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Whole hog. Ook

maineman

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I am going to try a whole 69-75 lbs hog on my new RF smoker/cooker. I had planned on doing a pig with the skin and head on but butterflies laying on the rack above the reverse flow plate. I’m having a hard time finding any butcher shops that don’t skin the pig. Can I do a skinned pig like I mentioned above with any success? Any suggestions are greatly welcomed!
 

chilerelleno

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If you can't get a high enough direct heat over the entire pig to get the skin to cracklins, then the skin will just be a waste except for aesthetics.
 

maineman

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I think I can get it hit enough...? I really have to dampen the cooker back so I think if I open up the drafts I could get it really hot.
I think a lot of it is about the presentation though. Apple in mouth and the skin peeled back.....
If I do one that’s already skinned is there any special I need to do? Put foil on it, etc...? Thanks much
 

chilerelleno

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If you want to eat the ribs and tenderloins, I advise putting foil beneath them during the first part of the cook which is body cavity down.
When you flip to finish I suggest that the tenderloins become chef's snacks.
 
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smokin peachey

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I agree with what chilli is saying about protecting the ribs and loin. It’s hard to get the larger shoulders and hams done and not over cook the ribs and loins if you don’t do something to protect them. I have stuffed the cavity with potatoes and onions before to help protect it. Good snacks for sure
 

maineman

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So if I do a butterfield pig belly down I should put foil over ribs and tenderloins for part of the cook? Sounds like good advice. This will be my first ever whole hog. On a side note my typing is not as bad as it seems, my phone keeps auto correcting to what it thinks I want to say. I’m just too dumb to stop it.....
 

chilerelleno

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Yes, I've made a 3-4 layer thick mat of foil to lay on the grates and block heat. But you'll need to wrap the midsection to protect from the flow of heat.
 

smokin peachey

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I have also wrapped 2x8 boards in foyal and put them under the rib section to keep them away from the heat but I’m not sure that will help much in a reverse flow smoker
 

Fueling Around

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Skin on whole hog is a lot of work. At least 20 gallons of boiling water to scald and 2-3 people with dull knives to scrape the outer skin layers and the bristles away from the base rind.
I don't know of any local butchers that will go through the scald and scrape process. I'm not sure if that even passes meat inspection these days.

I've done a number of whole hog cooks. None on a reverse flow.
I got pretty good cracklins on a purpose built offset charcoal hog cooker. I prefer them separated from the hog, fat scraped, and baked.

You can get the whole hog appearance (appeal?) with apple in the mouth on a skinned hog. I prefer no mop. My roast master insisted on a sugar and salt slather

If I wanted to save choice meats ... I would butcher the whole hog into shoulders, hams, loins, belly, and ribs.
 

maineman

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Thanks everyone, looks like I’m going with a skinned hog. I’m planning on injecting with something and dry rubbing then spritzing. While cooking.Bbq sauce will be in the side. Does anyone has a good recipe for either the injection and//or rub they can share? Looking for something spicy and sweat but still have a pork flavor.
 

maineman

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I just found a local butcher shop that sells pigs with skin on. I didn’t think to ask when talking with them but does this mean it comes ready to cook or ready to scald? I’m not into scalding it, I remember doing that as a kid....
 

maineman

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Been a few days.... work has be crazy for me. Picking the hog up in two weeks. Can anyone share a good injection and spritz for a whole hog with skin on?
 

azhunter

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Thanks everyone, looks like I’m going with a skinned hog. I’m planning on injecting with something and dry rubbing then spritzing. While cooking.Bbq sauce will be in the side. Does anyone has a good recipe for either the injection and//or rub they can share? Looking for something spicy and sweat but still have a pork flavor.
I know I'm a little late to the party, but when it comes to sauces and rubs, it's really hard to beat Jeff's. It's my main go to when I have ample time to mix it all up. But when I don't, I use Big Swedes rubs and seasonings. They run a close second to Jeff's.
 

forktender

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So tomorrow is the big day, we have all the essentials! One question, what’s the easiest way to remove the eyeballs?
I want to come to that party, any party with Roman candles is a must go for me. I'll bring the goggles and whiffle ball bat, and we will have a drunk'in Home Run Derby . I haven't been struck out yet and have the burns to prove it. That looks like some good clean fun!!!
 

azhunter

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So tomorrow is the big day, we have all the essentials! One question, what’s the easiest way to remove the eyeballs?
I've never removed the eyeballs. I just cover the head and ears with foil to prevent them from getting to dark. That hog you have pictured looks ready to cook aside from some clean up trimming and washing. You also seem to have other essentials ready to go. Enjoy and have fun with it. Looking forward to pics.
 

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