roast suckling pig
porkeddu kin murta
Adapted for your kitchen, this recipe carries on the Sardinian tradition in your oven at home. A bed of coarse sea salt layered with fresh herbs and garlic infuses the suckling pig with simple, rustic flavor. Your butcher may require you to order the pig in advance; ask to have the pig split in half for you.
- 4 branches fresh myrtle, or 1 large bunch fresh rosemary and 1 large bunch fresh thyme plus more for garnish
- 4 heads garlic, cloves separated and lightly smashed
- 1 (11- to 14-pound) whole suckling pig, split in half lengthwise
- 3 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 6 1/2 pounds coarse sea salt plus more for seasoning
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT: a 9 x 13 inch baking dish; 2 (13 x 16 inch) roasting pans
Put a quarter of the myrtle or herbs and a quarter of the garlic cloves in baking dish. Put pig halves on top, skin-side down. Cover with a quarter of the myrtle or herbs and a quarter of the garlic cloves. Drizzle with 1 1/2 tablespoons oil. Cover and marinate, chilled, at least 8 hours or overnight.
Heat oven to 325º.
Divide salt among roasting pans. Cover with remaining myrtle or herbs, and garlic cloves. Put 1 pig half, skin-side up, into each pan; sprinkle with salt. Roast, rotating pans once, for 1 1/2 hours, then brush skin with remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Continue roasting until skin is deep golden, about 20 minutes more.
Transfer pig halves to a cutting board; cover with foil and let rest for 30 minutes before carving.
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