CRACKLING PORK LOIN
Acrispy, lacquered bone-in rack of pork is a showstopping roast. It requires a long cook time to fully render the fat cap and cook the thick cut all the way through—a stint that can dry it out or toughen it if you’re not careful. Pre-seasoning the pork in wet brine laced with kombu and bonito flakes helps to keep the meat—especially the lean loin found at the center of the cut—succulent and tender, while lending a delicate, smoky flavor to the pork. Resting the meat fully before a final miso glaze and ripping-hot oven sear delivers super-juicy meat and a sizzling seasoned crust.
ACTIVE 1 HR 30 MIN; TOTAL 19 HR 45 MIN; SERVES 6 BRINE
6 cups water 2 sheets kombu (about 1 oz.) 2 cups packed bonito flakes (about 1 oz.) 1/2 cup Diamond Crystal kosher salt 4 cups ice 1/4 cup honey 2 Tbsp. cracked black pepper 1 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar 1 (5-lb.) bone-in 6-rib pork loin roast, frenched, fat cap scored
2 Tbsp. white miso 2 Tbsp. honey 1 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
1. Make the brine: Combine water and kombu in a large pot, and let stand until kombu is pliable, about 15 minutes. Cook over high just until steaming, about 8 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in bonito flakes and salt; let stand 15 minutes. Pour through a fine wire-mesh strainer into a nonreactive food-safe container large enough to hold pork; discard solids. Add ice, honey, black pepper, and vinegar, and stir until ice melts and brine is cool. Add pork, cover, and chill at least 12 hours or up to 24 hours.
2. Remove pork from brine; discard brine. Pat pork dry with paper towels. Place pork, bone side down, on a wire rack set inside a roasting pan, and chill, uncovered, at least 4 hours and up to 12 hours.
3. Preheat oven to 250°F. Let pork stand at room temperature 30 minutes. Roast pork until browned and a thermometer inserted in thickest portion registers 135°F, 1 hour and 30 minutes to 2 hours. Remove from oven, and let pork rest 30 minutes. (Temperature will increase as pork rests.) Increase oven temperature to 450°F.
4. Make the glaze: Stir together miso, honey, and vinegar in a small bowl. Brush glaze over pork. Return pork to oven, and roast at 450°F until fat cap crisps and glaze begins to bubble and turn golden brown, about 10 minutes.
5. Let pork stand 5 minutes; carve between bones into 6 chops.
WINE Earthy, peppery Syrah: 2015 Paul Jaboulet Aîné CrozesHermitage Les Jalets
TRY THIS METHOD WITH chicken leg quarters or rabbit legs.
Bone-in rack of pork 12 to 24 hours in wet brine, plus 4 to 12 hours of air-drying Master brine of 6%, with salt amount adjusted for kombu and bonito flakes