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Cherry Bombed a Porchetta

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  • Troutman
    Club Member
    • Aug 2017
    • 6579
    • Republic of Texallence

    • OUTDOOR COOKERS
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    Cherry Bombed a Porchetta

    A Porchetta (pronounced por-ketta) is yet another example of the national cuisine of Italy. Like the Filipino Lechon, it is a whole pig roasted over coals until the meat is done and the skin is crackling crisp. It's traditionally done by de-boned the pig and stuffing it with herbs and fennel bulbs, tying it and roasting it on a spit. Here is an example of an Italian master preparing one using an entire loin section in a restaurant in Italy....

    Italian Porchetta

    When Italian immigrants came to the States, Porchetta morphed into a much smaller and easier preparation, one that is popularized today using pork belly and tenderloin with lots of herb filling. I'd always wanted to try one on the smoker and did so over the weekend. The game plan was to use a belly with skin on and roll a small pork tenderloin into the middle and smoke. Unfortunately the belly was too thick to roll so taking a cue fro Scott Rae on You Tube, I splayed it open along one of the natural seams of the meat so I could get a better tuck and roll.....

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    .....flipping it over to the skin side I got a sharp knife and scored the skin. That accomplishes two things, it provides grooves in which salt can better penetrate (key to the development of the crackling) as well as preventing the skin from bubbling and bursting during the roasting process....

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    ....I then salted both sides thoroughly rubbing it into the skin and the cut grooves. One side note, the scoring should not penetrate the skin down to the meat. Unfortunately I got pretty deep, regardless I saw no ill effect from doing so.

    After dry brining in the refrig over night, the meat was ready to be seasoned and rolled. The skin came out perfect, almost like shoe leather, ensuring the development of that much sought after golden crackling. Next I cut up and mixed a bunch of herbs and garlic for the inside of the roll......

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    ...once that was done I started by rubbing some olive oil over the tenderloins I intended to roll into the middle, seasoned them and rubbed the herb mixture generous all over them. I then took my belly, skin side up, and seasoned only the flap of meat on the outside, keeping the skin dry and free from any seasoning or herbs....

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    ....then flipping it over I start with a generous pork seasoning. The traditional recipe rolls in fennel bulbs but the morphed recipe calls for fennel pollen (made from the fennel blooms). Since fennel pollen is about or more expensive as saffron, I simply took fennel seed, ground it up fine and used that along with the seasoning.....

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    ....now the herb/garlic mix is applied liberally to the entire surface. Although it may seem like a lot, the herbs actaully help neutralize the rich fattiness of the belly......

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    ...it's then simply a matter of placing the tenderloins on the end of the meat and rolling it up into my nice, compact football of meaty deliciousness. To hold it all in place I tied it in two directions with butcher's twine.....

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    I fired up Cherry Bomb (my little red Weber kettle) with a full chimney of charcoal and 3 chunks of apple wood in the SNS. I also hooked up my Fireboard controller and fan. Set the Fireboard to a cook temperature of 325*. Took about 15-20 minutes for the kettle to get up to temp and stabilize. After that the temperature held rock solid the entire cook. It took right at 3 hours for the internal temp of the roast to get to the desired 145*, at which point I pulled it and rested it on my cutting board....

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    Crackling was off the charts amazing. One thing I did discover was the crackling was almost impossible to cut through cleanly, even with my sharpest knife. What I did discover is the the seam made by the twine allowed my knife to cut through with little resistance, so more twine at narrower intervals would have worked to assure even slices. Just a little trick should you choose to attempt this......

    After a brief rest, we carved and served. I made up a little chimicurri out of the left over herbs to serve with the meat. Again it complements and helps neutralize the fatty richness of the belly. All in all this is a pretty impressive presentation for family and guests that's a fun and relatively easy recipe to make. Try it out some time, you'll be amazed at the results !!

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    Arrivederci fellow smokers !!! Troutman is once again out !!!!


  • holehogg
    Club Member
    • Nov 2017
    • 1633
    • Port Elizabeth, South Africa

    #2
    Belly nice cook.

    Comment


    • Troutman
      Troutman commented
      Editing a comment
      You're belly, belly welcome
  • OSB
    OSB
    Club Member
    • Apr 2018
    • 190
    • SacTown

    #3
    That's what I'm taking about!

    Comment

    • 40OAKSMOKE
      Club Member
      • Aug 2017
      • 15
      • East Central Iowa

      #4
      That looks phenomenal! Nice work.....

      Comment

      • Potkettleblack
        Club Member
        • Jun 2016
        • 1819
        • Chicago, IL
        • Grill: Grilla Original / Weber Genesis EP-330
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          Disqus: Le Chef - (something something something)

        #5
        Awesome cook. Near to my heart.

        Comment

        • JakeT
          Club Member
          • Mar 2018
          • 413
          • Northern California
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          #6
          Oh man...that looks awesome. I don't have one, but I bet that'd amazing on a rotisserie over an open fire. DROOLING!! Since you just smoked it, did the crackling have a crunch to it? Or a chew?

          Comment


          • Troutman
            Troutman commented
            Editing a comment
            Completely crunchy, totally awesome
        • JakeT
          Club Member
          • Mar 2018
          • 413
          • Northern California
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          #7
          I had to bookmark this page, I've gotta make this one of these days.

          Comment

          • Henrik
            Founding Member - Moderator Emeritus
            • Jul 2014
            • 3757
            • Stockholm, Sweden

            #8
            What a glorious cook, and writeup! Thanks Troutman, that was a pleasure to read. I trim the skin off, because I'm (personally) not a fan of the crackling, as you say it becomes rock hard. But that's just a personal preference. Either way, porchetta is an amazing dish. Love that cherry color on your kettle.

            Comment


            • Troutman
              Troutman commented
              Editing a comment
              Thanks Henrik for your kind words.
          • W.A.
            Charter Member
            • Sep 2014
            • 723
            • Kingwood, TX
            • Rec Tec Stampede, Pit Barrel Cooker, Weber One Touch Gold 22.5", Kamado Joe Classic

            #9
            Scott Rea Project on youtube- awesome butcher with really great videos. For some reason I sat down one night and watched him make head cheese and was hooked

            Comment


            • Troutman
              Troutman commented
              Editing a comment
              I know I love that guy. He does a de-boned chicken I have on my short list of things to cook. Guy is a really good butcher.
          • DWCowles
            Founding Member
            • Jul 2014
            • 9760
            • Smiths Grove, Ky
            • Hi, my name is Darrell. I'm an OTR truck driver for over 25 years. During my off time I love doing backyard cooks. I have a 48" Lang Deluxe smoker, Rec-Tec pellet smoker,1 Weber Genesis 330, 1 Weber Performer (blue), 2 Weber kettles (1 black and 1 Copper), 1 26" Weber kettle, a WSM, 8 Maverick Redi Chek thermometers, a PartyQ, 2 SnS, Grill Grates, Cast Iron grates, 1 ThermoPop (orange) and 2 ThermoPens (pink and orange) and planning on adding more cooking accessories. Now I have an Anova sous vide, the Dragon blower and 2 Chef alarms from Thermoworks.

            #10
            Looks great!

            Comment

            • Jerod Broussard
              Moderator
              • Jun 2014
              • 9168
              • East Texas
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              #11
              I would love to do something like that, if it was a lot less work.

              If I ever do one I'm going to cut the skin with a box cutter then pour hot oil to crackle it up.

              Comment


              • holehogg
                holehogg commented
                Editing a comment
                Didn't' take you to be on the lazy side.Roll Eyes (Sarcastic)
            • Huskee
              Pit Boss/Manager
              • May 2014
              • 13992
              • central MI, USA
              • Follow me on Instagram, huskeesbarbecue

                Want a free bottle of whiskey? Check out my link to Flaviar.com, you join with it, we both get a $50 bottle free.

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                About me
                Real name: Aaron
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                • Healthcare- Licensed & Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) for MidMichigan Health, a University of Michigan Health System.

              #12
              Incredible!

              Comment

              • FireMan
                Charter Member
                • Jul 2015
                • 6756
                • Bottom of Winnebago

                #13
                So ya think yer some pretty hot stuff with this cherry bombed roast & porcetta thing & tyin it all so nice, then cookin it to photographic perfection, n’ sharp knives and, and, and...............WOW!

                it’s all I got ta say. 🕶

                Comment


                • Troutman
                  Troutman commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I know, it's just your strange way of saying how much you love me !!!
              • BourBonQ
                Club Member
                • Oct 2017
                • 716
                • Lowcountry of South Carolina
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                #14
                Winner, winner, porchetta dinner!

                Comment

                • MeatMonster
                  Club Member
                  • Mar 2017
                  • 606
                  • Ellon, Aberdeenshire
                  • I love beer, BBQ and rugby, just don't make me choose between them!

                    GMG Jim Bowie
                    ProQ Elite Smoker
                    Boomerang 3 Burner Grill

                  #15
                  Mate great post, I raise my tongs in salute!!!!!

                  Comment


                  • Troutman
                    Troutman commented
                    Editing a comment
                    What no single malt in a crystal glass with two ice cubes at least !!

                  • MeatMonster
                    MeatMonster commented
                    Editing a comment
                    The sun wasn't over the yard arm, so just the tongs!

                  • Troutman
                    Troutman commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Oh yea I forgot, your over on the other side of the pond !! But wait, you're ahead of me so drinks are on you

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