Wednesday, May 21, 2008

This Little Piggy went to My House...

In preparation of entering the Great Pork BarbeQLossal in June, The Dodge County Purple Porkers got together last Saturday to cook a whole hog - one of the requirements for the Des Moines, Iowa contest.

Actually our weekend project would not be considered a hog, but rather a pig. An oinker "on the hoof" under 180lbs is a pig...over 180, a hog. Our piggy weighed in at 48lbs. The minimum weight that we can cook in the contest is 45. That would put our new pet somewhere in the neighborhood of 75lbs before being butchered.

Jerrod and Chris came over to the Dunker house early Saturday Morning. We got the pig out of my cooler, where it had been chilling out since I had picked it up from Bichelmeyer Meats the day before. Then we got to work cleaning it up and getting it ready to hit the heat. I can say that I pretty much sat back and let Chris do the cutting. He is dangerous with the blade and had the swine ready to cook it in no time.

In order to fit it the cooker, we had to trim a little here and there. Four hooves and a head later, we laid down a little seasoning, injected the shoulders and hams to keep it moist and wrapped it up in chicken wire to help us handle it a little easier. After much discussion, research and a few morning beers, we decided to cook Porky belly down, rather than on its back.

Our purpose for cooking this pig was three fold... First, we had never done one before, so it was practice. Second, we needed to make sure that we could cook all four QLossal categories (pork butt, ribs, loin and hog) on one cooker. And finally, Jerrod's father-in-law is throwing a little get-together and this will be the main course.

Twelve hours after going in to the cooker, we pulled out our test pig. We didn't expect much...maybe that's why I liked it so much. It was surely some good eatin'!

I am really looking forward to heading up and cooking in the QLossal. It will be a great time and something totally new for us. But we before we go we have another pretty big competition here in KC.

Next up for Chris and I will be the Great American BBQ this weekend. We did well at this one last year. We just hope we can keep it up and hear our name called at the awards. But even if we don't, I'll sleep OK. The worst day cookin' is still better than a good day at work!

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