- 8 large garlic cloves, minced
- 11⁄2tbsp rosemary leaves, finely chopped
- 11⁄2tbsp wild fennel or fennel fronds, finely chopped
- 2tbsp sea salt, plus extra to serve
- 1tbsp olive oil
- 3kg pork belly, loin attached, skin on
- bread rolls
You will need to start this recipe a day ahead.
In a small bowl, make a paste with the garlic, rosemary, fennel, salt and olive oil. Score the flesh side of the pork and rub the paste into it with your fingertips. Roll up tightly and tie with kitchen string at 6cm intervals.
Place the rolled porchetta on a wire rack in a roasting tin and set aside in the fridge, uncovered, to rest overnight.
Remove the pork from the fridge and pat dry with kitchen paper if the skin is damp. Allow it to come to room temperature for 1 hour before cooking.
Preheat the oven to 160C/ 320F/Gas 3. Place the porchetta into the oven and cook for 31⁄2 hours. At the end of cooking, turn up the heat as high as your oven will go for about 30 minutes, turning the pork regularly and checking that it doesn’t burn. This ensures that a crackling forms.
Remove from the oven and rest uncovered for at least 30 minutes.
Cut the bread rolls and slice the porchetta. Pile the meat on each roll with pieces of crackling. Sprinkle with sea salt and serve.
Recipe credit: Recipes and photographs taken from Italian Street Food by Paola Bacchia, photography by Paola Bacchia and Ian Summers (Smith Street Books, £25)