Pancetta is a salted pork belly. The pancetta is to get a good pork and add your time and some ingredients to create the pork even better. That is pancetta.

When I use a pork belly at our restaurant, basically I make it to pancetta, then use it. It is interesting to know that the pancetta is originally the way of saving food.

Pickled plums (salted Japanese apricot), Japanese shallots, smoked food, etc…I would like to post those recipes sometime.

パンチェッタ





[Ingredients]
Some pork belly
Some coarse salt
Granulated sugar (1/2 the amount of coarse salt)
Some laurier
Some thyme
Some whole pepper


[How to cook]
I bet you might think how much is “Some”(proper quantity/right amount)… When I make it, I don’t measure it..so the ingredients are always like this…but I know it is terrible…so I will write down about how much as a reference.

Pork belly (1 kg/2.2 lb)
Coarse salt (300g/10 oz)
Granulated suger (150g/5 oz)
Laurier (1 bigger size one)
Thyme (1 branch)
Whole black pepper (1 tablespoonful)

The most important point to make pancetta is to choose a delicious pork. You often see “〜pork” at supermarkets (like a brand name), but it is not always a good one.

Everybody’s different, but my “delicious pork” point is less pork smell.

The pork I use at our restaurant is SPF pork from Aomori prefecture. SPF stands for specific-pathogen-free. It means “completely germ-free”. (so the pigs have been raised in a “completely germ free” environment.) Unfortunately though, there are lots of places where uses that way, so not all the SPF porks are good.

But…Please try to find the one you think is delicious! If you can only find a regular one, it is OK. There is always next time.

Well then, here is how to cook. You mix all the ingredients besides pork in a bowl or something.

パンチェッタ3

You cut the laurier by hand as well as thyme. Mix everything well. Then take one handful and put it in the rectangular baking dish or something. Next, place the pork belly in it and cover it up with the ingredients that is already in.

パンチェッタ4

It is just like this. Wrap it up and leave it in the refrigerator over night.

Here is next day. Take the baking dish out of the refrigerator.

パンチェッタ5

As you can see in the picture above, water has come out. You will remove the salt and put running water in the baking dish.

パンチェッタ6

The running water shouldn’t be hitting the pork belly directly. You will do this process (running water) for about two hours to remove salt. This is an another important point.

It is not good to remove salt too much or not enough. If you use how much the pork belly and other ingredients as I suggested earlier, two hours should be good.

In two hours, wipe off the water (wetness) from the surface of the pork belly, and hang it somewhere warm to age.

パンチェッタ7

I like looking at it a lot. It feels I am making something! If it is a winter time, hang it for half a day. If it is a summer time, hang it for two hours. Once the surface is getting dry, put it in a refrigerator to tighten it once. (It can be for an hour or can be for a lot longer. It depends.)

After that, you will cut it as the thickness you like. Wrap up each of them. Done!

パンチェッタ8

You will need to eat it within a week. If you don’t think you can, freeze it. It will be fine for about a month. When you make it for the first time, please grill it just as it is (without seasoning). I would like you to feel that the delicious pork becomes even better!


“The recipes using this pancetta”

Carbonara
Pancetta and canola flower(field mustard) pasta