Porchetta. The Italian Way to Love Pork.
by Meaghan O’Connor, MGFD server
As Chef Brad likes to say, we like to “pork it up” at Michael’s Genuine Food and Drink. One of my favorite examples is when we feature Porchetta. A part of the process at Michael’s is that the talent in the kitchen has creative freedom to utilize things when they are at their best to create the freshest, most innovative, fantastic dishes. Every bit of flavor coaxed out over a well planned process, and this is an amazing example of that.
Porchetta pork at a whole other level of flavor and texture. Simply defined, it’s a whole pork belly rubbed with Italian spices, (rosemary, garlic, basil, fennel,) wrapped around more pork meat (loin, shoulder, etc.,) and tied off into a roast. It gets slow roasted for about 8 hours, long enough for the outside skin to get so crisp it snaps off like hard candy. At Michael’s, porchetta featured in a variety of ways, usually at lunch as a sandwich, or at dinner as a specialty.
Porchetta’s not exactly something easily made at home. It is a recipe refined and lovingly recreated over hundreds of years, and even on the list of traditional Italian foods that hold cultural relevance. Brad first discovered porchetta at the restaurant aptly named “Porchetta” in New York City last year. As many Chefs stories begin, he tells me he tried something he loved, had to have more of it. He experimented and duplicated it with twists to make it his own. The same way people get a craving to eat something, chefs get a craving to create something. There is an amazing level of satisfaction that comes from figuring out how to make something your own. I think there is that same level of satisfaction that comes from eating something really special. This dish is no exception.