Skinning a raw hog?

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Smoke Blower
Original poster
Dec 6, 2010
It would seem that for me and my tastes, a skinned hog might be better for me.  We plan to grab up a hog from a friend that is a hog farmer. I would probably getting a hog "on a leash".  Dressing it will not be an issue with another friend that is a pro butcher.  However, I was curious how difficult skinning would be? 

I would butterfly the hog over a wet smoker but concerned with the delicate parts such as tenderloin.  Will foiling retard cooking or increase it similar to how we do ribs to "steam"them? 

This would obviously be a farm grown hog, not wild. 
You can skin them but likely will get some hair in the meat.  If you are planning on smoking this whole, the skin will keep the fat to the meat which will baste it keeping the meat moister than if you skinned it entirely and let that all drip into the smoker.  Many people scald and shave the hogs to get rid of the hair and clean up the skin.  When we butcher we actually burn the hair off with a torch and then rub the burnt hair off with a dry rag and then use a wet rag and dawn soap to clean the hog. Then we pressure wash it and continue to butcher it.  It's much quicker, but your hands smell like burnt hair all day.  Here is a q-view I did to show this and how we butcher hogs.

Good luck and make sure to do a q-view. 
I can go with near everything but the burning. Really nice Q-view BTW.

We would knock 'em in the head to put 'em down, Then use burlap bags, scalding water and sharp knives. The hot bags were like the hot towels the barbers used to use before a shave. Then you use both arms pulling the blade shaving those itty bitty mammoths! I like the burning idea, but would it in anyway interfere with the cracklins? The lard rendering was always an important part back when.

BTW why do you want to skin the pig for cooking? The skin makes the best part when its all crisp ..... oh my! I have helped with pit buried hogs, grilled hogs and smoked hogs. If you removed the skin normally you'll have to encapsulate the pig in chicken or hog wire so it stayed together.

You thinking pig or hog? Its hard to start off with a big hog, it takes alot of work. Everybody says they are there for you, but only a couple remember to show. LOL I suggest you invite the butcher unless you are planning to figure out anatomy. Nothing funnier than seeing a man with a razor sharp ax trying to carve pork....LOL

MY Pop used to have an annual pig roast, the last time my Mom let him do it, he cooked 4 huge hogs. Mom put her foot down.

There are a couple a good Qviews here of smoking a whole pig. Don't remember seeing any yet of a whole hog though.

Just a suggestion, if you want to do a whole hog, do at least one or two whole pigs first to familiarize yourself with it. Start smaller and then progress in size.

Good luck and enjoy the smoke.
If you flame the hairs off and leave the skin on and then use a cinderblock pit to cook/smoke the hog, will it taint the taste of the meat at all? Will the skin be edible?

never roasted a hog at all.

Thanks for the help.

Hoping to do it for thanksgiving get together.
I used a barber style electric trimmer/shaver to shave most of the hair off, then washed it down did the hot towels bit as described above and used a share knife (or straight blade razor if you have one) to get the rest of the hair off.  Sometimes I will scald (pour boiling water over part and shave if it has very tough, coarse hair.  I've never tried burning the hair.

If you don't get it closely shaved, the cracklins aren't that good (and as Foamheart said, that is some of the best eating).

I also do not recommend removing the skin - it helps hold everything together and keeps the fat rendering into the meat, keeping the beast moist and tender. is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

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