Roast Rack of Pork with Fennel Seeds
My favourite roast is my Mum’s rack of pork which has been marinated in the traditional Portuguese marinade of white wine, garlic, bay leaves and salt and pepper (we use ground white pepper often with pork for its pungency). She manages to roast it until falling off the bone tender. The English are crazy for their crackling on their roast pork, where we back home don’t bother with the skin when roasting. I’m the only one in my household that will eat pork cracking which is why I don’t have it normally.
With this rack of pork I made some pretty good crackling. I didn’t manage to achieve the rib meat to fall off the bone as my Mother’s recipe does, but to try and achieved both, I’ve conclude the best way is to remove the skin completely and cook it separately. The fillet of pork was tender but the ribs which is one of the nicest things to eat when you get the meat collapsing wasn’t right, they should have gone back in.
If you’ve never tried roasting this cut of pork, have a go, just like roasting a rib of beef the pork benefits too from cooking on the bone. There’s two ‘must do’; one is to choose the very best fatty meat and if you can a breed of pork that hasn’t been bred for leaness, I grant you it’s a hard task. Luckily my butcher uses these pig farmers, plantation pigs, since then my roast pork has been pretty close to my Gran’s. (no…I don’t get paid for recommendations, just in case you’re wondering ) And once you have this great piece of meat respect it by salting it the day before, either like I have made here use a dry rub of sea salt, pepper and crushed fennel seeds or a brine type of marinade like Mum makes back home with dry white wine, sea salt, garlic and bayleaves, pepper.
If you buy your pork from a butcher he’ll cut the skin for you otherwise score it with a top notch sharp knife or craft knife.
In order to have as much of the dry rub close to the meat as possible I had to cut the layer of skin almost off, shown on the photo below.
I can not remember how long exactly I roasted this joint for but it was between and hour and hour and a half, on a medium hot oven. Always let your meat rest…but that goes without saying.