Porchetta | Boneless Pork Roast

Next time I make this porchetta, and there will be a next time, I will try and get a longer cut of shoulder. This one was very squat and not well butchered. But the taste was sublime and took me right back to Italy.

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Last month a friend of mine was here from overseas. Her time in Somerset West was extremely limited and she asked if we could meet one morning. I knew upfront it would be together with another person. This is not someone I particularly want to spend my time with. But, I wanted to see my friend and this was more important to me. The day before we were meeting she asked if we could make it in the afternoon. I already had plans so changed them so I could spend as much time with her as possible. I arrived at the coffee shop to see Ms X was already there with my friend. As I sat down she turned her back to me. And she made it very clear that the plans had been changed because the morning did not suit her!

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Whenever I started speaking she was sure to interrupt. She did not let me finish anything I was saying. And when she spoke it was with her I know all attitude. What was even more interesting was that she would ask a question, and before my friend could answer, she was telling a story about her question. It reminded me why I stopped being friends with another person in the first place. And confirmed why I really do not like her. There is not one nice thing I can say about her after more than 19 years of knowing her. And that really is not like me, as I always look for the silver lining. And the silver lining here was seeing my friend, her kids and her wonderful husband. However, next time I will make sure I see her alone – or with another group of people.


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You can serve this cold on rolls, or hot out of the oven
Recipe For: Main Course
Cuisine: Italian
All Rights Reserved: An original recipe from Lavender and Lime


  • 15 mls olive oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 fennel bulb, finely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 30 mls rosemary leaves, picked and finely chopped
  • 2 bay leaves, thinly sliced
  • 5 mls fennel seeds
  • Pinch of ground cloves
  • 1.2 kg pork shoulder, boned and butterflied
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
  • Fresh rocket leaves for garnish


  • Place the oil into a large frying pan and heat over a medium temperature
  • Sauté the onion until soft, and then add the fennel
  • Once soft add the garlic, rosemary, bay, fennel seeds and ground cloves
  • Cook until you can smell the spices
  • Set aside to cool while you preheat the oven to 170° Celsius
  • Place the pork onto a cutting board and season the flesh
  • Spread the onion mixture on the inside and roll up as tightly as possible
  • Tie with butcher's string and season the fat with a generous amount of salt
  • Tightly wrap the pork in tin foil and place into a roasting tin
  • Bake in the oven for 3 hours, remove from the oven and remove the foil
  • Place back into the roasting dish and return to the oven for 30 minutes
  • Remove from the oven and allow to rest before slicing
  • Serve on a bed of rocket


Inspiration published on Lavender and Lime July 19:

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12 thoughts on “Porchetta | Boneless Pork Roast

  1. You are a better person than me, Tandy, as I would not have gone, but, if I had made the effort, I would have left. I am not tolerant of rudeness to me or any of mine. A great recipe.

  2. What a frustrating meeting with your friend (and non-friend). But I think you were wise to go ahead with it–it can be far too easy to lose track of people, even with Facebook.

    I think pork shoulder is absolutely one of the most flavorful cuts! But given all the fat and bone to carve around, I can see how getting one that is well-butterflied could be difficult. I may have to see if I can butterfly one of the pork shoulders I have in the freezer (on a day I feel brave)…

  3. It’s interesting about your friend wanting to see you (and everyone else) in her limited time. We similarly have a friend who returns to Australia each year and has such a jam packed diary that there are always many, many changes of plans and doubling and tripling up of friends, even if we have little in common. On this most recent visit, he saw none of us as his plans changed so frequently including several time on the day itself. I get that he wants to see everyone but we too have busy lives and I’m past being grateful for a few crumbs of his time.

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