Porchetta

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 16 people

  • 1 suckling pig (about 9kg), boned and left in one piece (see note)
  • 1½ tbsp olive oil
  •  
  • Fennel and herb stuffing
  • 200 gm coarse breadcrumbs from day-old bread (about ½ loaf)
  • 60 gm (¾ cup) finely grated parmesan
  • 125 ml (½ cup) milk, warmed
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) extra-virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tbsp fennel seeds, crushed with a mortar and pestle
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped rosemary
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  •  
  • Iceberg and fennel salad
  • 1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced
  • ½ iceberg lettuce, torn
  • 1 radicchio, thinly sliced
  • 150 gm ricotta salata (see note)
  • Juice of ½ lemon, or to taste
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
01   For fennel and herb stuffing, combine all ingredients in a bowl and season to taste. Set aside.
02   Preheat oven to 200C fan-forced (see note). Lay pork skin-side down on a large chopping board with shoulder and leg ends either side of you and belly directly in front. Trim 5cm off belly sides and discard. Remove legs and forequarters, trim skin from legs and forequarters and discard. Cut leg and forequarter meat into large flat pieces and place over butterflied pork to cover middle section with an even layer of meat. Season to taste, spoon stuffing lengthways along centre. Tuck longest sides in towards stuffing and roll away from you into a log, so that cut side is underneath. Tie at even intervals securely with kitchen string and place on a wire rack in a roasting pan. Season skin liberally with sea salt, rub with oil and roast until skin starts to crackle (25-30 minutes). Reduce oven to 180C fan-forced and cook until porchetta is just cooked through and internal temperature reaches 76C on a meat thermometer (2¼-2½ hours). Set aside to rest for 15 minutes.
03   Meanwhile, for iceberg and fennel salad, combine all ingredients in a bowl and season to taste. Serve with thickly sliced porchetta.
Note Suckling pig will need to be ordered in advance. If you’re boning it yourself, factor in at least 30 minutes more prep time, otherwise ask your butcher to do it for you, leaving it in one whole piece. Ricotta salata is a firm cheese made from salted ricotta, available from Italian and select delicatessens. If your oven is not fan-forced, increase temperature according to manufacturer’s instructions.

Recipe:

BRIGITTE HAFNER

Photography:

CHRIS CHEN

Styling:

GERALDINE MUNOZ

Drinking Suggestion:

NEBBIOLO OR PINOT NOIR SUCH AS KILTYNANE ESTATE PINOT NOIR FROM THE YARRA VALLEY. , suggested by JAMES BROADWAY

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