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Testa Arrotolata (Porchetta di Testa)

post #1 of 2
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My Porchetta di Testa. Should specify this is not traditional by any means, but my own interpretation. Boned out the pig head in one piece, and brined it in predominantly flavored warming spice brine for 24 hrs, then braised the ears and tongue overnight en sous vide @ 180ºF|10hrs. I place the ears over the eyes, peeled tongue in center, then seasoned with peperoncino, and fennel pollen. Rolled it up, tied it with butchers twine, then pulled a vacuum on high. I then cooked en sous vide @ 190ºF|8 hrs. Came out beautiful, tender, and very delicious!


With any tough meats I always start at 180°|8hrs. When I was a restaurant butcher in NYC that was the time and temperature we did all sous vide braises and touch cuts. Now, the tongue is very tough, and the ears just cartilage, so I braise them first because one shot at 180°|8hrs does not make them tender, but pre-cooking them and the tongue guarantees tenderness. Then I stuff them in the head pre-cooked and cook the head higher at 190° because of the skin. To me skin best tenderizes sous vide at 190°, then 8hrs being the standard, also jowls are perfect at that temperature as well. When you are done remove from the bag hot, and place in a new bag and pull a vacuum on high. This sets the Porchetta very nicely, and immediately shock in an ice bath. Cool completely before slicing, obviously. Turns out this method is a Keller, because if you read Under Pressure most of these time and temperatures correlate to his for tough cuts. 

post #2 of 2
Wow another great post!

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