinade and return the bowl with the marinade to the fridge. Drain the pork belly on paper towels. Heat the canola oil in a pan and brown the pork belly evenly. Place the pork in a baking dish and cover with the remaining marinade. Cover with tin foil and braise until the pork is tender (2-2 ½ hours).
  4. Remove the pork from the oven and take out of the baking dish. Line a tray with plastic wrap, place the pork belly on the tray and cover with plastic wrap and place another tray on top. Weigh down the pork with several heavy dishes. Put in the fridge and leave to chill overnight. Straight the remaining marinade and refrigerate for later.
  5. Take the pork out of the fridge and remove the skin. Cut the pork into small cubes (equal in size to the watermelon). Alternating the pork and the watermelon, place the cubes on each skewer (2-3 pieces per skewer).
  6. Heat up a grill or grill pan. Warm up the reserved marinade in a saucepan. Brush the skewers with the marinade and place on the hot grill or grill pan. Rotate the skewers frequently, brushing with marinade until the skewers and caramelized (5-10 minutes). Garnish with scallions and cilantro leaves.

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