Last year Wif and I headed to my parents’ Catskill Mountains house in Andes, NY. It was documented in excruciating detail in six posts: Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, and Part VI. We bought a 19 pound suckling pig, and roasted it on a spit. Results were mixed, and the cooking was harrowing.
This year we decided to roast another, smaller suckling pig — just 12.5 pounds. To make things simpler, we eliminated the spit and decided to use a simple camping grill I found on Amazon for $20.
With the theme of keeping things simple, I didn’t brine the pig either. I just liberally salted it inside and out. Then I stuffed the body cavity with lemons and herbs, and added a loaf of bread to hold the aromatics in.
We started the fire an hour before we put the pig on, using a mix of wood and coal to control the heat and the flames.
In a brilliant stroke, one of my friends suggested we move the pit to the front yard, with the spectacular views, instead of the swampy backyard.
Good call. It was a lot more pleasant to have it out front.
To make sure the pig wouldn’t stick to the grill, we wiped a vegetable oil soaked rag over the grill, let the oil burn off for a few seconds, and repeated that twice more. It makes just about any grill non-stick (thanks America’s Test Kitchen!). The fire was hot at first, so we got a nice sear after just 20 minutes or so.
We kinda got fearful then, so we cooled it down some. So we ended up cooking it thoroughly, but not to the point of lovely meltiness that I was looking for. There’s always next year.
It was gorgeous.
All butchered up, we had plenty of food for the nine adults and five little people, along with a side of potato salad, asparagus, other veggies, and so, so much beer.