You’re invited to our first pig roast of the year which is coming up this weekend.
Needless to say, you need a pig. Figure two pounds of meat per person. More if you’re feeding them all day long, as properly cooked pig — I swear — creates ravenous appetites, even with lots of sides on hand. I saw at the pig roast last year a hundred-pound-dripping-wet female (not a metaphor — she was wet from skinny-dipping in the Mill Pond) eat three pounds of pork over the course of the afternoon, according to one of the servers who dished out the pig straight off the roasting pit.
It didn’t slow her down — she danced in all three of the contradances that day. And she and one of the gardening lads went off late that night to one of the yurts for some private exercise. Must have been a good time — she got pregnant, they got handfasted at the next full moon, and moved to a farm in New Zealand a year later with another bairn on the way.
And German-style potato salad. And oodles of cole slaw, again German style. And yeast rolls with butter. And strawberry shortcake with vanilla ice cream. Oh of course ale and cider. The summer ale was a German-style wheat that Bjorn, our Brewmaster of long standing, had brewed in consultation with Gus, our Estate Head Gardener and pig roast planner extraordinaire.
Not just any pig but one suitable for roasting over an open fire or buried in coals for essentially steam cooking. We favour the latter, as everyone thinks it tastes better even though it’s far less impressive as it’s a process that largely invisible.
First you start with the right breed of pig. Some are good for roasting, some less so. We use the Red Wattle, the Rolls Royce of breeds for this purpose. It’s an expensive, really expensive, breed but oh when slow cooked with lots of cider drizzled over it to keep it moist as its tended, it’s easily the best pork you’ll ever eat!
Add in some great music — we hire several Appalachian bands that play bluegrass, Celtic and such, hold the party on the greensward which is an easy walk to the Mill Pond which is perfect for skinny dipping, and make sure there’s enough to feed both the serving crew and your guests. We end up having to use a fairly large pig as there’s never enough meat when we use a smaller one such as most pig roasts use.
I’ll bet that you’re hungry, aren’t you?