How to make perfect pork crackling

 

Pork crackling is as important a part of my Christmas dinner as the ham or the pudding.

Every year my dad makes a delicious Christmas cocktail to greet all the family when we arrive, each year it’s different and sometimes quite experimental, but this is generally when the crackling gets eaten as no one can wait till dinner time – cocktails and crackling what better way to start a beautiful Christmas evening…

Since most of us in Australia will buy a Smoked Leg of Ham – and you can’t use the skin off this, you will need to buy the pork skin separately from your butcher. It is so cheap, if not free if you are lucky, so buy up big.

There are some vital elements to making this that will determine whether you succeed or fail…

Firstly, get pork skin that has quite a bit of fat still under the skin, at minimum there needs to be .5cm. It’s the the contrast of the  juicy fat under the crispy skin that makes pork crackling perfect!

Secondly, get your butcher to score the skin. You may think you can do it yourself but trying to score skin that’s flat on a bench is really hard. They have super sharp knives and can do it seconds flat!

Finally, the pouring over of the boiling water is what will open up the scored skin, which will then let in the salt, which then forms the crispy skin. Without one process the others won’t work.

Ingredients

Pork skin – it’s so cheap so get more than you think you will need because it will get eaten… with people still wanting more! Buy from your butcher and make sure the pieces you get have a good thickness of fat underneath the skin – this is vital to perfect crackling! There needs to be at least .5cm – 1cm of fat under the skin. Ask your butcher to score the skin for you, they have the knives for it.

Boiling water

1/4 c salt

 

Method

Finding Feasts | How to make the perfect pork crackling

Pre heat oven to a very hot 220°

Put the scored pork skin on a plate and place in the kitchen sink.

Pour over boiling water and you will see the score marks open up. This is an important part to getting the salt to sit on it.

Remove from the sink and pat dry, lay on a large baking tray with shallow to mid height sides. There will be quite a bit of liquid fat and you don’t want that dripping all over your oven.

Rub the salt all over the top of the skin making sure you get it in the score marks.

Place in the oven, top shelf and cook for about 20-30 mins. Keep an eye on it and turn up or down the temperature after 20 mins if it hasn’t browned or is getting too brown.

It is perfect when it’s golden in colour and the skin has bubbled up.

Enjoy with a beer or a Christmas cocktail… Salty, porky goodness!

Finding Feasts | How to make the perfect pork crackling

 

How to make perfect pork crackling
Author: 
Recipe type: Snack | Dinner Sides
Cuisine: Christmas
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Enjoy with a beer or a Christmas cocktail… Salty, porky goodness!
Ingredients
  • Pork skin – it’s so cheap so get more than you think you will need because it will get eaten… with people still wanting more! Buy from your butcher and make sure the pieces you get have a good thickness of fat underneath the skin – this is vital to perfect crackling! There needs to be at least .5cm – 1cm of fat under the skin. Ask your butcher to score the skin for you, they have the knives for it.
  • Boiling water
  • ¼ c salt
Instructions
  1. Pre heat oven to a very hot 220°
  2. Put the scored pork skin on a plate and place in the kitchen sink.
  3. Pour over boiling water and you will see the score marks open up. This is an important part to getting the salt to sit on it.
  4. Remove from the sink and pat dry, lay on a large baking tray with shallow to mid height sides. There will be quite a bit of liquid fat and you don’t want that dripping all over your oven.
  5. Rub the salt all over the top of the skin making sure you get it in the score marks.
  6. Place in the oven, top shelf and cook for about 20-30 mins. Keep an eye on it and turn up or down the temperature after 20 mins if it hasn’t browned or is getting too brown.
  7. It is perfect when it’s golden in colour and the skin has bubbled up.

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