James Whelan Butchers: Roast Leg of Pork with Crackling

Roast leg of PorkThis roast leg of pork is a delicious feast and ideal for special occasions. The natural layer of fat render during roasting allowing the skin to crisp to the best crackling you’ll ever encounter.

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  • 1 leg of pork (10-12 lbs), bone-in, skin-on
  • 3 heads garlic, minced, plus 5 cloves, halved
  • 1/4 cup grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3 bunches fresh oregano, chopped
  • 1 ½ cups extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 cups dry white wine

Serves 10

To Cook

Mix the minced garlic, lemon zest and juice, oregano, 2 teaspoons salt, and the oil in a medium sized bowl. Using a sharp knife, score the meat diagonally in both directions cutting through the skin and the fat, but not the meat. Stuff each slit with a halved garlic clove. Pat garlic mixture all over pork, pushing paste between each parallel line covering pork and season generously with salt and pepper. Transfer to a large plastic bag set in a pan (such as a turkey roasting bag), leaving top open to let skin dry. For best results let the pork marinade overnight (or up to 2 days).

Preheat oven to 250˚C. Remove pork from bag, and place in a large roasting pan, skin side up. Let stand 1 hour at room temperature. Season again with salt and pepper, and pour wine in pan. Roast for 45 minutes, reduce heat to 180˚C and continue roasting for about 2-2 ½hours. Rest the meat out of the oven for 10 minutes when cooked and serve with a selection of seasonal vegetables and apple sauce.

We hope you enjoyed reading this post by Pat Whelan of James Whelan Butchers. Pat is a 5th generation butcher, cook book author and the director of  James Whelan Butchers with shops in Clonmel, the Avoca Handweavers Rathcoole and Kilmacanogue, Dunnes Stores Cornelscourt, Rathmines and Swords in Dublin. Sign up to our newsletter for more updates from James Whelan Butchers

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