Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Canterbury Mischief

Oink! Double Up, Oink! Oink! (gun in mouth)

So this last weekend myself, Smokeador and J. Smokeknee attempted to, and eventually succeeded at, cooking a stuffed whole pig in my backyard…in the ground. It was quite a bit of work. *Note. When I say “quite a bit” I mean it in the classical dictionary sense of the term. Quite a bit of work equaling roughly one metric shitload. It was so much work I can't even begin to explain. That is a lie because IT BEGINS NOW!

*note: This is going to be a long post so just get over it already. This thing took up 3 straight days of my life so just sit back and get ready for mild amusement at its finest.


Bear Grylls one said (last week) that a journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step. For me, the step of my pig journey began by buying a mustache. (?)

At 5:30 or so Smokeador came over from Dallas and shortly thereafter J. Smokeknee arrived as well. We had a 30 minute board meeting, and various directives and policys were both, passed by a majority of the Board, and implemented. (none of this happened)

Friday was a lot of work for the trio. We started with what we knew was going to be the real shit job of digging the hole. I do not recommend digging holes in a very serious way. Very serious. Its slightly akward on the back, and its terrible for your mustache. I got dirt in my hair. And in my pants.

But it really wasn’t all that bad and it felt good to have accomplished something. Even if that something drastically lowered property values. It took a little over an hour but we eventually did it.


Thereafter, J. Smokeknee and I went provision hunting for like 3 hours. 3 HOURS! I haven't been on a shopping trip like that since 9/11 hiyo! (BLAM)

Home Depot:

Grill grate for pig to rest on
Mesquite: 5 bags (we should have bought 20)
Cotton thread
Lighter fluid
Propane accessories


Mixed Salad
Italian dressing
Green peppers
Yellow and red peppers
1000 feet of aluminum foil
Black pepper
Spice mix

Tom Thumb:

Sweet Potatoes

J. Smokeknee’s house:

Paper plates
Plastic Forks and such
Chicken wire and pliers


Propane tank
Finally we finished and we made it home safe with a lot of provisions and a hunger for meat. Back at the house we pretty much put all of the refrigerated items up and went to eat at the Silver Fox. It was way past ten when we got there. Our waitress hated us. There was mention of a “4 forks salad”. Hilarious. Good times had by all except for the waitress. Moving right along

Saturday starts at 9:00 am with Smokeador waking everyone up claiming he has doughnuts and coffee, which he did in fact have. Smokeador manned the fire and J. Smokeknee and myself cut vegetables. See below.

Next we had to awaken the Duke.

(The duke is kind of an A hole)

Anyway, we prepped him by rubbing his body with Italian dressing, pepper, and a store bought spice blend. (the exact blend is a secret) We then stuffed him full of vegetables, and J. Smokeknee sewed him up. We used a nail as the needle and tied the cotton thread directly to the flesh. This was AWESOME.

We then wrapped him in about 500 feet of foil. Over and over and under and over and under and over and under and under and around and over and under.

Next we placed him on his grill rack, and tied the grill rack to the chicken wire which served as handles for the pig contraption. This was ingenious, (thanks PSmoke). We lowered him in the ground, covered him with coals, and waited.

A TCU game, and a few lies later, we pulled him out. He was not ready to be eaten however. Smokeador sums it up pretty good below, but we bought charcoal and repeated the process until Sunday at 11:30, when as can be seen below, He came out crazy delicious.


This weekend was a long weekend, but it was very much worth the effort. Was there a fail? Yes. Very much there was an extreme fail on Saturday night. Some might say that it was not a fail because we eventually succeeded in doing what we set out to do, which was to cook the pig. But that’s wasn’t really the goal. It occurred to me Sunday night while eating a pulled pork bbq sandwich that the meat and vegetables, whilst crazy delicious, did not really gain any sort of flavor by being cooked in the ground. I have had seasoned braised pork before which tasted the exact same, which I made in my crock pot. This being said, why would you cook a pig in the ground at all and not just his shoulder in the crock pot or in the oven? The only real reason you’d cook at pig in the ground is for show, and so that a lot of people can eat him all at once. This was what we set out to do and failed at. I’m not upset about the fail but chalk it up to a learning experience. If we do this again, which we will, out of spite for the Duke, we will win.

Things we did wrong:

The hole was too big. I think the point here is too create a perfect box in the ground which can hold just the pig and enough coals to cook him. If you could just barely fit your pig in a ice chest and then poor coals all over him, then your hole should be about the size of that ice chest.

Not enough coals. We bought 5 bags. We should have realistically had about 10. That would have done it probably. We also bought wet wood from Home Depot, which really was a big problem in getting the wood to cook down.

We ran out of time. We should have been up at around 7:00 that morning getting the fire going and checking stuff out. If we had been up that early we probably would have had more time to get more wood. As it happened however we got up at around 9:45 and by the time we knew that we probably didn’t have enough wood, the party was already 7 hours away so there was no time to fix it and we had to just hope. Hope couldn’t get it done and thus fail.

What we did right:

We ended up doing a lot of things correctly. We gave ourselves enough time to dig the hole, we all drank wine, I ran across the coals WITH my boots on, we didn't give up etc etc. However, in the end we did do one thing VERY right. Attempting it. Why the hell not? As Coach Gary Patterson once said when asked why he chose to play a team the size and caliber of the University of Texas, he stated that if we didn’t play them, somewhere down the line in the future we’d all look back and say “Why the hell didn’t we?”. Hardcore. I’m glad that we tried. Really excellent weekend. Lot of work. I’ll probably never forget it.

Thanks to everyone who came and everyone who helped. - SmokeHopper

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Monday, November 24, 2008

The Ballad of The Duke as told by El Smokeador

Success, failure and ultimate success was the overriding theme of the weekend. When the idea of roasting a pig underground in Fort Worth was first proposed, I must say I was more than intrigued. As the week went on and word began to spread what would be happening at the residence of smokehopper, I was met with looks of suspicion and variations of "Why?"

The answer "We're cooking a pig.......in the ground."

Arrived at Smokehopper's house at 5 on Friday, no tools in hand and the belief that it would take at least 3 to 4 hours for the hole to be dug.

We had decided that the future temporary resting place of the Duke needed to be 3ft deep, 5 ft long and about 3ft wide.
(The Hole)
The soil was soft that night my friends. One and a half hours later what has been called "the best hole in Fort Worth that night," was completed.
(El Smokeador, Smokehopper Y J. Smokeknee)
It was not an easy task, (to quote smokehopper, "Thats bullshit, there's no way anyone could dig to China") but we were finished for the night well before expected. A nice dinner of old fashioneds and steak awaited us. Thank you Silver Fox for accommodating a table of boisterous ditch diggers, minutes before closing nonetheless. You establishment is truly top notch. Call us.

El Smokeador arose before young Smokehopper the following morning. Things were slow moving, but the fire had to be started.
Fire started at 10am anticipating that the pig would be in the ground at Noon. Probably should have picked up a couple more bags of Big John's Wood (shameless plug, always use Big John's Wood), but being the first time, we didnt know. Shoveling the coals out of the pit was described as 1) hot as (various expletives), 2)at least 1,000,000 degrees kelvin 3)hotter than 1000 burning suns. We decided that it was somewhere between 1) and 2).
Pig went in around 12:45 and was covered in coals and dirt by 1pm. Smokehopper went to the football game, I took a much deserved shower. The next 13 hours would prove to be the most trying of the weekend. To quote Mike Rhyner's Petty Theft "The waaaaaaiiiiiting is the hardest part."
(Onions, New Potatoes, Carrots, Various Bell Peppers and Sweet Potatoes)

Original plan was to have the Duke out of the ground for the 20-30 attendees to enjoy at 9pm. Being the ornery sonofabitch that he was, the Duke was not ready to feed the masses.
Failure. At this point, much imbibing in local spirits had taken place and a decision needed to be made. Not many good decisions come from local spirits, but this time one did. I sent a close friend of young smokehopper who we knew would come through in a tight spot, to the store for "as many bags of charcoal as they f'ing have."
30 minutes later, we were back in business. At this point it should be pointed out that wood is preferred, but charcoal worked perfectly fine. Quantity is the biggest issue. The Duke was back in the ground leaving us with fear in our hearts and a pang in our stomachs. Tomorrow could not come soon enough.

With much trepidation, The Duke was removed from his temporary home at 11:30 Sunday morning.
As the layers upon layers of foil were removed, the smell told us we had done well. Without further ado, I give you.......The Duke.

Many many thanks to J. Smokeknee for guiding El Smokeador y Smokehopper through the weekend and providing your expertise in the way of the pig.

Smokehopper post to follow.

I should also add, we would love to hear from you in the comments section of each post. If you have a gmail account, you can comment. We would like input from everyone that has something to say.

~El Smokeador~

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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

An Encounter with the Duke

A pig has been found in West Texas. It will enter the ground as a good, strong, not so smart pig and arise out of the smoke like a phoenix from the topsoil of Fort Worth. Details to follow.

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Whimsington Plaza

I put my hand up on your dove, when you dove I dove we dove! (slowly puts gun to head).

So this last Saturday, the night after I attended my very first rap concert, we had a dove BBBQ at Dirk's Road to celebrate an excellent dove season at the Pate land and also to drink wine. (the Extra B is For BYOBB). It was well attended and quite the shindig. Matt was there so there are plenty of entertaining pictures and such, as well as quite a few embarrassing videos. I believe that there is even a video of Mason and I hugging it out. OMG I’m so humiliated.
Anyway to the Cooking, and Beyond!

The process:

1) We killed quite a few birds this season so there was lots of butchery to be had. At 12:00 Shelby, Lane and I, breasted the dove. Having a surgeon there was helpful. Of course I’m talking about me because I’m the surgeon of cool. (kills self)
2) We took the breast meat off, split them in half and marinated them in a homemade Italian style vinaigrette:

1 tablespoon garlic powder1 tablespoon onion powder1 tablespoon white sugar2 tablespoons dried oregano1 teaspoon ground black pepper1/4 teaspoon dried thyme1 teaspoon dried basil1 tablespoon dried parsley1 teaspoon salt1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes 1/4 cup preferred vinegar2/3 cup olive oil Combine vinegar, oil and 2 tablespoons of the mix when you want to make the dressing.

3) We did a rough chop on two large yellow onions, a lb of jalapenos, a block of cream cheese, and we split two packages of bacon right down the middle. We made three duplicate stacks of the items and proceeded to wrap as follows: Onion, breast, cream cheese cube, jalapeno, wrap, and skewer. Repeat. Or should I say RINSE and repeat?!? What what (I shouldn’t have) We used long wooden skewers so we could flip 5 at a time. We did not soak them in water because that would have been prudent/wise.

4) We took this all out to the land with charcoal, which is really my new favorite way to grill, I had always thought gas was easier but charcoal is great, truly. Anyways, the skewers all burned up when we cooked but it didnt matter, if anything it added a little smokey flavor to the mix (shoutout to El Smokeador)
The Pics:
Dr. Shelby and Dr. Mustache


Beautiful Day
Mason Brought Tamales!
The Lords of Whimsington Plaza
Good Times!

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