PORCHETTA AND SPICY BROCCOLI RABE SANDWICH
One of the best sandwiches I have ever eaten, minus a lobster roll (don't even get me started) was a Porchetta Sandwich from this sandwich shop in Park Slope, Brooklyn called Zito. I just found out they closed recently, which has broken my heart. I use to frequent there at least 2 - 3 times a month.
The sandwich contained the most amazing succlented roasted pork (porchetta) slices, on ciabatta bread with spicy broccoli rabe. It was so greasy and juicy, and was perfect companion to the crunch of the ciabatta bread.
Not to toot my own horn, but my porchetta sandwich is by the far the best sandwich you will ever have! I gotta say, that this recipe tastes even better than the one I had at Zito's. Its so flavorful you will enjoy every last bite.
Be aware this bad ass sandwich is greasy so have lots of napkins handy.
1 3-4 pound pork belly, skin on, rectangle big enough to wrap around pork loin
1 2-3 pound boneless, center-cut pork loin
2 tablespoons fennel seeds
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
2 tablespoons crushed red pepper flakes
2 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 lemon, zested
2 bunches of broccoli rabe, ends trimmed, cut in half
1/4 cup olive oil
4 medium cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
freshly ground black pepper
6-8 Ciabatta rolls
2-3 tablespoons unsalted butter, sofen
Toast the fennel seeds, peppercorns and red pepper flakes in a pan on medium-high until they are toasted and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Stirring constantly. Crush in a mortar and pestle or spice grinder. Mix in the garlic, rosemary and lemon zest.
Set belly skin side up. Using a knife, poke deep holes about 1/4 inch through skin all over belly.
Flip belly skin side down. Using a knife, score the belly flesh in a checkerboard pattern. This insures roast will cook evenly. Using a meat mallet, pound skin all over for about 3 minutes.
Flip the pork belly side up, and spread 2/3 of the rosemary fennel seasoning all over. Generously season belly and loin with salt.
Roll belly around loin. Season outside with remaining rosemary fennel seasoning and salt; tie crosswise with kitchen twine at 1/2" intervals. Refrigerate uncovered, for at least 1 day and up to 2 days to allow skin to air-dry (which makes a crispy skin); pat occasionally with paper towels.
Remove porchetta from refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Season porchetta with salt. Roast on rack in baking sheet or a roasting pan, rotate pan once, for 40 minutes. Skin should appear brown and crispy
Reduce heat to 300 degrees and continue roasting, rotating the pan every 30 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center of meat registers 145 degrees, about 1 1/2-2 hours. Let rest for 30 minutes.
Broccoli Rabe / Sandwich Assembly
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
Toss broccoli rabe into the boiling water and cook for 1 minute. Remove from the boiling water and drain, run cold water over broccoli until its cooled down about 2-3 minutes.
Heat olive oil in a skillet on medium. Add garlic and crushed red pepper until soften. Add the broccoli rabe, season with salt and black pepper and tossing to coat in oil. Stirring occasionally, cook until very tender, about 5 minutes. Add more oil, salt and pepper if needed.
Cut ciabatta rolls in half, slather insides of bread with butter. Place on a baking pan or directly on the rack and lightly toast for about 5 minutes.
Cut porchetta in 1/4 - 1/2 inch slices. To assemble the sandwich: layer the bottom half with slices of porchetta and top with broccoli rabe.
Now stuff your face with most delicious sandwich you have ever tasted.