|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Servings: 8 to 10|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 79g||102%|
|Saturated Fat 27g||136%|
|Total Carbohydrate 7g||3%|
|Dietary Fiber 1g||5%|
|Total Sugars 1g|
|Vitamin C 4mg||20%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
Porchetta (pronounced "pore-KET-ah" or "pore-KET-tah") is a famous Italian dish. It's made of stuffed boneless and butterflied pork shoulder that is wrapped and roasted in pork belly, which crisps up and releases delicious juices when the porchetta is sliced. It's relatively easy to make, and has a mouthwatering fennel, onion, and garlic filling. Best of all, this dish looks wonderful on the dinner table for holidays and special occasions.
This porchetta recipe uses pork loin in place of the shoulder since it holds together and makes slicing easier. It's best to prepare the porchetta the day before (without cooking) and refrigerate it overnight, allowing the pork belly to dry so it's extra crispy when roasted.
If you prefer, ask your butcher to butterfly the pork loin. You can easily do it yourself as well. Simply cut the pork down the center, lengthwise, stopping 1 inch from the opposite side, opening the flap like a book as you cut. The butterflied pork loin should lay flat and be about one inch thick.
Serve the sliced porchetta with roasted fingerling potatoes and a green vegetable, such as green beans or Brussels sprouts.
"The dish may look complicated, but it really is quite easy to pull together if you follow the steps. Be sure to pound the pork thoroughly to make rolling easier. Don’t worry too much if the ground pork-fennel filling seems a bit too spicy, as it’s much milder after roasting. Have fun cooking and sharing this one!" —Colleen Graham
1 (3- to 4-pound) boneless pork loin, butterflied and pounded 1-inch thick
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 medium fennel bulb, preferably with fronds
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
8 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fennel seed
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary
1 pound ground pork
1/2 cup panko breadcrumbs
1 large egg, beaten
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
1 (5-pound) piece skin-on pork belly
Steps to Make It
Gather the ingredients.
Spread out the butterflied loin so it's flat. Season generously with salt and pepper.
Cut off the top of the fennel bulb and save the fuzzy fronds. Quarter the bulb, cut out and discard the core, then slice very thinly. Finely chop the fronds.
Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the sliced fennel, onion, garlic, fennel seeds, pepper flakes, and rosemary. Sauté until lightly browned, about 8 minutes.
Add the ground pork and cook, stirring often, until it is no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Add the reserved fennel fronds. Adjust the seasoning as needed. Transfer to a medium bowl and let cool.
Add the panko, egg, and lemon zest to the cooked pork mixture and fold together until well combined.
Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 350 F.
Lay the pork belly, skin-side down, on a work surface. Use a sharp paring knife to score a cross-hatch pattern into the belly (don't cut all the way through). This enables the extra fat to render and helps the skin crisp.
Turn the belly over, skin-side up. Pierce small slits all over. Use a meat tenderizer to pound the pork belly all over so that it's slightly larger than the butterflied loin.
Lay the flat pork loin on top of the pork belly. Spread the ground pork mixture evenly over the center of pork loin.
Roll the belly and loin together like a jelly roll. Tie with butcher's twine at even intervals to hold it all together.
Liberally season the porchetta with salt and pepper. Set it on a rack in a roasting pan or a rimmed baking sheet.
Roast until the internal temperature reaches 145 F on an instant-read thermometer, 2 to 2 1/2 hours. If the porchetta skin is not yet browned and crisped, increase the oven temperature to 500 F and roast 5 to 10 more minutes, watching closely to avoid burning.
Let the porchetta rest 20 minutes, then carve into slices and serve.
- Thanks to the red pepper, the ground pork mix does have a distinct spiciness. Once the filling is wrapped in the loin and belly, that heat dissipates as it cooks, making the dish a savory delight for even the mildest of palates.
- You can refrigerate the porchetta uncovered overnight. Allow it to come to room temperature for two hours before roasting.
- To reheat leftover porchetta, cook slices in a hot frying pan until warmed through.