I currently hunt and slaughter my own pork from the many many hogs on my property. I was curious about a couple of different things related to processing hogs in the field. Again this can really apply to any animal one might shoot, not just hogs.
So do you folks typically pull the guts out on the ground or after you hang em? I usually hang a hog from something in the field by thei:36:r hind legs(hams) and go about processing them down from there. I shot a lil guy this week and pulled the guts while he was on the ground, which seemed to be much easier than the way I usually do this. Anyone have any experience with this and whats your preferred way?
Has anyone used the tool called butt out? I saw this the other day in Cabalas and claims to be able to pull the butt out without causing amy damage or contaminating the meat. Has anyone used this or something similar?
When I process my hogs and break em down for freezing, I usually do the 2 back legs (hams) the 2 front legs (butts) and then pull the back straps and tenderloins. How do you guys n gals typically process their meat?
For the lil guys I'll just field dress them and skin them then smoke them whole. I have always smoked the with their legs splayed out and just leave em like that. Has anyone ever smoker these guys whole? If so do you break the rib cage and hip so they lay pretty flat or just lay em and leave em? Was thinking it might cook more evenly if they lay pretty flat....Any Thoughts on this??
For those that shoot and process their how hogs, what is your size preference on a good pig for smoking and eating?
I almost always choose a younger hog as they seem to taste better and have more tender meat. Typically I try and go with a medium sized pig - say something less than 100 lbs. My neighbor just smoked a whole pig that I shot the other fay. He put it in yesterday at 6:30 AM and pulled it off at 8:00 PM. The largest of the two pigs weighed roughly 40 lbs or so And the other weighed around 20. The meat was very mild tasting and not gamey at all. They both were very tender and the meat just slid right of the bones...yummy!
Let me know how you process your meat. I figured this would be a good way for us to share some tips and thoughts to make processing your wild game easier and more efficient.
I have included a few pics to show how I have smoker these whole hogs as well as a few others.