Make this Petite Crown Roast of Pork for the Holidays

When you special order a pork crown roast from your butcher, they’re often just 2 racks put together, making them impractical for a smaller gathering. Here’s straightforward instruction for a small crown roast made with our 10-rib rack which serves about 6 people. Berkshire pork is so juicy and flavorful, you need very little seasoning besides salt, pepper, and a few herbs. We find that the reverse sear method of cooking provides the absolute best results for this cut.
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Ingredients

  • Berkshire Pork 10-Rib Rack
  • Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (we used a mixture of thyme, parsley, and rosemary)
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons neutral oil (we used avocado oil)

Preparation

  1. Prepare the crown: Look on both ends of the rack for the small eye that sits above the main eye. With the rack laying fat side up, make a horizontal cut through the meat, across the bones above the small eye. Using a sharp knife, remove all of the meat above this cut, from all sides of the bones. Set aside any scraps. Scrape bones clean. Lay the rack fat side down on a cutting board and using your finger, feel about 1” below the bottom of the ribs for remnants of the chine bone. If any small, thin bone fragments remain trim them away with a sharp knife. Flip the rack over and trim the fat cap to about ¼” thick. Score the remaining fat in a crosshatch pattern using shallow cuts, being careful not to cut into the meat. Turn the rack bone-side up and lay flat. In between each bone at the thickest part, carefully make a cut about 1/3 of the way through the chop being careful not to cut too deep. Stand the rack up on end with the bones facing the ceiling and bend into a circular shape, temporarily securing the ends with a wooden skewer if needed. Wrap two lengths of butcher’s string around the roast just below the bones, like a belt, pull tightly and secure with a knot. For extra insurance your roast won’t come undone while cooking, you can secure it in a few extra places and weave string in and out of the bones, tying those as well.
  2. Adjust your oven racks to accommodate the height of the roast. Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
  3. Season the roast generously with salt and pepper. In a small bowl, stir together herbs, garlic, and oil. Brush the herb mixture all over the meat, including inside the center of the crown. Cover the bones with foil caps to prevent burning.
  4. Carefully place the crown in a roasting pan bones up, along with any butchering scraps if planning to make pan gravy.
  5. Roast until the thickest part of the meat registers 140 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer, our roast took about 2 hours. Remove from the oven and rest for about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, turn the oven temperature up to 450 degrees F.  Remove the foil from the bones. Place the roast back in the oven, and cook until the roast is nicely browned, about 5-10 minutes. (Watch the roast carefully during the crisping process as not to burn it.)
  6. Carefully remove roast to a carving board and tent with foil. Rest roast for at least 15 minutes. At this point, you can discard the meat scraps from the pan and proceed with making a simple gravy, if desired. To serve carve into individual chops.

Recipe tips: Crown roasts are often served stuffed. We find that they cook much more evenly without, but feel free to load up the center with stuffing after cooking before presenting the roast. Setting the roast on a generous bed of greens makes an attractive presentation, we like a mixture of cress and soft herbs. This preparation can also be made with our Porcelet Rib Rack which is already beautifully frenched, however, the skin/rind must be removed first.

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