Home Cooking

Help for problems with slow-cooked porchetta technique


Home Cooking 5

Help for problems with slow-cooked porchetta technique

Dordogne | Mar 5, 2006 03:03 PM

The recipe (fennel/garlic rub, sear, then brief roast at 450, then 8-10 hours at 250)looked wonderful and I followed it closely as I usually do the first time with a new dish, but I ran into some problems:

The pestle didn't break the fennel seeds down much and the resulting rub was very chunky, burned to a char during the searing stage and (undesirably, in my view) kept the fat itself (as distinct from a layer of fennel seed) from browning very well. The pan juices are now very dark and intense, especially after pouring off the fat on top. Any suggestions to mellow out the juices?

The roast was only 4 lbs (recipe calls for 7 lbs), but I left it at 250 for a full 9 hours and it did indeed get progressively more tender but was definitely not meltingly so. I may have left it at 450 a bit longer than 1/2 hou prescribed, hoping the layer of fat would brown a bit before the slow cook phase. Could that have dried it out too much? Would it help to tie the roast to keep fat in more contact with lean and the whole thing more compact?

Reheating. I'd like to replicate the crusty exterior and warm temperature for a friend who's coming for dinner tonight. Suggestions about the best way to reheat so that it won't dry out?

What about other uses for leftovers? What will work
well in a sandwich of porchetta on ciabatta?

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