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Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Weekend Roast


It was during one of those days that I was browsing through a back issue of Bon Appétit (September 2011) that I came to this major article on the Italian Porchetta.  The photos made the dish look very appetizing, and it so much reminded me of the Filipino Crispy Pata (pork leg) that usually accompanies our Kare Kare (oxtail stew with peanut sauce).  However, instead of deep frying the pork leg, the porchetta uses pork tenderloin wrapped around by a big spread of pork belly and roasted in a very hot oven for 2 hours. 



The photo was the only impetus for me to try cooking this dish.  I had qualms regarding how it would actually taste since my experience of eating porchetta was only limited to a generous slice served as a sandwich at the Christmas Fair in Piazza Navona in Rome.  A memory of eating this dish was only remembered because it left me wondering what the fuss was all about. But then, I was willing to give it another try and so I went forward and studied the recipe to prepare my grocery list for the ingredients and get an idea how much time I would need to prepare and cook it.



Instead of copying the recipe here, I encourage you to try the link on this page to Bon Appetit Magazine as highlighted since that's where I got mine.   There are two things you have to assure yourself in preparing this dish: first, the procedure is not as difficult or complicated as it sounds; and second, seeing your porchetta perfectly roasted with the skin crunchy to the bite is the reward here.  Maybe I should add a third:  your family or your guests will certainly enjoy the uniquely clean and sweet-spicy flavor of the tender meat that will keep them going for their second and probably third helpings.  It's definitely a dish to be shared with a table full of people who will equally enjoy each morsel as you would.  Guaranteed!



For my table, I served the porchetta with a Filipino-style Onion Soup (Filipino style because instead of using wine, I used San Miguel Pale Pilsen) and a Salad of lettuce, tomatoes and alfalfa sprouts with mango vinaigrette.  This flavor spread was accompanied by a refreshing bottle of Joseph Drouhin Chassagne-Montrachet 2003, which is perfect for the Philippines' tropical weather.  For dessert, a slice each of store-bought Chocolate Mousse.  The meal was a perfect weekender.

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