1. 4 kg Pork roasting joint (rolled shoulder or leg)
1 -2 tsp salt
2 - 4 tblsp oil
Fresh sage stalk or sprigs of thyme
Prep to Cook: Roasting tray, chopping board, veg knife
Prep: Pre-heat the oven to Gas 8 or Electric 220 C
Remove the wrapping from the pork joint
Rub the skin with oil using your hands
Sprinkle with salt and rub over the skin
Cut the onion into slices leaving the skin in tact
Lay the onion slices over the bottom of the roasting tray
Place the joint on top of the onions
Lay stalks of sage or thyme over the joint
Drizzle oil over the base of the roasting tin
Put the joint into the oven without any covering
Allow 15 minutes
Reduce the temperature to 210 C or Gas 7
Baste with oil twice during cooking
Cook for a further 1 - 2 hours depending on the weight of the joint. Allow 35 minutes per half kilo plus 35 minutes to cook the joint.
Do not use the juices for gravy because they will be too salty
Roast crackling pork is comes from the culmination of a hot oven and patience. Keep it simple by serving with crisp salad and jacket potatoes. Nothing tastes better.
Roasting a large joint requires 35 minutes for 500g and 30 minutes over. Use a roasting thermometer if you have one to check the internal temperature
Cooks Know How: Roasting is a very hot method of cooking using some fat to ‘baste’ or lubricate the meat joint. The weight of the joint is crucial. You must work out the cooking time and stick to it because the heat will take time to penetrate to the centre of a joint. It is the heat that makes the meat safe and therefore cooking a joint basically requires you to know the amount of time it must be in the oven. Meat shrinks when it is cooked and roasting is likely to make meat shrink a considerable amount, what looks like a big joint when it goes in will come out a lot smaller. Getting to believe what you see will help you buy the right size joint for the number you want to feed. In particular economy supermarket pork is a wet meat that shrinks considerably. The ‘crackling’ is the skin of the pork joint and this is tough and is ‘scored’ or cut with a sharp butcher’s knife to help the heat melt the underlying fat and turn the skin crisp. I have struggled in my time to achieve really crisp crackling. I have tried pouring boiling water over the joint first as described by some chefs but in the end the heat and the time is the critical factor. If all else fails I detach the skin after the cooking time has lapsed and carried on cooking the skin to achieve perfection. The meat itself benefits from standing after cooking and before carving and will keep hot enough if wrapped in foil for at least 30 minutes.
Roast your pork together with whole garlic cut in half or fruits such as oranges, lemons or apples. The main purpose of this is to create wonderful kitchen aroma and hence increase the appetites and anticipation of what is to come by those about to dine.