This Italian dish brings together some amazing flavours to pork belly.
5kg/11lb piece of pork belly – boned and trimmed of excess fat
Optional: 1 x pork loin or fillet
25g/1oz coarse salt
1 large onion chopped
2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
2 tbsp fresh rosemary, roughly chopped
2 tbsp bunch fresh sage leaves, roughly chopped
1 tbsp wild fennel or seeds
8 garlic cloves, finely chopped or crushed
8 tbsp breadcrumbs
Large glass of medium or sweet sherry
80 g sultanas
2 tbsp olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
Lay the pork belly skin-side down onto a clean flat surface. Sprinkle the salt and coarsely ground black pepper over it, rubbing them well into the meat with your finger. Leave to rest for ten minutes to enable the salt and pepper to settle well into the meat. While the meat is resting, add the sultanas and sherry to the breadcrumbs and allow to soak.
Next, sprinkle the herbs, fennel seeds and garlic evenly over the meat. Rub these ingredients into the meat. Leave for another ten minutes. While the meat is resting, gently fry the chopped onion until it is soft and a light golden colour. Now, spread the soaked breadcrumbs and sultanas, followed by the cooked onion over the meat.
If using a pork loin, place it against the side of the pork belly nearest to you. Now, carefully roll the meat up width-ways and tie it very tightly with string in the middle of the joint.
Then tie at either end about 1cm/½ inch from the edge and keep tying along the joint until you have used up all the string. The filling should be well wrapped, if any excess filling escapes from the sides, push it in. With your hands, massage one tablespoon of the olive oil all over the joint. Then rub the remaining salt and some more black pepper over it.
Place the Porchetta on your Rotigrill and cook for 10 minutes at a low height to start the crackling. Then raise the joint to normal cooking height and cook for 1 hour 30 minutes. To crisp your crackling finish the joint off at low height for 10 minutes.
At the end of cooking, take the joint off the skewer and place it on a pre-heated carving dish or plate and allow the joint to rest for 15 to 20 minutes. Save any juices that run out of the joint to add to your gravy or sauce.
Carve into thin slices and serve with roasted or sautéed potatoes.
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