To ensure you have a perfectly cooked hog, we have put together a short guide on how to prepare your pig for cooking success. There are several other ways of preparation, however this is our most recommended method. If you are at all unsure, be sure to contact your local butcher for advice.
A decision you will need to make is where to keep the head and feet in place while roasting your hog. Although our hog roast ovens are certainly big enough to hold a full pig, customers do sometimes prefer to opt not to have the head on, this is an option you may want to put to your customers.
Securing the pig
It is very important to ensure that the weight of the pig is evenly distributed, this should be done by securing the spit as near to the top of the rib cage as possible. If you wish, your local butcher will usually be able to do this for you, just make sure to ask in advance when ordering your produce. The majority of the meat with be supported by the U shaped retainers that go through the back of the animal. The 4 pronged retainers will be used at either end of the spit shaft, to provide further support for the pig. Then the final triangular shaped retainer can be used to either secure the legs of the hog or used at either end of the spit to aid in lifting the hog in and out of the oven.
The preparation of the pig itself is very minimal, only needing a sprinkle of salt to be rubbed in to the skin. When focusing on the quality of the meat, we recommend leaving the skin unscored. Although scoring the meat creates a delicious crackling, this also leaves the meat at risk of becoming dry and potentially falling off the spit. By leaving the meat unscored, the juices are held in and flavours allowed to further develop. In doing this, you will still achieve a crackling, however it may need some tough scissors to cut through once cooked. That is all the preparation needed to cook the perfect pig.
If you do wish to score the meat however, the cuts should be about 1cm thick and no longer than 5cm and ensure that the lines to not intersect at any point. The cuts in the skin create a larger surface area that will come into contact with direct heat, therefore creating more crispiness.