* Porchetta *...Slow Roasted with Crispy Crackling Skin... and Pictures
So for a change from the usual straight Roast Pork Roasts I have been making of late….I thought I would liven things up and make something with more than just Kosher Salt and Fresh Cracked Pepper…my basic stand by with Pork Shoulder Picnic, Boston Butt, Fresh Ham or Whole Loin. Whenever I get in a mood to play with roasting meats, it always coincides with what is on sale at my regular supermarket…..and this week Picnic Shoulders were on sale for only $1.04/lb., so I picked up a small (6) pounder with a nice outer skin that was not mangled when butchered...and decided to make Porchetta, the Italian inspired pork roast.
My plan was simple…to bone out the Picnic Shoulder, season with an Herb & Garlic Mixture/Paste, roast low and slow until it hit my target temperature, rest for two hours and finally crisp the skin. My recipe is loosely based on the recipe provided by Porchetta, NYC, which you can see by clicking on the link below.
My noticeable changes to the recipe were to roast at 225* instead of 250*…and not use any wine to baste. Instead of using fresh herbs, I had to settle for dried…and omit the sage, as I did not have any, and instead of fennel pollen, I substituted fennel seed.
Here are the Ingredients:
• Pork Shoulder, Boston Butt or Pork Belly
• Bay Leaves
• Fennel Seed
• Fresh Chopped Garlic
• Kosher Salt
• Fresh Cracked Black Pepper
• Olive Oil
Here were my steps:
• Pork Shoulder boned out, skin left on
• Pierce Pork Skin with a Knife, Awl, Ice Pick, Needle Tenderizer or Dental Instrument. Piercing/Tenderizing the Meat is Optional
• Pulse Chop all Dry Herbs and Fresh Garlic in a Food Processor
• Add Olive Oil to Herb Mixture to Form a Paste
• Spread Herb Mixture on the Meat
• Salt the Skin with Kosher Salt
• Marinate for Up to 24 Hours in Advance
• Remove Roast From Refrigerator Two Hours Prior to Roasting
• Tie the Roast Off Into a Cylindrical Shape
• Re Salt with More Kosher Salt
• Place Onto a Wire Rack or Grill Grate
• Roast @ 450* for 20-30 Minutes to Brown and Sear
• Drop Thermostat Setting to 225*
• Roast to 175*
• Hold Roast in Oven For Two Hours @ 140*
• Remove Roast and Preheat the Oven to 500*
• Return Roast to Oven and Begin Crisping the Pig Skin
• Rotate Roast Every Five Minutes To Check and Crisp Evenly For 20 Minutes Total Time
Prep time: 30 minutes
Roasting and Holding Time: 8 Hours and 20 Minutes.
The total roasting time, including both the browning phase and the slow roast took 6 hours time. I rested for two hours and finished with the Crisping Phase for 20 minutes
My plan was to prepare this Porchetta Roast for slicing and presented on a plate, so my target temperature was 170-175*. If you like to have a Pullable Porchetta Roast, then you should make your target temperature higher at 190* plus. In the end, this method produced a very enjoyable and good finished result for both tender pork and crisp, crackling skin…finally, the leftover sandwich is right up there with the Cubano or Philly Pork and Broccoli Rabe…
My next Porchetta Roast will be a Pork Belly wrapped around Pork Shoulder Meat. Until then…..