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Apr 9, 2012 11:38 AM

Where to buy a whole pig at a good price?

I'm looking to buy a pig to cook this summer in the ground to feed about 30 people.I was just wondering if anyone knew how much they should cost and if anyone had suggestions on where to get it.

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  1. Abattoir Clement Poissant
    182 Rang Saint-Andre,
    Saint-Philippe QC,
    You can google-map to find where it is. I think the exit @ St. Mathieu off the 15 might be closed for construction, you might have to use the next exit.
    Should be under $2/lb, milk pigs are usually more. I get 3-5 pigs here every summer. You can choose your own on the hoof and they'll butcher it, or you can choose one outta the cold room (faster). They usually have many sizes ready to go.
    I think they're open until 6 weekdays, close earlier on Saturday, and closed Sunday, but maybe call ahead to make sure.
    You can order a whole pig from many butchers, but it will likely be pricier.

    4 Replies
    1. re: porker

      Awesome! I've always dreamed of making my own lechon :) Thanks for the info!

      1. re: Chocolatesa

        Same here - I always dreamed about it, but found it daunting. A few years back, we were at a BBQ festival in New York where I saw Ed Mitchel doing whole hogs.
        It was an epiphany.
        I realized it wasn't rocket science and an Anthony Hopkins movie "Wilderness" came to mind; his character had to battle a bear and he realized that man has done this before. If one man can kill a bear, another man can kill a bear.
        This became my mantra that weekend in NY; If one man can roast a pig, I can roast a pig. I did my first whole hog shortly after.

        1. re: porker

          It does seem like a big job.That's why I'm going the berrying route.The guys will get involved digging the hole and all that. Plus makes for some interesting dinner.I'm happy to hear it's not as expensive as I thought and we may even do a 5-10 bucks a head for the pig and ask people to bring sides potluck style.I google mapped the slaughter house and it's only about a half hour away from me.I also have a small grocery store on upper lachine rd that does there own butchering so I'll ask what kind of price they'll give me before I make the trip out to St-Phillipe.I'll let you guys know what they quote me.Thanks for all the help!

          1. re: chloeaardse

            I used 3 Guys from Miami as a guide
            Made an above-ground pit with cinder blocks and a wire pig rack. Works well.
            Our friends want to do something similar with a lamb, but they live in the Plateau with no yard. We're planning to make a caja china for this and roast on their porch.

            When you choose the pig, just realize the bigger it is, the harder it is to wrangle. I always wanna go big, but then its kinda difficult to get that bad boy outta the car, on the rack, etc. 80lbs isn't bad, 120lbs was my limit.

            If you get it at the abbatoir you might find it has a certain parfum de slaughterhouse (in part because of singeing the hair). Before cooking, I like to hose and scrub lightly with a metal pot scrubber. As the meat cooks, the parfum disappears and you only get the wonderful aroma of pork. I also clean up and trim the cavity a bit more (the kidneys and other organs might be attached - you could ask the butcher to remove if you want).

            Are you digging the hole by hand? Nothing more humbling than digging a hole with pick&shovel!

            Mrs Porker and I got hitched in the South Pacific years ago. We kept smelling burning garbage on these small islands and figured households burned their trash out back. It turned out it was the smell of smouldering banana and palm leaves. People were cooking in the earth (umu) and covering the pit with the leaves. The fresh leaves kept in the heat, but would smoulder, smelling quite a bit.

            I look forward to hear your story.