In Stacked, FWx contributor Dennis Prescott concocts recipes to back up his motto: If we are fortunate enough to eat three meals a day, why not make them as delicious as possible?
Banh mi, my desert island sandwich. The one. A little spicy, a little sweet. Simple and complex. Fantastic.
This is my “Stacked” version, combining Italian porchetta with flavors like cilantro, ginger and spicy chiles: the ultimate pork roast on a baguette. With Sriracha.
Porchetta Banh Mi
Makes 6 (with pork leftover)
- 1 cup lightly packed cilantro, leaves and stems
- ⅓ cup peanuts
- 3 Thai chiles
- 1 garlic clove
- 1 tablespoon of fresh ginger, minced
- 1 tablespoon Sichuan peppercorns
- Juice of 1 lime
- Olive oil
- One 5-pound pork belly, skin on
- One 3-pound pork loin
- ¼ cup distilled white vinegar
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 large carrot
- 1 cup daikon radish
- ½ cucumber
- ½ cup mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon Sriracha
- 6 eggs
- 6 small baguettes
- ½ cup cilantro sprigs
In a food processor, combine the cilantro, peanuts, chiles, garlic, ginger, ½ teaspoon of salt and the peppercorns, and blitz it all together. With the processor running on low, steam in the lime juice and about ¼ cup of olive oil, use just enough to loosen the mixture.
Place the pork belly skin side up on a work surface and score the skin with a sharp knife in a diamond pattern. Turn it over, and rub about ½ cup of the pesto into the pork belly.
Place the pork loin on a work surface, and using a sharp knife, cut ¾ of the way through the loin, opening it up like a book. Place the loin on top of the pork belly, season it with salt and pepper and another ¼ cup of the pesto.
Roll up the pork jelly roll–style. Use kitchen twine, tie the meat at about every inch, pulling it tight to keep the belly together. Refrigerate overnight.
Preheat the oven to 500°. Place the pork on a rimmed baking sheet with a rack, brush it all over with olive oil and season it well with salt. Roast for 25 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 325°, and roast for an additional 2½ hours, until it reaches an internal temperature of 135°. Let the meat rest for 30 minutes before slicing.
Meanwhile, in a saucepan combine the vinegar, sugar and ½ cup water and bring to a boil. Set aside to cool. Use a vegetable peeler to make long thin slices of the carrot, radish and cucumber. Transfer the vinegar mixture to a medium bowl and stir in the vegetables. Leave them in the vinegar mixture for 10 minutes before serving.
In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise and Sriracha.
In a skillet, fry the eggs over easy (the yolk is the best sauce).
Split the baguettes, spread each with the mayonnaise mixture and top them with sliced pork, pickled vegetables, fried eggs and cilantro sprigs. Serve. Go back for seconds.