This Italian version of baked beans is a meal in itself. You'll
need to begin this recipe a day ahead.
800 gmpork skin, excess fat trimmed (see note)¼ cupcoarsely chopped flat-leaf parsley1small red chilli, finely chopped2 tsprosemary leaves, coarsely chopped8garlic cloves, finely chopped1 tbspextra-virgin olive oil1onion, diced200 gm piece ofof mild flat pancetta, cut widthways into six thick pieces350 gmdried lima beans, soaked overnight in cold water, drained1carrot, halved1celery stalk, halved2 eachfresh bay leaves, thyme sprigs, rosemary sprigs400 gmcanned tomatoes, crushed400 gmtomato passata500 ml(2 cups) chicken stock6 slicescrusty sourdough or white loaf, toasted, to serve (optional)
Preheat oven to 130C. Cut pork skin into six 5cm x 20cm pieces. Combine parsley, chilli, rosemary leaves and one-quarter of the garlic in a small bowl, season liberally with freshly ground black pepper. Working with one piece of pork skin at a time, scatter with herb mixture, then roll skin up lengthways and secure with kitchen string. Repeat with remaining skin and herb mixture and set aside.
Place a piece of baking paper in a frying pan over medium-high heat, add pork skin rolls and turn occasionally until skins are golden (1-2 minutes each side). Set aside.
Heat oil in a large casserole over high heat, add onion and remaining garlic and sauté until just starting to colour (5-10 minutes). Add pancetta, top with beans, carrot, celery and herbs, then add tomato, passata and stock, place pork skin rolls on top. Bring to the simmer over medium heat, then cover and bake, turning pork skin rolls occasionally, until beans are tender, pork is gelatinous and liquid is absorbed (2½-3 hours). Remove carrot and celery, serve hot, heaped on slices of toasted bread.
Note You may need to order pork skin in advance
from your butcher.