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Author Topic: Pig Roasts - do you haz them?  (Read 917 times)
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mytocles
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« on: October 14, 2010, 03:57:02 PM »

This thread is inspired by the Deep Fried Turkey thread - thanks Roman!   thumbsup

So, what is the closest you can get to the flavor of a whole pig, roasted?  A few years back, I was asked what I wanted for my 50th birthday and my answer was immediate - a pig roast.  Someone knew someone who knew someone... and on the appointed day a whole, split pig arrived, was suspended in a rack, some kind of fire or charcoal came into play, and voila' - instant heaven.  Okay, not instant, it took hours, but that first taste, sublime.

The Fried Turkey thread got me thinking that the "Big Easy" might be one way to replicate that flavor, but I'm clueless as to what cut of meat or what part of a whole pig to use.  I'm also not sure how important it would be to have the smoke/ fire/ coal flavor, or if the flavor of the meat cooked in the skin would be good enough.  I'm also not interested in encasing anything in salt - I've been to one of those pig roasts and it was simply way too salty for me to enjoy. 

I would prefer to avoid using a suckling pig (the thought makes me squirm), but if that's the only way to accomplish the objective, I'd consider it.  I have an large oven, a very good gas grill, I have space in the vegetable garden that could be dug up to provide a pit,  and I would consider a bought appliance like the Big Easy.

Ideas?  Experiences?

Thanks!

 icon_razz
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Mytocles (MY-toe-cleez)

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The Grue
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« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2010, 04:09:14 PM »

The only experience I had with pig roasts was as a kid and where someone else did the cooking.  We did them outdoors on a spit, though.  In Louisiana, where I grew up, this was known as a cochon de lait, which is basically a suckling pig.  It was certainly tasty.
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Scuzz
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« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2010, 04:27:44 PM »

My wife's father grew up and still has family in Hawaii. She is Portugese. Her uncle on Oahu married into a Chinese family. We have twice been to parties at their house and both times the front yard was dug up so that a pig could be roasted. Damn that is good eating.
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wonderpug
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« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2010, 12:30:03 AM »

Bone-in pork butt (it's not really the butt) in a slow cooker is awesome delicious, but I don't know if anything tops real whole roasted pig other than the real thing.  I do cochinita pibil with a Rick Bayless general recipe and Pete Rock's marinade.  IIRC Pete opts for smaller cuts of pork but I use the whole hunk of bone-in shoulder covered in the marinade and wrapped in banana leaves.  Heavenly.  You don't get the crispy outside, though.

Just from walking through Boston Chinatown at lunch I know there's at least a half dozen places that have roast suckling as a regular item, if restaurant-made roast pork fits the bill for you.
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mytocles
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« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2010, 06:37:55 AM »

It sounds like I shouldn't have been born in New England, lol - except for Boston Chinatown, which is only about an hour and three quarters drive from me.  I'll be staying over my sister's at Thanksgiving, not far from Boston; maybe we could do a two day pig-out (that pun was just made to order!)  Funny thing is, where I live, we have 10 or 12 Asian restaurants, and I don't recall seeing roast suckling pig on the menu.  That might be because when I order "special" or "fat-laden" dishes in those restaurants, I usually go for the duck.  I'll have to check out the area menus to see if that could be a quick fix while I plan out something more elaborate.

The last place that I had pork from a roasted pig (I have a t-shirt to commemorate my last visit there) was named "Holy Smokes" because the restaurant was a converted church.  Unfortunately, it burned down - talk about dripping with irony...

Thanks for the tips so far, keep 'em coming!

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Mytocles (MY-toe-cleez)

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namatoki
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« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2010, 06:52:58 PM »

I second wonderpug's recommendation for bone-in Boston butt (the term butt is for the shoulder "butting" into the rest of the pig).  The bone helps to regulate the temperature of the meat and adds flavor as well.  There's a recipe for bone-in Boston butt in the current Cook's magazine.  You start with a salt and sugar rub and let it sit overnight.  Then pop it in the oven to roast.  I can provide the recipe if you can't find a copy of the magazine in your area.
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Caine
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« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2010, 07:57:42 PM »

you might also look around for some asian delis and ask them if they do/know someone who roasts them.  the place we get ours from is often used to seeing two complete strangers buy a half a pig and you might even be able to buy some in smaller portions.  nothing really compares to the slow roasting and we've tried various attempts ourselves. 

this whole thread has started off a party next july for no reason at all except as an excuse to have one. 

in previous years, we would go to 2 or 3 parties with a pig roast.  not so many the last year though. frown
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mytocles
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« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2010, 06:25:50 PM »

As far as I'm concerned, I never met a pork roast I didn't like, as long as they aren't way too salty or cooked-to-death-dry.  I'll likely try every suggestion at some point, maybe I'll establish a regular Sunday Pork-Only Dinner and try something different every week.  Sounds like a plan. 

My next step will be to search our area Asian restaurants for roast pork dishes, and for whether they buy or sell partial roasted pigs - oh, yeah, and to look for the current Cook's magazine.  I used to be a subscriber, but I just couldn't keep up (probably too many video game magazines.)  We do have a few Asian deli type places, though they may be more like grocery stores, I'll have to investigate them in person.  If I find a decent place where I can get a good roast pig meal, or where I can buy a half pig roasted, that would be make me very, very happy.

Thanks again!

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Mytocles (MY-toe-cleez)

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PR_GMR
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« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2010, 07:47:37 PM »

OMG, roasted pig.. A PuertoRican delicacy! Most yum! My mouth waters just thinking of succulent roasted piggie on a stick.
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SkyLander
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« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2010, 09:20:14 PM »

This thread would of been better as:

Pig Roasts - do you hamz them?


Wooo, I'm funny.
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mytocles
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« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2010, 05:33:52 AM »

Quote from: SkyLander on October 18, 2010, 09:20:14 PM

This thread would of been better as:

Pig Roasts - do you hamz them?


Wooo, I'm funny.

Indeed, you are!  (Hey, I'm a ham, too... anything for a bump!)

Wooo, that's bad.

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Mytocles (MY-toe-cleez)

"Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most!"
- I don't remember who said it, and probably neither do they...
ibdoomed
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« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2010, 12:46:23 PM »

I'm a pig roasting fool. I'd show you pictures that my wife took but she put them on friendface and that's too evil for me to get involved with. I've only done whole pigs on a spit and actually I wish I could get a suckling but I can only get pork from one specific farmer and he shys away from the topic every time I mention it.
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Morgul
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« Reply #12 on: October 19, 2010, 03:42:24 PM »

Hrmm, around here (KY/OH)  they cook them in the ground. 

Don't ask me how, I just eat them.
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ibdoomed
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« Reply #13 on: October 24, 2010, 10:14:55 PM »

Here's the pictures of my last pig roast.

http://picasaweb.google.com/ibdoomed/PigRoast?authkey=Gv1sRgCObz8PyUoeWugQE&feat=directlink

Some nice shots of the pig and then some of the fire that got out of hand and finally the attack at the end.
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mytocles
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« Reply #14 on: October 28, 2010, 03:40:55 AM »

Nice, pics, ibdoomed.  Are you sure that particular pig wasn't an alien though - or being bombarded by alien thoughts?  I haven't seen such nice tin foil hats in quite a while!  And the flame-erupting-people-springing-into-action shots are hilarious.

I tried to find some pics of my one and only (in my yard) backyard pig roast, but all I came up with was a funny store - that I'd never heard, or had forgotten.  According to my brother-in-law, when he and the guy who was going to do the roasting, showed up to pick up the "he-be-doomed" porker... the farmer answered the door and did a face palm-plant, and uttered words to the effect of "Awww, crap, I forgot you were coming today."  He put on a pot of coffee for them, went outside, they heard a bit of squealing... and then a large ka-boom sound. 

I can vouch for the fact that the fresher the pig, the better the roast... though the hanging time was only as long as the length of time to consume coffee and chat a bit, and maybe to drive to my house (I didn't see if the pig was hanging in the back of their van, and for some reason - never thought to ask, lmao.

The same brother-in-law, btw, came over this past weekend to assemble the new grill I'd purchased, and - bless his soul - not only put the damned thing together for us, but my sister gave him about a ten minute break after the 4-hour assembly job, before she had him back out on the deck cooking steaks.  It's true that you can only choose your friends and not your family, but sometimes you get really, really lucky!

 nod
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Mytocles (MY-toe-cleez)

"Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most!"
- I don't remember who said it, and probably neither do they...
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