Porchetta

by Nick Benson

Slow roast pork, stuffed, rolled, crackling... what's not to love?




You'll need

  • olive oil
  • thyme
  • rosemary
  • garlic
  • cherry tomatoes
  • organic, pastured, free range pork belly or shoulder. Skin on.

Here's how

  1. Preheat your grill to a high heat and make space for your porchetta, its a pretty tall guy. Once the porchetta is cooked, take it out of the BBQ and salt the skin again. Put it under the grill and watch intently as the crackling forms. Once formed, remove from the oven and rest for 20 minutes. Slice with a cleaver into 1 inch thick strips and serve with sundried tomatoes, roasted peppers, olive and marinated artichokes. Oh, and apple sauce if you are so inclined.
  2. Take the belly out the fridge and flip over so the skin is down and the meat is up. You are going to need butchers twine here as you are about to roll the pork. Take your stuffing and spoon it into a line at the end of the belly that you start your roll from. Once the stuffing is lined out take your hands and roll the pork as if you were rolling a newspaper. Once rolled, tie it 3-4 times and set it on a stand in a roasting pan. Put it in a blasting BBQ, close the lid and reduce the heat to medium. Check the meat after an hour and half to see if its ready. You'll know if you pierce the side of the roll with a skewer and the fluid runs clear. It usually takes between 1.5-2.5 hours.
  3. The first step of this delicious dish is to prepare a stuffing. I usually wing this bit, the recipe changing based upon what's in my fridge and larder at the time. For the purpose of the recipe, let's prepare one of my favourite stuffings. Sliced the cherry tomatoes in half or quarters depending on their size and set aside in a mixing bowl. Add a few sprigs of thyme and shred the leaves off a sprig of rosemary. crush 4 cloves of garlic and add them to the tomatoes and herbs. Season well with salt and pepper. Add olive oil, toss, cover and set aside to marinate.
  4. Now turn to your pork belly, sit it down on a board with the skin facing up. Score the skin with lines in once direction and salt generously. Sit the belly in the fridge for a hour to let the salt pull the moisture out of the skin. CRACKLING!

About the Author

Nick Benson

Martini, Negroni, 2004 Curly Flat pinot. All eatin', all dancin'. Get me on a stream, catching trout, cooking over a fire for a bunch of people.

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