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Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
tekobo

This Little Pig...

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20 hours ago, C6Bill said:

Thank you, I am doing one 7/1, it is my first day of retirement so need to cook something a little special.

INDEED! Plus, lots of bubbly to celebrate that momentous occasion! 🍾

I've been a member of the retiree's club for 8 years now. Never looked back with regrets! Enjoy the ride, man!

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Posted (edited)

Hey there @Troble.  How are you feeling?  Guessing you must have hit the drinks hard once you had got the pig cook and all of your food out for the guests.   I would have!  

Now, lots of details required to inform future pig cooks:

How did you turn the pig?

Why did you take the eyes out?  Aesthetics or some other reason?

How did it taste and what did your guests think?

What would you change, if anything, about the cook?

How long did you cook for and at what temp?

How much did the little piggy cost?

Oh yes, and how did you serve it?  Was it pulled or did you cut it?

Thank you in advance! I have a party to cater for soon and am considering my options.  

Edited by tekobo
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@tekobo apologies for the delay I’m actually traveling for work and flew to San Antonio for a dinner last night. Trying to see if I can squeeze in a lunch trip today for a highly regarded brisket place the locals are talking about.....

let me try to answer you questions 

I used my hands to flip the pig it wasn’t very hard at all, it was 24 lbs and you know I work out 😀so I just picked it up, flipped it, sauced it and then flipped it back. I was going for pulled pork from the start so I thought saucing it would be a good idea. 
 

I started at 5am at 250 and I flipped it around 11am, cranked it up to 325 after I flipped it to try to crisp the skin. Took it off at 1pm but honestly it probably could’ve stayed on another 30-45 minutes but my guests were hungry. I pulled the pork to make sandwiches, it was soft, juicy and moist but the pig cost me $160, it was also previously frozen so not sure that affected my outcome but both my wife and I felt that my pulled pork had more flavor than the pig and for that price I could’ve bought 5 pork butts easily and cooked them 

I removed the eyes because we have 6 kids under 5 at the house and I didn’t want to scare them. I actually didn’t drink that much because I was too busy playing in the pool with my friends kids who I hadn’t seen in a year and there were two that were one years old that I hadn’t even met yet. The kids always like me to be the monster in the pool and toss them around and make them fall off the floating animals so I did that all afternoon and woke up sore the next day 

I wouldn’t change anything about the cook other than to try to find a fresh pig not frozen and I would leave the pig on a bit longer in an effort to crisp the skin more. That being said I don’t think I’ll do the pig again or very often given that my wife and I both preferred my pulled pork over the pig 

Edited by Troble
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[mention=3070]tekobo[/mention] apologies for the delay I’m actually traveling for work and flew to San Antonio for a dinner last night. Trying to see if I can squeeze in a lunch trip today for a highly regarded brisket place the locals are talking about.....
let me try to answer you questions 
I used my hands to flip the pig it wasn’t very hard at all, it was 24 lbs and you know I work out so I just picked it up, flipped it, sauced it and then flipped it back. I was going for pulled pork from the start so I thought saucing it would be a good idea. 
 
I started at 5am at 250 and I flipped it around 11am, cranked it up to 325 after I flipped it to try to crisp the skin. Took it off at 1pm but honestly it probably could’ve stayed on another 30-45 minutes but my guests were hungry. I pulled the pork to make sandwiches, it was soft, juicy and moist but the pig cost me $160, it was also previously frozen so not sure that affected my outcome but both my wife and I felt that my pulled pork had more flavor than the pig and for that price I could’ve bought 5 pork butts easily and cooked them 
I removed the eyes because we have 6 kids under 5 at the house and I didn’t want to scare them. I actually didn’t drink that much because I was too busy playing in the pool with my friends kids who I hadn’t seen in a year and there were two that were one years old that I hadn’t even met yet. The kids always like me to be the monster in the pool and toss them around and make them fall off the floating animals so I did that all afternoon and woke up sore the next day 
I wouldn’t change anything about the cook other than to try to find a fresh pig not frozen and I would leave the pig on a bit longer in an effort to crisp the skin more. That being said I don’t think I’ll do the pig again or very often given that my wife and I both preferred my pulled pork over the pig 

I hear you on the flavour Troble, however, where’s the theatre in 5 butts?
Your table presentation would not have been as spectacular, your guests were provided with some theatre, anticipation, expectation, dramatic presentation, and choice.
All this enhances the entertainment.
Plus, you had a special chance to see how different muscles interact and change over heat and now know your preferred slice( who ate the cheeks?).
For a special and memorable occasion, I’d enjoy witnessing and tasting the whole pig experience over butts..... as a guest and a cook.
Well done, I thought the theatre was sensational from afar, and certainly would have been better in person.
I have no doubt your guests were entertained and will talk about “Trobles whole pig experience” for many years.
$160..... pffffft, you could have spent a lot more than this on fine steaks that still would not raise the bar on the whole pig experience.



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@Basheri agree with you 100% but I won’t be doing the pig again this year most likely. But for special occasions and when you want the theatre as you mentioned it’s great. I don’t regret it at all just won’t be making it for every party. Brisket & pork butts will be the staples. Pig will likely be a once a year thing 

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Thanks a lot for taking the time to answer my questions @Troble.  Super helpful.  Good to know that flipping the pig was not a big deal.  I work out too but I think I might ask for some help if I go that route!  I am hosting a friend’s 40th birthday party next week and have a little piggy on order.  We are allowed up to 30 in the garden now and it feels like a great opportunity to have a great looking centerpiece like a suckling pig.  Will hang it in the dry ager for a few days to help to develop the flavour a little. 

I hope you found that brisket place in San Antonio and that it was as good as they made it out to be!

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Thanks @tekobowe went to Smoke Shack https://www.smokeshacksa.com it was featured on Guy Fieri Diners, Dive & Drive In apparently. I had some chopped brisket, brisket grilled cheese and some ribs with sweet tea and fries. Great sauce. Good brisket. One of the perks of my work travels is eating all over, and I love TX BBQ. Got an interesting rub that I’ll be trying out soon 

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I had to keep this cook secret because it was for a surprise party for a friend last weekend.  I am really pleased about how it turned out.  Like @Syzygies, I have a soft spot for the chef Fergus Henderson.  Ever since a friend gave me The Book of St John a couple of years ago I have wanted to make Fergus' quail stuffed suckling pig.  It was part of a banquet menu that started with a huge and comforting cucumber, butterhead and lovage salad and ended with strawberries in wine.  Everyone enjoyed everything but the pig was the star of the show. 

I picked up the pig from the farmer a few days in advance and had it hanging in my dry ager.  I felt rather sorry for it and promised to make its death worthwhile. 

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On the morning of the party I seasoned and browned the quail

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Then covered them in a 50:50 mix of creme fraiche and dijon mustard.  Fergus' way of "seasoning the pig from the inside out".IMG_9683.thumb.jpeg.869f12a82cacc9d1db8d5b2d60c3f736.jpeg

After the trouble that I had with keeping the first piggy that I did sewn shut, I asked the farmer to cut out a bit of the rib cage to make it easier to sew the pig up at the top end.  

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I managed to get 11 quail into the pig.

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Sewed it up with a specialised butcher's needle and string.  Was easy compared to my previous attempt with upholstery gear. IMG_9687.thumb.jpeg.65484afedfbf9fba58cd143157099970.jpeg 

Had to do a bit of manhandling to get the piggy's legs going in the right direction.  It had been prepared for a hog roast and, apparently here in the UK that sees you having the legs sticking out.  The pig was to be cooked in a pool of apple cider, topped up through the day.  The ground under my KK is uneven and so I ended up turning the pig around and topping up with a full bottle of wine to keep the liquid from burning too much at one end. 

 

 

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It cooked for 4.5 hours at 180C.  After resting for about an hour, the piggy was ready to carve and eat.  It was spectacular, having my friends cut it open like a wedding cake - sounded a bit different to a cake as the crackling crunched beautifully - and surprising them with the fact that there were hidden treasures within.  Well worth the effort.  IMG_0078.thumb.jpeg.b53da2b1bd2ef7a5f5d20188c2f0a339.jpegIMG_1928.thumb.jpeg.48b9498f3535bad1ee4effa7347edd89.jpeg

Served with extra grilled quail.

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10 hours ago, remi said:

Amazing! And here I am stressed about my first brisket...

I think I will always be stressed by brisket - first or hundredth.  It holds even more promise and mystique than any piggy.  I look forward to seeing your cook.

@Bruce Pearson, lovely to hear from you.  Yes, it was fun surprising our friends and it made for a lovely afternoon.  @MacKenzie, you are welcome at my table anytime but I am guessing a long haul flight doesn’t win against the draw of Moncton.  @Basher, the quail cooked in the pig were soft and yielding.  I preferred the quail that had been grilled outside of the piggy.  Each couple was allowed one of each.  Next time, if there is one, I might revert to the pig kidney stuffing.  Not sure about the weight - approx 12 kg.  All, thank you for your likes!

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Thank you all for the great information. I’m not going to get too fancy with mine next week as it is just a little piggy. i ordered mine without the head, just personal preference. And I’ll season the inside and put a couple apples in before sewing  it up and placing it in that medieval torture device Dennis calls a “basket”. I like the idea of going a little hot and fast with this for crispy skin so will try 300f for 3.5 hours as this little headless piggy is 15 pounds. For first day of retirement this will only be a two person party with a special friend, she is making the baked beans and coleslaw. I’ll take care of the piggy, sourdough bread and watermelon salad. We will be serving BBQ Sundae style with a slice of sourdough at the bottom. For seasoning I’ll go with Bad Byrons Butt Rub and for dipping sauces it will be Southern City Flavors Apple Moonshine. And maybe some Mango Rib Candy. Then later in the day we will be dropping off care packages for friends and family. Well at least that is the plan, wish me luck  🤣

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