How a challenge led to a pig out
Updated: October 14, 2012 12:49PM
A couple of months ago, my son issued a challenge to a friend of mine, who is a chef.
And by chef, I mean she is the greatest barbecue chef on the planet with the most amazing barbecue skills, arms fully sleeved in tattoos, and clearly an adventurous spirit. She can cook lots of stuff, but as far as I’m concerned, barbecue is her specialty.
The challenge? Roast a pig. In my back yard.
I’m not going to lie. I’d had a couple of cocktails when this challenge was issued, so of course, my response was “YES! Let’s cook a pig in the back yard!”
As I’m writing this, there is a 6-foot black iron smoker, complete with electric rotisserie motor, parked at the back edge of my backyard. As well as a 100+ pound pig on ice in a baby pool, inside a screen tent. My daughter is at work peeling 50 pounds of potatoes for garlic potato salad. The chef is snapping on latex gloves in preparation for rubbing down the pig with her super-secret rub.
My contribution thus far has been to fret about whether I’m going to clean my house in time for guests to arrive (not looking good) and to buy lots of paper plates and tiki torches. And to “test” the Spotted Cow beer from the New Glarus Brewing Company that I bought in Wisconsin. And also to help pull the 100+ pound pig out of the back of the chef’s car, into a plastic bag, and into a garbage can with wheels so we could get it out back. Any of my neighbors who looked out their windows this afternoon probably got quite a show.
The original plan was to dig a huge hole in the ground, start a fire, and toss the pig into the hole with the fire for about twelve hours. I nixed that when I thought about how much I don’t like manual labor.
Then, there was the build-a-grill-out-of-cinder-blocks concept. I nixed that after I thought about how much I didn’t want to have to carry 100 cinder blocks from my driveway out to the back edge of my yard, and how I didn’t want to have to try getting rid of them afterward. So I rented a grill.
If you read my column regularly, you’ll recall me complaining about some neighbors who live across from my back yard, across Flagg Creek, who would sit outside until all hours hootin’ and hollerin’, and this pig roast was, in my mind, the ultimate revenge. I did entertain the notion of setting up a gigantic fan, one of those huge, 5-feet-in-diameter things, to blow the pork-roasting-smoke-and-delicious-aroma across the creek and directly into their partying faces.
It seems, however, that they’ve gone back to college, so I won’t be doing that. Though, now I’m going to spend the night worrying not just about attracting coyotes, but what my neighbors are going to do when they wake up in the middle of the night (we’re putting this pig on the grill around 2 a.m.) to the aroma of roasting pig. I fully expect a visit from Western Springs finest. I may have to bribe them with the promise of a plate of pig. ~.
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