Part-Two in the Cochon de Lait Trilogy.
So you wanna cook meat outdoors like a Cajun?
If you go to Crawfish Guy, he has a clear recipe for Cochon de Lait on his website to be cooked in a Cajun Microwave.
RECIPE FOR COCHON DE LAIT (Young Suckling Roast Pig)
Have a butcher clean and dress a young pig, ranging from 35-90 lbs. Make sure all hair and blood is removed. Remove head. Trim feet to fit in microwave. Stuff pig with lots of fresh garlic on both sides. Coat in a seasoning mix (i.e., Tony Chachare’s or some other brand of salt, red and black pepper, onion and garlic salt, and other spices). Place skin side up to start in order to get the skin and grease cooking early. Light a fire of coals or wood on top of microwave (approx 10-20 lbs at a time), being careful not to create too much heat immediately which may burn pig (you may have to keep the lid open or place a piece of tin foil over the pig while fire takes) or may burn the box. Keep good heat—approx. 225 degrees F to 275 degrees F: once you go over 275 you risk burning the box – for about 4-6 hours– total amount of charcoal needed may be 60-70 lbs for 4x2x2 box. Check pig every 45 minutes, turning approx every hour and a half. Pour 1 can of beer on skin 30 minutes before it is done to create a crispy “crackling” skin. Serve with fresh sweet potatoes, garlic bread and other items, many of which may also be cooked inside microwave. Periodically “screen out” ash from lid as you add more charcoal or wood (ash can serve as an “insulator” and prevent enough heat needed for the cooking process).
Advantages Of The Cajun Microwave
Versus the traditional open pit method of cooking
* Cooks Food 25-40% faster than open pit method (A 50lb pig can be roasted in 4-5 hours instead of 6-8 hours)
* Cooks more efficiently – you use 1-2 bags of charcoal vs. 1/2 chord of wood for in-ground pit method
* Can be used in the city and suburbs since it uses charcoal like a bar-be-que pit
* No need to worry should the weather turn bad – just move the Cajun Microwave under your patio or shed, or even under a tree
* Taste of the cooked meat is as close as you can get to meat roasted in an open pit.
* the weather is not an issue (can’t have a fire in the rain)
* legal in cities where fires are prohibited (cook on your porch or courtyard)
* options such as grills mounted on top of lid and lets you cook “double duty” —large pieces of meat inside the box, burgers, hot dogs, bbq chicken and other items on top-at the same time!
* It is also a wonderful conversation piece – center of attention for your party!
St. Edwards Parish in Metairie, Louisiana welcomed me into their annual Cochon De Lait fold and I experienced some of the best teamwork efforts I’ve seen in years. It was all hands, garlic, beer, knives and port butts galore up and down the work tables. We handled 3,200 pounds of pork butts and 2,000 pounds of pork skins to make cracklings (which sold out before I even had a chance to know they were being sold, which should tell you how delicious they are!)
The fundraiser draws astounding numbers of people and nets several hundred thousand dollars for the church.
Oh, boy, this was a fun one–we just came back from visiting the family in New Orleans a few days ago, and were treated to some amazing homemade Cajun food. Thanks for the story and the wonderful pictures.