Standing in line in Montalcino, Italy at an open air market… waiting hungrily for a slice of that whole, deboned, herb rubbed, salty, roasted pig on the butcher’s counter. The one with the perfectly crispy skin.
“Sliced or on a sandwich’ the server asks each patron in Italian as they step up to the counter. ‘Sliced’, I say when it is my turn. He grabs his knife and slices away at the aromatic roast until I tell him to stop. He hands me pork slices, wrapped in butcher paper, and I cannot wait to sit down and dig in for my first taste of porchetta.
So, what exactly is porchetta? It is a dish that originated in central Italy in the province of Rome. It is a whole pig, deboned, arranged in layers of meat and fat and salt and herbs and then roasted to perfection. The skin is crisp, the meat is salty and tastes of herbs like garlic, and thyme and rosemary and fennel. It is pig perfection.
I took inspiration and created the recipe for my ‘Porchetta Bacon’. The dry cure is filled with savory herbs that lend themselves well to the flavor and aroma of this bacon.