Whole Hog in SoCal (Q-View)

Discussion in 'Pork' started by kaywhyelly, Jul 20, 2013.

  1. kaywhyelly

    kaywhyelly Newbie

    Hey all,

      The day has finally arrived.  A couple of friends and I have been planning to smoke a whole hog for about two months now and today is the big day.  

      We built our BBQ pit based off the schematics in the book "Holy Smoke."  Simple construction with cinder blocks, chicken wire, and rebar, though we did have to spend an afternoon leveling out the ground for the build.  Nothing a jackhammer, a pickaxe, and a shovel can't fix.  We picked up the hog yesterday from Sanchez Meat Company in Culver City in Los Angeles.  Great place and extremely accommodating staff.  Would definitely visit them again.

      Here's a nice little video of the start of the smoking until about 11:15 AM:

    Here's my friend Wes demonstrating what our delicious hog friend, dubbed "Enrique Puerco", will look like (Sans apple, lying down and butterflied, of course.  Just for the comedic effect).  

    My friend Neil, who is gracious enough to host this pickin' for us, constructed this beautiful table with which we can easily transfer the hog on the chicken wire/rebar with grooves in the interior parts (the grate is on the table in this photo).

    On the right end of the table, there's room for a butcher's block once our friend Enrique is ready to be pulled.  Additionally, we added lining under the table and a catching system for the drippings (the camera on my phone sucks, sorry for the crap detail):

      So, our call time for this morning was 4 AM PST to get the coals ready and to have Enrique on stage by 5 AM.  We lit our first batches of charcoal in our starters.

    We're using oak and cherry wood for our hardwood and threw that in there as well.

    Right on time, we hit 5 AM and we're at the right temperature, so we throw Enrique on the grate.

    We got the temperature to stabilize around 235-250 F and we covered up the pit with a large piece of plywood with handles screwed into the sides for an easy lift.  The temperature started to dip around 190-200, so we added our next round of charcoal to heat it up again.  Enrique was starting to show some good color as well.

    Enrique as of 7:15 AM:

    This helped, but we still were losing some heat, so we improvised and covered up the vents to keep the heat in our sweet spot of 225-250.

    It is 8:25 AM and we're good at 235 degrees for the pit temperature.  I'll keep updating this as we go along.
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2013
  2. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    This is sooooo cool!  Starting to have a great tutorial for a whole hog in the makings!  Count me in! [​IMG]

  3. foamheart

    foamheart Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Looks like a fine evening will be had all!
  4. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Looks great! Can't wait to see the finished pig!
  5. kaywhyelly

    kaywhyelly Newbie

    Chloe's starting to get the good smell of smoking hog:

    Forgot to mention that the cooks are enjoying sipping on my favorite bourbon:

  6. kaywhyelly

    kaywhyelly Newbie

    Enrique at 9:05 AM:

    At 9:15 AM, temp was dropping to 200 degrees, added charcoal.  Wes mopping the pig:

  7. kaywhyelly

    kaywhyelly Newbie

    Boy, this smells good, right Chloe?

    Forgot to mention, the cooks are enjoying this fine spirit whilst smoking Enrique:

  8. That is going to be some good picken.

    Happy smoken.

  9. kaywhyelly

    kaywhyelly Newbie

    Enrique at 10:15 AM for his mopping:

  10. Starting to look good. What is the IT? What IT will you take it to?

  11. kaywhyelly

    kaywhyelly Newbie

    We're gonna take an IT at 11:15.  Ideally, we'd like to get the IT to 190-200.  The closer to 200, the better.  It'll be an easier pull that way.
  12. [​IMG]Looking great so far. Looks like a project I'll need to do soon.
  13. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    This is looking soooo cool!  Yummmm.....wish I was there!

  14. kaywhyelly

    kaywhyelly Newbie

    Internal temp is reaching about 190, almost time to be finished.  We flipped the pig and are ready to mop the sucker on the other side.

    Won't be long before Enrique is ready for his big debut and it's time to pull!
  15. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    Ain't nothing better than a good ole pig pickin! Except when there's bourbon involved.
  16. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Looks great!

    Show more pictures as you are pulling/plating it!

  17. Looks great! What are you using for mop sauce? How much does the pig weigh?

  18. kaywhyelly

    kaywhyelly Newbie

    It was a little surprising that it didn't take long at all.   We budgeted most of the day out to cooking and the hog is actually around 190-200 internal temp.  We're gonna let the current coals die down over the next hour or so and then let the pig cool for another hour before picking.  It's looking mighty delicious.
  19. papacurtis

    papacurtis Smoke Blower

    Nicely done hog. Enjoy the delicious outcome. And thanks for reminding me, that i have a bottle of Pappy van Winkle bourbon that needs to be sampled this eve..
  20. pgsmoker64

    pgsmoker64 Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Man that hog looks fantastic!  Pure porkliciousness!!!!

    Keep that q-view coming my friend....great job!!


Share This Page