Source: Jean-Paul Bourgeois

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PREP TIME

mins

COOK TIME

mins

SERVING SIZE

What You’ll Need

For Pork Belly:
5 pounds raw Prairie Fresh® pork belly 
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon salt
4 cinnamon sticks
20 ounces stout beer
20 ounces apple juice
½ cup molasses 

For the Cookies: 
4½ cups all-purpose flour 
4 teaspoons baking soda
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
1½ cups unsalted butter softened to room temperature (not melted)
1 cup granulated (white) sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2  whole eggs
½ cup unsulphured molasses

Directions

Cooking the pork belly:
Preheat oven to 350 F. Heat vegetable oil in a heavy-bottom pot over medium-high heat. Season pork belly with 1 tablespoon of salt. Brown pork belly on each side in pot. Add cinnamon sticks, beer, apple juice, and molasses. Bring mixture to boil, cover and braise in a preheated oven. Cook time is about 3 hours or until a knife can poke through with slight resistance. Internal temperature should be 145 F. 

Allow to cool in braising liquid overnight, if possible.  After it’s cool, slice pork belly thin with a sharp knife. Reserve pork belly braising liquid to brush on cookies before baking.

To make the cookies:
Preheat oven to 375 F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat; set aside. Whisk together dry flour, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg and salt; set aside. 

Cream together butter and sugars with a stand mixer or hand mixer on medium-high speed until the mixture is light and fluffy and a pale yellow color, about 2 minutes, scraping down the sides occasionally as needed. Mix in the eggs (one at a time) and molasses, and beat on medium-low speed until each is combined. Gradually add in the dry ingredient mixture and beat until it is evenly incorporated.

Transfer the dough to an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until the dough is completely chilled and firm. Roll the dough into small balls, about 1 inch in diameter. Fill a separate small bowl with sugar, and roll each ball in the sugar until completely coated. Place dough balls on the prepared baking sheet. Top each dough ball with sliced/cooked pork belly. Gently press down on the dough ball to adhere the belly to the dough. Brush a small amount of braising liquid on top of cookie. 

Bake for about 8-10 minutes or until the cookies begin to slightly crack on top. (They will crack more while cooling). Remove from the oven and let cool for 4-5 minutes. Then transfer the cookies to wire racks to cool completely. Serve warm and enjoy. Store in a sealed container for up to 4 days or freeze for up to 3 months.