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The first time cooking a whole pig on a spit can be quite daunting. I've only ever done it a few times myself as I prefer to cook whole lambs on a spit, but I must admit that this recipe is definitely worth trying. 

Ingredients:

  • 15-20kg (approximately) whole pig
  • 15 cloves garlic - crushed
  • 200g salt
  • 100g freshly ground pepper
  • 50g oregano
  • 3 crushed onions (in a food processor)
  • 2 sprigs rosemary

Method:

  • Rub the dry ingredients all over the surface and keep rubbing. Make sure you season the inside of the stomach cavity also. 
  • Smear the crushed onionsand garlic inside the stomach cavity as the sweet juices from the onions will absorb into the meat

Attaching it to the spit:

  • You'll need a skewer at least 1200mm long, 2 large prongs, 1 back brace, 2 leg brackets and stainless steel wire
  • Pass the skewer through the front and back cavities of the pig
  • Pierce the back brace through the spine of the pig so that the U shape of the back brace straddles the skewer and the flat plate is on the back of the animal
  • Insert one large prong through each sets of legs
  • Bend the legs to fit inside the V shape of the leg brackets and use some wire to hold in place. 
  • Stich up the stomach cavity either using wire or a needle and thread to seal in the juices from the onions and garlic
  • If you can't stretch out the front legs of the animal, use some stainless steel wire to attach it to the skewer

Full instructions including a video how to attach a whole pig to a spit can be viewed here

Cooking time:

Many things will affect your cooking time, however allow around 6 hours to be on the safe side. If it's ready a little earlier, you can always push the charcoal to the side and raise the pig to the top of the spit roaster so it stays warm but doesn't actually keep cooking. Use a cooking thermometer to test the internal temperature of the fleshiest part of the meat (the legs) and once it gets to 75 degrees, you know it's cooked. Just before the pig on the spit is cooked, ramp up the heat and lower the pig close to the charcoal to crisp up the skin. If the skin is moist, use some paper towl to dry it off otherwise you'll struggle to get crackling. Remember to use some heat proof gloves cos it's damn hot!

  Rhiannon Peterson   By: Rhiannon Peterson

 

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