In case you were wondering why the blog was so quiet on Friday and Saturday.....first I was kinda fried, then there was the pig. As noted in other posts on this blog, I've got a great group of friends who are pretty much up for anything. We'd been joking about trying to do a whole hog for a while. Finally, a couple of months ago, FOY (Friend of Yoso) Candice got involved and things atartedrolling. First, the twin's mom allowed us to use her back yard, second Candice put the twins in contact with a pig farmer who slaughtered said piggy.....meanwhile, I provided a marinade recipe.....I was out of town until just before the said swine was toast.
So on Saturday morning at 5am, there we were.........
There were a bunch of glitches.....but that's what makes things interesting. First the pig had been butterflied instead of prepped for the rotisserie.....so that meant extra sewing. Candice gave the hog a rubdown, while the guys got the pig on the rotisserie.
We were delayed when we figured out that the darn rotisserie just wouldn't cut it....the kept skipping, it just wouldn't work....so after trying a whole bunch of things we just pretty much did it by hand. The sun had risen by the time things got started.......things looked grim.
We ended up doing 1/8 to 1/4 turns manually....it wasn't easy, the pig was over 80 pounds, then propping it up with one of several garden implements.
Things were going swimmingly until our next bump in the road. John thought we needed to lowerthe hog. Well, the heat had caused the metal stands to swell making movement pretty tough...it was also hot as heck and John didn't do too well with it. So we got a step stool thingy, I climbed up placing one leg on the edge of the pan and basically did a modified deadlift while Candice and John pounded the stand with a hammer to loosen it. First side wasn't too bad...the second side we'll be talking about for a long time. I was up on the edge of the pan....John and Candice were trying their darnest to get the thing loose while I held the hog up. I actually watched the hair on my leg (I wore shorts) burn off, but there wasn't anything I could do. Then my shirt caught on fire......so what to do? Third degree burns or drop the hog into the charcoal??? Luckily, just as I was thinking about skin grafts, they got everything adjusted correctly....and I had brought along a spare shirt. Don't ask me why, for some reason I just did. Of course all the vibrations had loosen one of the retaining rods and the pig almost fell face forward...back to the pig lift while the rod was pounded back into place. This was when I popped open my first Beer Lao of the day....
It was already 10am....time had really flown by. Guests had been told to come at 3pm by Peter. The pig had started developing a nice tan....and John was getting into the habit of peeling the skin off the pig and eating it! Sheesh..... Of course the middle of the pig started getting too brown, so the twin's mom suggesting wrapping those parts in aluminum foil.
The pig was doing nicely...Candice was doing a great job of first basting with coconut oil, then coconut water. At right before 11 Peter returned and Candice and I left....we had to prep some of the other dishes.
The Missus dropped me back off at just before 2 pm and this is what the pig looked like.
By this time reinforcements had already arrived.....Ange had worked getting the tables and everything else set-up, TFD and MrC, YY and MrQ (and "Kyle"), Xianjiang...the whole gang. Everyone took their photo with the pig....then it was covered back up.
It was starting to get darker and the internal temp of the hog was still just over110, we weren't going to make it.
Luckily there was back-up. YY and MrQ brought a bunch of food from Mien Trung...Banh Bot Loc and Hen Xuc Banh Trang.
I set about to fry up about 15 pounds of chicken wings....I loved this set-up.
It was some great stuff. Xianjiang appeared with Fanny Bay oysters.......
It became clear the the pig wouldn't make it. So they did what they could.....and left to cook it further.
I had two slots for guests, so I invited Kirbie and DH. I feel bad that I was so busy behind the fryer that I couldn't spend time with them....my apologies!
Of course, eventually the karaoke started up......and etc....... It was an epic night, something we'll always talk about. Thanks to John and Peter for taking ownership and Candice for keeping things on schedule, YY and MrQ for making sure we had some contingencies, Ange for making sure the area got set-up and decorated, TFD and MrC for always being there for support and help.....and especially the twin's sister Van and their wonderful Mother (thanks for sneaking me all those special dishes!). It was great meeting those folks I knew and those that I met for the first time.
In the end, it wasn't about the destination, but the journey. In the end (no pun intended) we have a heck of a tail,ummm tale, don't we!
Thanks again guys......this was quite an effort......I have heard Ange's request for a goat....but we'll have to get a rotisserie that actually works. And I need some time to recover.