Porchetta [por’ketta], the classic Italian roast of slow-roasted, juicy pork surrounded with crisp, crackling skin, is the perfect centerpiece for a special-occasion meal. This belly-only version is rich with aromatics and herbs and it feeds a crowd. Or, plan on leftovers– including game-changing sandwiches and a riff on a B.LT. that dreams are made of.
1 6-pound boneless, skin-on pork belly
1 oz Italian Street Fair Spice Blend, ground
½ oz Lamb & Pork Seasoning
1 Tbsp kosher salt
1 tsp baking soda
1½ Tbsp garlic, chopped fine
1 ea lemon, zested
¾ cup packed fresh parsley leaves, chopped
Place pork belly skin-side down on a large cutting board. Using a sharp chef’s knife, score flesh diagonally using strokes about 1-inch apart and about ¼-inch deep*. Rotate cutting board 90 degrees and repeat to create a diamond pattern. Flip pork belly over skin-side up and repeat steps on the skin side. (*Score means to cut slits on the surface of the food. If purchasing meat from a butcher, you can ask him/her to score it for you if this part feels out of your league.)
Combine Italian Street Fair blend, Lamb & Pork Seasoning, and kosher salt in a small bowl. Portion roughly one-half of mixture into another small bowl and combine with baking soda and season evenly over pork skin.
Flip over to skin-side down. Season pork flesh with remaining mixture, garlic, lemon zest, and parsley leaves. Use your hands to rub the mixture deeply into the cracks and crevices in the meat.
Starting at the thicker end, roll belly into a tight log and push to top of cutting board, seam-side down. Cut 10 to 12 lengths of kitchen twine long enough to tie around the pork and lay them down vertically in even intervals on the cutting board, about 1-inch apart. Place rolled pork seam-side down on top of the strings. Working from the outermost strings to the center, tie up roast tightly, trimming any excess string. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least overnight and up to three days to cure.
Remove pork from refrigerator and let sit at room temperature 1 hour before roasting. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat to 300°F. Transfer pork to a wire rack set in a rimmed baking sheet and roast for 3 hours. Increase temperature to 400°F and continue roasting for an additional 15 to 30 minutes until skin is crispy and rich brown in color and reads an internal temperature of 180°-185°F.
Transfer porchetta to a cutting board and let rest 20 minutes before slicing. Slice with a serrated knife into 1-inch thick disks and serve.
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