Roasting a Whole B-B-Q Pig How to Cook the B-B

Roasting a Whole B-B-Q Pig How to Cook the B-B
Roasting a Whole B-B-Q Pig
How to Cook the B-B-Q Pig
There are several methods of cooking a whole
pig such as roasting over an open fire, burying
it in the ground with hot rocks and charcoal,
cooking it in the oven, or roasting in a closed
cooker with charcoal or gas.
The most important thing to remember when
cooking a pig is DO NOT RUSH.!!!! Slow
cooking will result in less shrinkage, more
moist meat and better eye appeal. In a closed
cooker the temperature SHOULD NOT
EXCEED 360˚F. You can partially open the lid
of the cooker if the heat is too excessive. In a
closed cooker a 35# pig will take approx. 4-5
hrs. to cook, a 200# pig will take approx 10=12
hrs.
Probably the most inefficient way is over a fire
or spit. The major problem with this is the loss
of heat to the atmosphere and lack of
temperature control. While you are heating one
side of the pig the other side is cooling. This
method also wastes the fuel that is being used.
Burying the pig in the ground with hot rocks
and charcoal is another method of preparation.
The biggest problem with this method is the
lack of temperature control and knowing when
the pig is done. Also, the pig must be
thoroughly wrapped to prevent dirt, bugs, ect
from contaminating the roast.
The simplest method is preparing the pig in the
oven. You have full control of the temperature.
The biggest difficulty is finding an oven large
enough to hold a 35# pig. A 35# pig with the
head is 25-32 in. long. A 200# pig is approx. 48
in. long.
Probably the most popular method is cooking
the pig in a closed drum type cooker. There are
numerous types of roasters available such as
commercially manufactured units, those made
using 55 gallon drums, or those made from old
fuel tanks. They may be fueled by charcoal,
wood, bottled gas or a combination of these.
You will have good temperature control if a gas
cooker is fired. A temperature gauge mounted
to the top of the cooker or candy temp., is a
valuable aid in cooking. How do you know if the pig is fully cooked?
Using the internal meat thermometer, check
the places where the meat is heaviest, the ham
and shoulder. A fully cooked pig should reach
about 170˚f and held there for about ½ an
hour. DO NOT OVERCOOK!!! An internal
temp, of about 175˚ is maximum. At this temp,
the meat will fall off the bone. Seasoning can
be applied after the meat is removed from the
carcass.
In a closed cooker a 200# pig will require
approx. 60-80 lb of charcoal to be completely
cooked. Do NOT put all of the charcoal in at
one time, 15-20 lb Will be enough to start with.
The charcoal should be evenly distributed in
the draws. At 1-2 hr. intervals you should add
more charcoal. This is where a thermometer
attached to the top of the cooker is invaluable.
Remember, each time the lid is lifted, valuable
heat & moisture is lost. The cooker should
have an easily removable pan to hold the pig
and provide easy access to the fire. The pan
will also provide the easy method of handling
the pig once it is cooked. In a closed cooker it
is not necessary to turn or rotate the pig as the
heat should be fairly and evenly distributed.
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