An­thony’s cracker crack­ling se­cret

NZ Life & Leisure - - Life Is Beautiful -

It’s all about the how you treat the skin – and a lot of salt. “You’ve re­ally got to dry the skin out and shrink it,” says An­thony. “Start by pour­ing hot wa­ter over the pork skin to shrink it and start the cook­ing process. This gives the skin a head- start, mean­ing the meat is less likely to dry out in the oven. Wipe the skin ab­so­lutely dry with kitchen tow­els, then rub a bit of vine­gar into it – I use rice wine vine­gar – then rub flaked salt into it. Its coarse tex­ture helps break down the sur­face and lets pock­ets of fat come to the top. “My new­est method is then to add an even layer of flaked salt on the top. Bake the pork at 180 de­grees C for 35 min­utes if it’s in strips, or about an hour if it’s a good- sized slab. The salt acts like an in­cu­ba­tor, draw­ing out the mois­ture and cre­at­ing a higher heat in a drier en­vi­ron­ment, like a pizza oven. “Then lift the salt off – by that stage it should be one piece – and put the whole pork, skin side up, un­der the grill for 15 min­utes un­til it crack­les like crazy.”

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