Saturday, July 30, 2011

That is Some Pig

Some time ago, an idea crept into my head that I should try to cook a whole pig.  In bits and pieces, mind you, not a whole luau apple in mouth sort of thing.  I recruited a friend to assist me in this venture; we would buy a whole pig, freeze it, and then slowly cook it all over the course of a year and experiment with new techniques and recipes.

It seemed a good idea at the time but this friend of mine is always busy and switching from project to project to project and in the end I knew it would probably be me doing it and it would be a little too much.  For starters, I would need to buy a stand alone freezer.  So the idea was pushed to the back of mind.  It would come up every so often at dinner parties: "I had this idea to...." and that was as far as it got.

But just a week or two ago a friend of ours mentioned she was splitting a pig with another friend of ours but she was worried it would be too much for her or her freezer.  What could I do but step in and volunteer to buy half of her half?

Well, our little quarter pig became reality and we went and picked it all up today.  Turns out it wasn't that big of a pig after all.  Poor thing had lived a good life on a farm in a field on Lopez Island but had suffered from a hernia.  That's right, a hernia.  How does a pig get a hernia?  Answer: Forgetting to bend at the knees.

They had to slaughter him.  (No hernia surgery for pigs.) 

Our share: ribs, stew meat, chops, neck meat, butt, tenderloin, belly, and roast.  The neck meat is the only thing throwing me for a loop right now but I will come up with something.   I am thinking to cook up some ribs tonight.  Now, a quarter of a pig seems just the right size.  Maybe if this all works out I will do my Cooking the Whole Pig by myself . We'll see!  Our friend Howie nicely chopped this one all up for us.  I have a feeling if I buy a whole one that it will be up to me to butcher it.  Not sure I am up to that task.

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