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Roast Pork Porchetta Style

Roast Pork Porchetta-Style plateRoast Pork Porchetta Style

Porchetta is a traditional Italian pork dish. The fennel, red pepper and other spices add a great depth of flavor to a roast cut.  Our Roast Pork Porchetta Style is one our favorite ways to cook a pork roast.

The recipe calls for a Pork Shoulder/Boston Butt, which adds the right amount of fat to keep the roast moist, tender and a delight for your guests. We have made it without marinating the roast overnight and it has turned out very flavorful. Marinating it just allows more time for the seasonings to sink deeper into the cut. Either way, you are sure to enjoy the flavor, as we do.

Makes 8 servings

2 tablespoons Whole Fennel Seeds
1 tablespoon Coarse Sea Salt
2 teaspoons Black Peppercorns
1 teaspoon Dried Crushed Red Pepper (We have used Crushed Red New Mexico Pepper to provide a different flavor. You might also try other crushed Red Peppers such as Aleppo.)
1 5 1/2- to 6-pound boneless pork shoulder (Boston butt), with fat trimmed, leaving just a thin layer.
6 garlic cloves, minced (You can substitute 2 Tablespoons of dried Granulated Garlic if you don’t have any fresh.)
2 tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive oil plus additional for brushing
1 cup dry white wine (optional if you prefer to make a gravy from the pan juices.)
1/2 cup Low-sodium Chicken Broth

Stir fennel seeds in small skillet over medium heat until a bit darker in color and fragrant, which will be about 2-3 minutes, or until lightly browned. (Watch close since they can burn very fast if not watched.) Transfer seeds to a mortar & pestle and cool. Add salt, peppercorns, and dried crushed red pepper. Crush to medium-fine consistency.

Place pork in 13 x 9 glass baking dish. Rub garlic on the pork, then coat with spice mixture. Loosely cover pork with waxed paper or plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight. (As I said above, we have rubbed the roast and cooked right away when we didn’t have the time to marinate overnight.)

Preheat oven to 450°F. Brush small roasting pan with oil. Place roast, fat side up and coating intact, in center of the pan. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the oil so you don’t disturb the coating. Roast for 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F. Roast pork until very tender and thermometer inserted into center of pork registers 190°F, about 3 to 3 ½ hours, or longer. Transfer the roast to a cutting board. Set the pan aside to make the sauce or gravy. Let the roast rest 15 to 30 minutes.

Pour the pan juices into 2-cup measuring cup. Skim the fat off the cup. Place roasting pan a stove burner, Pour wine and broth into the pan and bring to boil over medium-high heat, deglazing the pan and any browned bits. Boil until wine mixture is reduced to 3/4 cup, about 4 minutes. Add degreased pan juices and whisk to blend. Pour pan sauce into small bowl. The sauce will be on the thin side.

If you prefer to make a gravy as we do, just omit the wine and you’ll still have tasty topping for the roast.

Slice roast and serve with sauce or gravy. The shoulder roast can come apart in chunks as you cut so be sure to use a very sharp knife and cut slowly.

Use any leftovers…if any…for pulled pork sandwiches. Shred the rest of roast, reheat, stack on a roll or bun of your choice, top with warmed BBQ sauce, and add coleslaw if you want it Southern style. Enjoy.  You can also use any leftover roast as filling for tamales, tacos, burritos or pork enchiladas.