Dreaming of Piggies

Well I wish I could dream.  Lack of sleep means lack of ambition for me these days, but that doesn’t mean I don’t still think about our upcoming pig endeavor, it just means not much housework being done lately and no Christmas decorations packed away yet.

But back to the piggies.  I’m so excited (and a little nervous) that we are going to be adding pigs to our little farm this year.  The kids are excited too and have started coming up with some funny names like Frankenswine, Peter Porker and his alter ego Swinerman, Albert Einswine.  We’ve been accumulating pallets to make a fence, researching breeds, checking on prices, looking at feed, and researching all the different ways people raise their pigs.  There’s so much to read and sometimes I get overwhelmed with it all.  The main thing that I keep reading over and over again is that they are intelligent and need to be trained just like you would train a dog.  Not that they are going to be doing tricks or anything, but they have a hierarchy within their groups and we need to show them that we are the alpha and they aren’t above us in that hierarchy.

Some people claim that pigs are scary and they are vicious and that they never go into the pig pen because the pigs charge or bite and you should never ever bring children in a pig pen but I don’t think that properly socialized pigs that have adequate room will be aggressive for no reason.  They also need things to play with so they don’t get bored and destructive.  I haven’t read too much about what people give their pigs for them to “play” but I’m sure I will find something in the next few months.

Another part of my research is learning how to butcher a pig.  I’m still not sure about the slaughter part yet but butchering is something I can definitely do! Hubby just bought me a new butchering set with all the different knives I could ever ask for.  It even has a bone saw and a sharpening steel so I’m all set there.  I found a great tutorial on Youtube one night, The Scott Rea Project, and this guy has lots of info on Facebook, on YouTube, and on Twitter.  He has been butchering for years and has really good videos on butchering domestic animals as well as wild game and he has some recipes as well.  Kind of a funny guy and reminds me of my friend Doc Rock (not his real name) with his heavy metal references. Anyway, check out some of his videos and let me know some of your favorite sites or videos on butchering…if you have any.

I’m certainly more excited about the end result than all the work that is going to go into the pigs and I have such grand plans for the meat that we end up with. I had a mouthwatering list made up a while ago but i find myself adding to it all the time and by the time I’m finished with my list we’ll need about 6 pigs to do all the things I want to do.  Porchetta, bacon, guanciale, sausages, chops, pancetta, roasts, chicharones, hams, proscuito, hocks, liver and a big ole pig roast.    Now I just need to get  those little porkers and start making them yummy!

Have a beautiful day everyone, and learn something new and exciting today.

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