There are just two ingredients required for this recipe and very little technique. The key to the success of making the best pork scratchings is to quite simply, use the best ingredients.
To produce proper crackling you need pigs that have lived a proper life. They need to have been outdoors, roaming around building up muscle and texture, developing a thick skin with a good layer of fat.
The pork also needs to be hung. We hang every Saddleback pig for up to three weeks. This draws out moisture from the carcass, helps the muscles relax during maturation and ultimately results in the most wonderful texture and flavour.
Before you attempt to create pork scratchings you must make sure the skin is properly dry. There is a charming quote from food writer Jane Grigson, who describes her commitment to creating crispy skin Nirvana, in this case she's talking about duck, but the sentiment is the same:
"Suspend the duck from a broom handle laid across two chairs, or from a convenient doorknob. Train the cold blast of a convector heater on to the duck for an hour. If the weather is blowing a dry gale from Siberia, hang the duck outside in the wind, out of reach of cats."
That is the sort of commitment we respect, in search of the perfect meal.
Preheat your oven to around 200-220C.
Ensure your skin is properly dry and lay flat on a baking tray, making sure that no pieces are overlapping.
If the skin is not already scored then do so carefully with a sharp knife or penknife.
Sprinkle over a generous amount of Pure Sea Salt.
Place in a ferociously hot oven for around 25-30 minutes. Keep an eye to make sure the skin does not catch or burn.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Smash the crackling into good-sized shards.
It should keep in an airtight tub for a few days, but chances are you'll have eaten it all before then.