Barry’s porchetta

Serves: 6
Course: Dinner
Cooking Time: 1 hr 5 mins
Prep Time: 30 mins
  • 1 x 3kg piece of pork loin with the belly still attached (tell your butcher you’re making porchetta and they’ll know exactly what you need)
  • 200g butter
  • 2 large white onions, finely diced
  • 2 large fennel bulbs, thinly sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tbsp toasted fennel seeds
  • Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 150ml white wine
  • 150g fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 20 fresh sage leaves
  • Zest of two lemons

1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Add the onions, fennel and garlic along with the toasted fennel seeds. Season lightly with salt and sweat down until the onion and fennel are softened but not coloured.

2. Throw in your wine and simmer the whole lot for 5 minutes. Season again with salt and pepper.

3. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the parsley, sage and lemon zest. Leave to cool, then store in the fridge until you’re ready to use.

4. To cook the porchetta, preheat the oven to 180°C.

5. Roll the porchetta and tie it securely. Place on a baking tray and put tin foil at both sides of the porchetta to keep the stuffing in. Roast in the oven for 40 minutes, basting it halfway through.

6. Turn the oven up to 220°C and roast for 25 minutes more, basting it again when that time is about halfway up.

7. Allow to rest before carving into slices and either eating it as is or in a sandwich. Spoon over the juices from the roasting tray after carving or serve in a small dish on the side.

Chef’s tip

You can make the stuffing at home and bring it to your butcher and ask them to roll and tie the porchetta for you. Just make sure they weigh the meat before the mix goes in.

And for Mains by Gaz Smith and Rick Higgins is published by Nine Bean Rows (€30)