Leeds restaurants: A crowd-pleasing glazed belly pork and apple recipe from the chef patron at The Owl

The chef patron at The Owl has shared his recipe for glazed belly pork with mushroom caramel, granny smith apple, apple butter sauce and hen of wood mushrooms.

By Abbey Maclure
Sunday, 16th January 2022, 4:45 pm

Mark Owens opened Kirkgate Market's first ever pub with Liz Cottam in 2019 and caught up with the YEP as it prepares to announce a new home.

His crowd-pleasing dish serves eight portions and is the perfect way to impress at a dinner party. Watch the video tutorial above and follow along at home.

Gloucester old spot belly pork

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The Owl chef patron Mark Owens (Photo: James Hardisty)

Ingredients: 1/2 belly pork (bones removed flat); 50g salt; 50g mustard; 1litre apple juice; 2 star anise; 1tsp mixed spice

1. Brush the flesh of belly with mustard, then sprinkle the salt and mixed spice on the mustard. Place the belly pork in a roast pan with apple juice and mixed spice.

2.Place baking paper on top and secure tightly.

3. Place in oven at 140C for three hours. Remove from oven and press flat with a similar size roasting pan and about five kilos of weight. Refrigerate and this will be ready the next day.

Mark's glazed belly pork with mushroom caramel, granny smith apple, apple butter sauce and hen of wood mushrooms (Photo: James Hardisty)

4. Take the meat out the tray and keep the pan juices aside for the sauce. Trim the skin and cut in 5cm by 12cm pieces.

Prepare the mushroom caramel

Part one: 200g water; 40g dried mushrooms; 25g black garlic, peeled.

Part two: 100g sugar; 50g cream; salt; 3g veg gel or agar.

Part three: 50g mushroom stock; 2g truffle oil; 20g sherry vinegar.

1. Place the ingredients from part one in a pan and cover with cling film. Bring up to boil and take off the stove when it starts boiling. Leave this to infuse for 10 minutes. Pass the mushroom mix through a sieve, keeping everything. Make sure the mushroom/garlic mix is separate from the mushroom stock.

2. In a pan add the sugar and make an amber caramel. Next add cream and whisk until it comes together. Next add the mushroom/garlic mix, salt and veg gel and boil for 2 minutes.

3. Put the mix in a bowl and cool for 45mins.

4. Blend the mushroom base and rest of ingredients from part 3 until smooth. Keep at room temperature to serve.

Prepare the hen of the wood mushrooms

Ingredients: 300g hen of the wood (quarter, left large); 50g butter; sprig of thyme; 25g balsamic vinegar; oil; salt

Method: See finishing

Prepare the apple butter sauce

Ingredients: 1 granny smith apple; 1 lemon; 200g butter (cold and diced in cm pieces); stock from pork belly; 50g apple juice.


1. Peel and dice apple to 1/2 cm, place in bowl and squeeze all the lemon juice over the apple and mix

2. In a pan place the juice from pork and apple juice and bring to the boil. Pass through muslin or a coffee filter to make clear. Return to the pan and reduce this by 2/3.

3. Take off the heat and whisk in cold butter, check seasoning and add the diced apple. Leave somewhere warm.


1. In a pan, place the pork fat side down, with oil and season. Cook for 2 mins till the fat is golden.

2. Add the thyme and mushroom in to pan, with the large surfaced side of the mushroom down and caramelise.

3. Flip the pork and mushroom. Next add the thyme and butter. For the next 2 minutes, pour the butter over the mushroom and pork, this is called basting.

4. Remove the pork from the pan and keep somewhere warm. Add the balsamic to pan and glaze the mushrooms.

5. Place pork and mushroom on a draining tray with some kitchen paper to absorb the excessive fat. Check seasoning and plate up.