How Do You Cook A Pig In The Ground?

FirePlugDawgFirePlugDawg Posts: 324 ✭✭✭ Junior

I've seen the tail end of it - a pig in the ground cooked through - I know it is a real thing, but do not know the steps. Is the seasoning all dry rub, as I would think mop basting wouldn't be possible. Flavor wise, is there an advantage to this method versus a spit or grill cooked pig?

Comments

  • bmauldinbmauldin Posts: 2,411 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    You take their “pitt-man”

    Was this an Arkansas joke?

  • moosmoos Posts: 722 ✭✭✭✭ Senior
    edited May 10

    Most traditional and probably well known is the Hawaiian method where you wrap the pig in banana leaves.

    Basics are:
    Dig a hole (keep the dirt)
    Line it with rocks
    Build a wood fire
    Burn it down to coals
    Place preseason pig wrapped in banana leaves with stuffed cavity (citrus, etc) on coals
    Cover with dirt
    Crack beer and come back in 8-12 hours for delicious, tasty meat

    Having done it this way and others, there's No real advantage, imo. Just a different way to do it. Find the way you like, get good at it. Experiment with other ways (or don't.)

  • DirtDawgDirtDawg Posts: 55 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @FirePlugDawg -- however you do it, please invite my fat ass over to sample. I'll bring plenty of beer to go 'round!

  • FirePlugDawgFirePlugDawg Posts: 324 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @moos said:
    Most traditional and probably well known is the Hawaiian method where you wrap the pig in banana leaves.

    Basics are:
    Dig a hole (keep the dirt)
    Line it with rocks
    Build a wood fire
    Burn it down to coals
    Place preseason pig wrapped in banana leaves with stuffed cavity (citrus, etc) on coals
    Cover with dirt
    Crack beer and come back in 8-12 hours for delicious, tasty meat

    Having done it this way and others, there's No real advantage, imo. Just a different way to do it. Find the way you like, get good at it. Experiment with other ways (or don't.)

    A vote up for a detailed response but I saw the pit cooked pig in Georgia, not Hawaii. I recall seeing aluminium foil in abundance so I suppose that is how it was covered (with perhaps dirt over it).

  • moosmoos Posts: 722 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    @FirePlugDawg said:

    @moos said:
    Most traditional and probably well known is the Hawaiian method where you wrap the pig in banana leaves.

    Basics are:
    Dig a hole (keep the dirt)
    Line it with rocks
    Build a wood fire
    Burn it down to coals
    Place preseason pig wrapped in banana leaves with stuffed cavity (citrus, etc) on coals
    Cover with dirt
    Crack beer and come back in 8-12 hours for delicious, tasty meat

    Having done it this way and others, there's No real advantage, imo. Just a different way to do it. Find the way you like, get good at it. Experiment with other ways (or don't.)

    A vote up for a detailed response but I saw the pit cooked pig in Georgia, not Hawaii. I recall seeing aluminium foil in abundance so I suppose that is how it was covered (with perhaps dirt over it).

    I did mine in Decatur, GA. I've never been to Hawaii, but I've seen it on TV. Foil works too. Banana leaves are available at the DeKalb farmers market if you're feeling tropical.

    There have to be 1000 YouTube video tutorials on this as well.

  • FirePlugDawgFirePlugDawg Posts: 324 ✭✭✭ Junior

    Didn't Hank Williams Jr have a song about 'pig in the ground'? (He's from the other place) I figured there had to be a GA way of doing it.

  • ghostofuga1ghostofuga1 Posts: 864 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate
    edited May 11

    I agree with @moos that there is probably a 1000 ways to do it. I had a place that we did a "pig pickin' " a few times a year so we put a little more effort in making the pit. Dug a hole large enough to fit a large hog in. Concave the pit so the outer walls slope inwards. Line the pit with sand and place nice size river rock on the bottom and sides. Build two fires. One in the pit, the other outside of the pit.

    We prepped the pig with an apple cider vinegar wash and a rub then wrapped it in foil. After the fire in the pit burns down, spread the coals evenly. Place a **** of heavy gauge chicken wire in the pit with about a foot of it sticking up on either side. Place pig in on top of the chicken wire and cover with sand (8 to 10"). Take hot coals from the outside fire and spread on top of the pit and keep doing this every so often to keep a constant heat on top. Drink lots of beer so dehydration doesn't set in.

    After 10- 12 hours, depending on the size of the pig, clear the coals and sand from the pig. A couple of guys on both sides of the pit can lift the pig out by grabbing the chicken wire and carrying to the picking table. Drink more beer and enjoy.

  • FirePlugDawgFirePlugDawg Posts: 324 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @ghostofuga1 said:
    I agree with @moos that there is probably a 1000 ways to do it. I had a place that we did a "pig pickin' " a few times a year so we put a little more effort in making the pit. Dug a hole large enough to fit a large hog in. Concave the pit so the outer walls slope inwards. Line the pit with sand and place nice size river rock on the bottom and sides. Build two fires. One in the pit, the other outside of the pit.

    We prepped the pig with an apple cider vinegar wash and a rub then wrapped it in foil. After the fire in the pit burns down, spread the coals evenly. Place a **** of heavy gauge chicken wire in the pit with about a foot of it sticking up on either side. Place pig in on top of the chicken wire and cover with sand (8 to 10"). Take hot coals from the outside fire and spread on top of the pit and keep doing this every so often to keep a constant heat on top. Drink lots of beer so dehydration doesn't set in.

    After 10- 12 hours, depending on the size of the pig, clear the coals and sand from the pig. A couple of guys on both sides of the pit can lift the pig out by grabbing the chicken wire and carrying to the picking table. Drink more beer and enjoy.

    Many thanks. For those less acculturated to Southern terminology, a 'pig pickin' - in my experience - is any BBQ where there is a whole (or mostly whole) pig. I'm more familiar with the term used with a grilled hog.
    Also, I had to re-read your entry in that I overlooked that the hog was covered in foil prior to throwing the sand on it. Most people's minimum daily requirement of silica is fairly small. Thanks again. Oh, good tip on avoiding dehydration. Extra points for that.

  • moosmoos Posts: 722 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    @ghostofuga1 said:
    I agree with @moos that there is probably a 1000 ways to do it. I had a place that we did a "pig pickin' " a few times a year so we put a little more effort in making the pit. Dug a hole large enough to fit a large hog in. Concave the pit so the outer walls slope inwards. Line the pit with sand and place nice size river rock on the bottom and sides. Build two fires. One in the pit, the other outside of the pit.

    We prepped the pig with an apple cider vinegar wash and a rub then wrapped it in foil. After the fire in the pit burns down, spread the coals evenly. Place a **** of heavy gauge chicken wire in the pit with about a foot of it sticking up on either side. Place pig in on top of the chicken wire and cover with sand (8 to 10"). Take hot coals from the outside fire and spread on top of the pit and keep doing this every so often to keep a constant heat on top. Drink lots of beer so dehydration doesn't set in.

    After 10- 12 hours, depending on the size of the pig, clear the coals and sand from the pig. A couple of guys on both sides of the pit can lift the pig out by grabbing the chicken wire and carrying to the picking table. Drink more beer and enjoy.

    We used hardware cloth instead of chicken wire. We're fancy like that

  • BiffLowmanBiffLowman Posts: 147 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @DirtDawg said:
    @FirePlugDawg -- however you do it, please invite my fat ass over to sample. I'll bring plenty of beer to go 'round!

    WE CAN SAY ASS?!

  • PeachCoDawgPeachCoDawg Posts: 77 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @moos said:
    Most traditional and probably well known is the Hawaiian method where you wrap the pig in banana leaves.

    Basics are:
    Dig a hole (keep the dirt)
    Line it with rocks
    Build a wood fire
    Burn it down to coals
    Place preseason pig wrapped in banana leaves with stuffed cavity (citrus, etc) on coals
    Cover with dirt
    Crack beer and come back in 8-12 hours for delicious, tasty meat

    Having done it this way and others, there's No real advantage, imo. Just a different way to do it. Find the way you like, get good at it. Experiment with other ways (or don't.)

    That's the way to do it. Actually in Hawaii, they slather the hog with mayonnaise (don't ask me), but when it comes out the mayo is gone. Can't taste it, nothing like that. I thought that was weird. I'd use this exact method, except use a good rub instead of mayo, and you can use cheesecloth to wrap instead of banana peel. I'm a pit guy but this is a great way to cook a hog. Just falls apart

  • ghostofuga1ghostofuga1 Posts: 864 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    @BiffLowman said:

    @DirtDawg said:
    @FirePlugDawg -- however you do it, please invite my fat ass over to sample. I'll bring plenty of beer to go 'round!

    WE CAN SAY ASS?!

    But we can say "s t r i p "....LOL!

  • FirePlugDawgFirePlugDawg Posts: 324 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @BiffLowman said:

    @DirtDawg said:
    @FirePlugDawg -- however you do it, please invite my fat ass over to sample. I'll bring plenty of beer to go 'round!

    WE CAN SAY ASS?!

  • FirePlugDawgFirePlugDawg Posts: 324 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @PeachCoDawg said:

    @moos said:
    Most traditional and probably well known is the Hawaiian method where you wrap the pig in banana leaves.

    Basics are:
    Dig a hole (keep the dirt)
    Line it with rocks
    Build a wood fire
    Burn it down to coals
    Place preseason pig wrapped in banana leaves with stuffed cavity (citrus, etc) on coals
    Cover with dirt
    Crack beer and come back in 8-12 hours for delicious, tasty meat

    Having done it this way and others, there's No real advantage, imo. Just a different way to do it. Find the way you like, get good at it. Experiment with other ways (or don't.)

    That's the way to do it. Actually in Hawaii, they slather the hog with mayonnaise (don't ask me), but when it comes out the mayo is gone. Can't taste it, nothing like that. I thought that was weird. I'd use this exact method, except use a good rub instead of mayo, and you can use cheesecloth to wrap instead of banana peel. I'm a pit guy but this is a great way to cook a hog. Just falls apart

    banana leaves are not peels Also cheesecloth burns, no?

  • moosmoos Posts: 722 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    @FirePlugDawg said:

    @PeachCoDawg said:

    @moos said:
    Most traditional and probably well known is the Hawaiian method where you wrap the pig in banana leaves.

    Basics are:
    Dig a hole (keep the dirt)
    Line it with rocks
    Build a wood fire
    Burn it down to coals
    Place preseason pig wrapped in banana leaves with stuffed cavity (citrus, etc) on coals
    Cover with dirt
    Crack beer and come back in 8-12 hours for delicious, tasty meat

    Having done it this way and others, there's No real advantage, imo. Just a different way to do it. Find the way you like, get good at it. Experiment with other ways (or don't.)

    That's the way to do it. Actually in Hawaii, they slather the hog with mayonnaise (don't ask me), but when it comes out the mayo is gone. Can't taste it, nothing like that. I thought that was weird. I'd use this exact method, except use a good rub instead of mayo, and you can use cheesecloth to wrap instead of banana peel. I'm a pit guy but this is a great way to cook a hog. Just falls apart

    banana leaves are not peels Also cheesecloth burns, no?

    Ive never used cheese cloth for this, but the idea is to protect it from the dirt, whatever you use. Burying it prevents burning as it cuts off the oxygen flow, so you just get smoldering, consistent heat. which is what you want in cooking a pig like that.

    I always found the bury method to be a lot of work up front, and the spit method to be constantly work throughout.

    It's a, "do you want it in the head or the gut?" Scenario.

  • PeachCoDawgPeachCoDawg Posts: 77 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @FirePlugDawg said:

    @PeachCoDawg said:

    @moos said:
    Most traditional and probably well known is the Hawaiian method where you wrap the pig in banana leaves.

    Basics are:
    Dig a hole (keep the dirt)
    Line it with rocks
    Build a wood fire
    Burn it down to coals
    Place preseason pig wrapped in banana leaves with stuffed cavity (citrus, etc) on coals
    Cover with dirt
    Crack beer and come back in 8-12 hours for delicious, tasty meat

    Having done it this way and others, there's No real advantage, imo. Just a different way to do it. Find the way you like, get good at it. Experiment with other ways (or don't.)

    That's the way to do it. Actually in Hawaii, they slather the hog with mayonnaise (don't ask me), but when it comes out the mayo is gone. Can't taste it, nothing like that. I thought that was weird. I'd use this exact method, except use a good rub instead of mayo, and you can use cheesecloth to wrap instead of banana peel. I'm a pit guy but this is a great way to cook a hog. Just falls apart

    banana leaves are not peels Also cheesecloth burns, no?

    You're right I meant leaves not peels. To be honest, I just watched. What they used was something that looked like cheesecloth to me. But like I said, it was absolutely SLATHERED in mayo and other spices. The hog was placed on rocks that were heated for a long time in a fire. The rocks completely covered the coals so you'd be OK there. When the hog was pulled out, nothing was burned.

  • BigGAdawgBigGAdawg Posts: 379 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @moos said:

    @FirePlugDawg said:

    @PeachCoDawg said:

    @moos said:
    Most traditional and probably well known is the Hawaiian method where you wrap the pig in banana leaves.

    Basics are:
    Dig a hole (keep the dirt)
    Line it with rocks
    Build a wood fire
    Burn it down to coals
    Place preseason pig wrapped in banana leaves with stuffed cavity (citrus, etc) on coals
    Cover with dirt
    Crack beer and come back in 8-12 hours for delicious, tasty meat

    Having done it this way and others, there's No real advantage, imo. Just a different way to do it. Find the way you like, get good at it. Experiment with other ways (or don't.)

    That's the way to do it. Actually in Hawaii, they slather the hog with mayonnaise (don't ask me), but when it comes out the mayo is gone. Can't taste it, nothing like that. I thought that was weird. I'd use this exact method, except use a good rub instead of mayo, and you can use cheesecloth to wrap instead of banana peel. I'm a pit guy but this is a great way to cook a hog. Just falls apart

    banana leaves are not peels Also cheesecloth burns, no?

    Ive never used cheese cloth for this, but the idea is to protect it from the dirt, whatever you use. Burying it prevents burning as it cuts off the oxygen flow, so you just get smoldering, consistent heat. which is what you want in cooking a pig like that.

    I always found the bury method to be a lot of work up front, and the spit method to be constantly work throughout.

    It's a, "do you want it in the head or the gut?" Scenario.

    Split the difference with a good quality motorized spit. It leaves more energy for 12 oz. curls.

  • BigGAdawgBigGAdawg Posts: 379 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @DirtDawg said:
    @FirePlugDawg -- however you do it, please invite my fat ass over to sample. I'll bring plenty of beer to go 'round!

    I'll bring the southern style potato salad, a couple of gallons of sweet tea, and some more beer too. I just finished lunch and this thread is making me hungry again.

  • FirePlugDawgFirePlugDawg Posts: 324 ✭✭✭ Junior

    Going through my profile I noticed this (my) OP had been Flagged by someone as Spam. Why would an OP about cooking a pig be considered spam? Oh, wait.....

  • ghostofuga1ghostofuga1 Posts: 864 ✭✭✭✭✭ Graduate

    @FirePlugDawg said:
    Going through my profile I noticed this (my) OP had been Flagged by someone as Spam. Why would an OP about cooking a pig be considered spam? Oh, wait.....

    Go back to @moos and my instructions.

    Instead of a pig, wrap 100 cans of Spam in banana leaves and tin foil. Drink beer until the cans pop open.

    Crack beer and give a one finger salute to whoever "Spammed" you. Ain't got nuthin' on you Bro!!!

  • BullyDawgBullyDawg Posts: 302 ✭✭✭ Junior

    @FirePlugDawg said:
    Going through my profile I noticed this (my) OP had been Flagged by someone as Spam. Why would an OP about cooking a pig be considered spam? Oh, wait.....

  • JRT812JRT812 Posts: 939 ✭✭✭✭ Senior

    Been away for a moment, but good advice here that was already stated. It was a bucket list thing for me to do and I recommend going to the local BBQ joint haha. It was a ton of work prepping the hog. Cleaned up the pig, dug a hole, stuffed the pig with vegetables, wired banana leaves around it, and put steel plates on top for heat. It came out well, but the prep work and pulling meat after a long night with friends made me want to stick to smoking chickens, ribs, butts, etc.

    Wouldn’t take the experience back, but don’t foresee me doing it again

  • DirtDawgDirtDawg Posts: 55 ✭✭✭ Junior

    .> @FirePlugDawg said:

    I've seen the tail end of it - a pig in the ground cooked through - I know it is a real thing, but do not know the steps. Is the seasoning all dry rub, as I would think mop basting wouldn't be possible. Flavor wise, is there an advantage to this method versus a spit or grill cooked pig?

    Dammit, man! Wife just bragged on my slow-cooked, smoked ribs which led to me getting swindled into cooking a pig for July 4th. I'm thankful for the advice given to your post. We'll be lucky to walk away alive.

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