Sunday, April 29, 2007

Riesling, mmm...

The pig was Asian inspired. Served with stir fried brocoli with black beans and shitake mushrooms. The rice pilaf stuffing. A salad of steamed eggplants marinated in sweet chili sauce, Thai basel, ginger, sesame oil...

The wines were a couple of German Rieslings with some residual sweetness, perfect with the sweet, slightly hot food. These were from Weingut Rappenhof in Rheinhessen, a Spätlese 1996 Alsheimer Fischerpfad, and an Auslese 1990 Niersteiner Pettenthal. The '96 was a great match, the '90 was amazing.


Piggy II

There's something about preparing a whole animal that makes me reverent...


Piggy I

The pig is dried inside and out and rubbed inside with a mixture of ground cumin, a little less ground coriander, even less ground fennel seed and some Maldon salt. And a pinch of cayenne pepper.Half of the spices are mixed to a paste with 30 - 40 grams of butter.
The pig is stuffed with a pilaf of rice and wild rice - with shallots, fennel, finely chopped ginger and garlic, salt, pepper and another pinch of cayenne pepper. The belly is lined with Thai basel and lemon grass before sewing the whole thing together.
After a rubdown with the spice paste, the pig is ready for the barbecue. A ball of tin foil keeps the mouth open while it cooks, so there's room for a (small) apple later on.


This little piggy

I had planned to serve a buffet of cakes and desserts for my birthday last weekend. While totally enjoying filling my cart with chocolate, double cream, mangoes, limes, and other necessary dessert ingredients, I happened to catch a glimpse of three beautiful, fresh piglets hanging in the butcher's department.

Raised in France, the piglets were sold at about 14 lbs., instead of the 45-pounders usually sold as suckling pig here in Denmark. Besides needing a fire and spit arrangement - and 7 or 8 hours - to cook it, the older pig has a completely different taste. That ruined the cake plan, I couldn't leave the shop pigless. Suckling pig for birthday dinner....