Buns with Barbecued Pork Belly and Chilli Jam

The award-winning Spirit House Restaurant and Cooking School is a must visit Sunshine Coast foodie destination. In fact, this acclaimed Yandina restaurant is so popular, the chefs hold daily classes in the purpose built, hands-on cooking school.

If you can't get your tastebuds to the Sunshine Coast Hinterland, then wrap your oven gloves around, Spirit House, The Cookbook. The restaurant's third cookbook is brimming with mouth-watering recipes including Thai favourites and other Asian-fusion dishes. The photography is stunning and will inspire home gourmets to whip up their own sweet, sour, salty and spicy delights.

Buns with barbecued pork belly and chilli jam

These are lovely little treats for a light lunch. If preferred, the pork can be marinated overnight, then barbecued on the day you are serving the dish.


300 g (10½ oz) pork belly, skin off
¼ cup golden shallots (eschallots), diced
1 lemongrass stalk, trimmed outer leaves and chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
½ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon honey
½ tablespoon dark palm sugar
½ tablespoon dark soy
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
6 soft buns or dinner rolls
buttercrunch lettuce, to serve
chilli jam (p. 13), to garnish
corinader (cilantro) leaves, (optional), to garnish


Steam pork over simmering water for 1 hour. This is best done in a bamboo steamer placed over a wok of boiling water. Keep an eye on the water level and top up if needed. Remove from the steamer when cooked and allow to cool.

While pork is steaming, pound shallots, lemongrass, garlic, pepper and salt in a mortar to make a paste. Add the honey, sugar, soy and oil and mix until sugar is combined.

Cut the pork into 6 pieces. Toss pork with marinade paste and set aside for a few hours.

Cook the pork pieces over moderate coals or on a barbecue until slightly charred on the outside and just cooked on the inside.

Slice the buns in half. Warm on the barbecue.

Place lettuce and pork belly on top of the bottom slice of the bun, add a dollop of chilli jam and a few coriander leaves. Close with the top slice and serve

TIP: Lemongrass: to finely slice, peel off the tough outer leaves and only slice the tender bottom part of the stem up to about 15 cm (6 in). If the knife gets harder to use, you have chopped too far up the stem.

Spirit House Cookbook
New Holland Publishers
RRP $49.99 available from all good bookstores or order online