David Olson is a nationally-recognized American Culinary Federation (ACF) Chef, television personality and social network influencer, award-winning recipe developer, livefire grill master, international adventurer-extraordinaire, and the creator behind, "LiveFire Republic." David has an attentive audience of more than two million households weekly via traditional media and event appearances, brand ambassadorship, his blog and various social media channels. He is featured annually in numerous live television segments and radio interviews, while his recipes and creative content continue to be shared across the web and in print publications from sea to shining seaVISIT LIVEFIRE REPUBLIC ON INSTAGRAM
3-4 pounds pork belly, skin removed and trimmed
Head Country Championship Seasoning, Sweet & Spicy
1 tablespoon granulated garlic powder
Kosher salt and fresh ground peppercorn, to taste
4 cups hickory wood smoking chips, soaked in water 1 hour prior to use
1 cup apple juice, plus ¼ cup separated
1 cup water
¼ cup bourbon
¼ cup cider vinegar
1 large pineapple, core removed and sliced into cubes
8-10 metal or wooden skewers, if wooden, soaked in water 1 hour prior to use
Head Country Bar-B-Q Sauce, Hickory Smoke
Fresh parsley, to garnish
2-3 stalks green spring onion, finely sliced, to garnish
Preheat the Smoker:
Ignite charcoal with a chimney starter and prepare smoker to 225°F. Apply soaked hickory wood chips to infuse another level of flavor throughout the cook.
Before smoking, remove pork belly from refrigeration and rest covered on the counter until room temperature throughout. Using a sharp chef's knife, score the pork belly's fatty top in a crosshatch fashion, then liberally apply a rub of olive oil, Head Country Championship Seasoning, garlic powder, and salt and pepper, to taste. Ensure to cover the pork belly on all sides with the rub, especially between the score marks.
Smoking the Pork Belly: Place the pork belly fat-side up into the center of the smoker. Intermittently moisten the pork with a spray consisting of apple cider, water, bourbon and vinegar. Remove the pork from the smoker at an internal temperature of 165°F. Immediately wrap the smoked pork tightly in a double layer of butcher paper or heavy duty tin foil, along with a ¼ cup of apple juice. Return to the smoker, cooking until an internal temperature of 195°F. Remove pork from the heat and rest on counter for 30 minutes.
Grilling the Skewers:
Preheat grill to high heat. Meanwhile, unwrap the resting pork belly and slice into 3/4-1 inch cubes. Skewer the pork along with the pineapple, then brush meat and fruit with Head Country's Hickory Smoke Barbecue Sauce. Place the skewers over direct heat grill grates for 1-2 minutes per side, while brushing one caramelized layer after another of barbecue sauce onto the skewers. Remove the skewers from the grill, brush one final time with barbecue sauce and set aside to cool.
Serve on the skewer or off, family-style. Season additionally with salt and pepper, to taste, then finish with a simple garnish of fresh spring onion, sliced on the diagonal. Pair with a crisp, refreshing summer brew and serve amongst the best of family and friends.