Fennel-and Garlic-Crusted Pork Roast



1 small head fennel, coarsely chopped
30g (1oz) coarsely chopped onion
2 tbsp olive oil
6 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
15g (1/2oz) chopped fresh assorted herbs (thyme, sage, rosemary, parsley, oregano, etc.)
2 tsp fennel seeds
Freshly ground black pepper
2kg (4lb 8oz) pork rib roast, tied


1. In a blender or food processor, combine the fennel, onion, olive oil and garlic; puree into a paste.  Add the herbs, fennel seeds and pepper; blend to combine.
2. With a small sharp knife, make shallow diamond cuts into the skin of the pork roast.  Season it all over with salt, rubbing it in well.  Rub the garlic-fennel paste over the roast to cover it with a layer about 6mm (1/4in) thick.  Cover and refrigerate for up to 8 hours.  Remove from the refrigerator and let stand at room temperature for about 20 minutes.
3. Preheat the oven to 190c, 375f, gas mark 5.
4. Transfer the roast to a roasting pan with a rack.  Roast for about i hour and 15 minutes or until the internal temperature reads 65c, 150f.  Remove the roast from the oven and allow to stand for at least 20 minutes.  Slice the roast into thick chops.

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