Here is everything I can find, plus
everything that folks send me
so send me your tips for "doing one"!

Described to a "Tee" from
"Jack Daniel's Old Time Barbecue Cookbook"
By Vince Staten; The Sulgrave Press, Publisher, 1991

"A big pig is not for the beginner. It's cumbersome to work with, tricky to cook, near impossible for one person to turn, and a whole lot more meat than a dinner party for four can handle. Only try a whole hog when you have help, lots of help, preferably experienced hlp.

"When calculating how much pig to buy, figure a pound and a half per person. The meat will cook down quite a bit; in addition there are some parts on a whole hog, even one that's been dressed by the butcher, that civilized people won't eat.

"Some people recommend buying a dressed pig, with its head and feet removed. I (the author) prefer leaving them on. Gives me somebody to talk to during those long hours.

"Have the butcher saw the backbone through the center, leaving the skin intact. And don't pierce the skin.

"When you put the hog on the pit, spread him apart. Start cooking him meat side down and skin side up. You will need to turn him several times as you cook.

"Sop often enough to keep the pig moist, although you shouldn't need to start until the pig has been on the pit a good four hours. Use any of the sop recipes (in the cookbook), or make a solution of 1 quart water, 1 cup red cider vinegar, and 1/4 cup salt. Brush it on with a small cotton mop.

"Be sure and baste as quickly as possible so as not to lose the heat in the cooker.

"A whole hog won't cook in a half-hour. Plan on barbecuring Mr. Pig only when you can stay up all night.

"For a true pig pickin', serve the pig whole. Give each guest a pair of tongs and instruct them to pull their own meat. The experienced ones will head for the tenderloin first. Trail along behind the newcomers; they're liable to pick something they'll regret later, when they find out what it is."

"There's no magic number"....."Cooking barbecue is just like making mayonnaise. You just have to break enough eggs to make it right."

"Some use the rule of thumb of an hour a pound. With larger cuts, such as a whole hog, this won't work, since no one wants to tend a pit for 90 straight hours.

"Some say the meat is done when a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part reads 170 degrees."

(Do not let the meat thermometer touch any bone, as bone registers a higher degree than the meat itself.)

By e-mail 7/29/99:
"My family has cooked numerous pigs only we do it on a rotisserie which we made using an old oil drum. Once, we stuffed sauerkraut inside the pig using white nurses style pantyhose (new and laundered)- we placed the sauerkraut in the pantyhose then inside the pig so we wouldn't lose any kraut. Although it was kind of gross pulling out the pantyhose and slicing them open in a large pan, it made serving quite easy. Another time we stuffed the pig with chickens - the flavor was excellent although we did have to remove the skin because the chicken basically boiled inside the pig - good eating but not too good looking. Other times we have made stuffing and sewed the underside of the pig up tight so it wouldn't fall out. Every time the pig has come out really good. It usually took about 6 hours on the rotisserie - we use usually around 170lb hog."
From Shaboom---Stay tuned here....I will be adding more info as I find it. There isn't exactly a wealth of information out there about cooking a whole pig :(

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