Pork Belly Porchetta
This show-stopper of a dish is well worth the time it takes to make and prepare. Crispy crackling surrounding a tender, slow-cooked meaty middle. We served pork belly porchetta with creamy mashed potato spiced up with Chipotle Mayo and a gloriously garlicky salsa verde which cuts through the rich, fatty meat perfectly. This is what dreams are made of!
We cooked ours on a Big Green Egg ceramic barbecue as part of our exciting collaboration. Check out the other recipe ideas we came up with. You could just as easily do this in the oven though!
Our Chipotle Coleslaw recipe goes amazingly well with this Pork Belly Porchetta.
How to make it
TO MAKE Pork Belly Porchetta
- Toast the fennel seeds and peppercorns in a dry pan for a few minutes until fragrant.
- Tip into a pestle and mortar or food processor with the rosemary leaves, thyme leaves, garlic cloves, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
- Combine to form a smooth paste and add to a mixing bowl along with the olive oil and chipotle paste.
- Toast the pine nuts briefly in a dry pan until golden, then roughly chop. Add this to the bowl with the parsley. Mix well.
- Place the pork skin-side down on a board and spread the spice paste all over the surface of the meat, then roll it up and tie in place with heatproof string as tightly as possible.
- Rub salt all over the surface and put in the fridge overnight, uncovered, to completely dry out.
- Remove from the fridge and leave for about an hour to allow it to come to room temperature, patting the skin with kitchen roll to remove any moisture that remains and rubbing on more salt.
- Preheat the oven to 160°C (325°F, Gas 3).
- Place meat on a rack above a roasting pan filled with plenty of water (to catch the fat and stop it from burning) and roast for 4 hours.
- Ramp up the heat of the oven to 230°C (450°F, Gas 8) and continue to cook for about 20 minutes. The skin will puff up and go and crispy. Take care not to burn it as it will go from deliciously golden to black in no time.
TO MAKE THE SALSA VERDE
- In a pestle and mortar or food processor, make a reasonably smooth paste with the garlic and anchovies.
- Place anchovy/garlic paste into a mixing bowl with the herbs. Add the red wine vinegar, capers and a few good slugs of extra virgin olive oil. Mix well and add more olive oil to bring it to a nice loose consistency.
- Taste to see if it needs any more vinegar before adding extra. Leave aside until ready to serve.
- When you are happy with the pork skin, remove the porchetta and leave it to rest for 20 minutes or so before slicing how you like it (we went thick). To make slicing easier, you could remove the crackling and cut it separately.
- Serve a slice of porchetta with mashed potato and drizzle with salsa verde.
This recipe also works well on a barbecue with a lid so you can control the temperature.