Milk-fed Porcelet Porchetta with Crackling
Yield Serves 6-8
- 1 porcelet belly (about 6.5 lbs)
- 2 garlic cloves, grated
- 1 orange, zested
- 1 oz fresh sage finely chopped
- 1 oz fresh thyme stems removed and finely chopped
- ½ oz fresh rosemary stems removed and finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon of fennel pollen or 1 teaspoon of ground fennel seed
- salt, coarse
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- ½ teaspoon Calabrian chili or chili flakes
- vegetable oil
- butcher's twine
- 2 large onions, cut into ¾-inch dice
- 2-3 medium carrots, peeled, cut into ¾-inch dice
- 3 celery stalks, trimmed, cut into ¾-inch dice
- 2 cups of dry white wine
Recipe notesOur exclusive milk-fed porcelet is tender and juicy with thick skin and a fat cap that creates a shatteringly crispy finish. This incomparable pork is ideal for making porchetta, and will draw oohs and ahhs when carving - and eating.
- Remove the rib bones and save. Lay out the pork belly, meat side up. Cut ⅕ of the belly crosswise on the thick end; remove the skin and set aside. Cut the meat pieces in two lengthwise; this part will be added to the center of the belly before rolling.
- Flip belly skin side up and puncture the skin all over with a sharp-tipped knife or pointy meat fork. When the skin is completely covered in shallow punctures turn it over, meat side up. With a sharp knife cut a crosshatch pattern about ⅓-inch deep over the meat.
- In a small bowl, combine orange zest, fresh herbs, garlic, salt, chili flakes, pepper, and fennel.
- Sprinkle the zest and herbs all over the scored meat of the pork belly. Add the two trimmed pieces to the center of the belly and sprinkle the rest of the mixture over them.
- Roll tightly and truss the pork with kitchen twine. Pat the skin dry with a paper towel and season generously with salt. Chill uncovered in the refrigerator, resting on a rack, for at least 12 and up to 24 hours to marinate the meat, while drying out the skin as much as possible.
- Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F and place the chopped vegetables in a roasting pan, add 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, season with salt and pepper and stir. Arrange vegetables to fit under a roasting rack and place the rolled belly on the rack. Spread a little vegetable oil on the belly and rub the skin. Season skin again with salt. Roast for 2 to 3 hours. At about 1 hour mark, add 2 cups of dry white wine to the vegetables (do not pour over the rolled porcelet). Remove from the oven when the internal temperature reads 150 degrees F.
- Turn on the broiler or use the oven at the maximum setting of 500 F. Once the oven reaches temperature, place the porcelet back on the center rack and roast for an additional 10-15 minutes while monitoring constantly. This is a critical step to crisp the skin. Make sure to avoid any burning and turn the belly as needed to get even crisping on all sides.
- Remove from oven and let rest at least 20-30 minutes before cutting. Remove the trussing twine gently. Serve with the roasted vegetables and sides of your choice.