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Roast-Pig-Hd-art - 3/11/17


"A Roast Pig's Head (named Bernàrd)" by Mistress Leoba of Lecelade.


NOTE: See also the files: Medvl-Sauces-art, Sauce-Persley-art, pig-heads-msg, whole-pig-msg, roast-pork-msg, pork-msg, p-pigs-msg, HC-butchers-art.





This article was added to this set of files, called Stefan's Florilegium, with the permission of the author.


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Copyright to the contents of this file remains with the author or translator.


While the author will likely give permission for this work to be reprinted in SCA type publications, please check with the author first or check for any permissions granted at the end of this file.


Thank you,

Mark S. Harris...AKA:..Stefan li Rous

stefan at florilegium.org



You can find more from this author in her blog at: https://leobalecelad.wordpress.com


A Roast Pig's Head (named Bernàrd)

by Mistress Leoba of Lecelade


At a recent feast I ran, I decided to serve a pig's head breathing fire as a spectacle at a feast. I had never cooked a pig's head before; and I wasn't sure how it would be received. However when I mentioned it to people they got very excited so I decided I had to go ahead with it.


The first issue I had was obtaining a pig's head. They aren't commonly asked for, after all. However the butcher I go to for events was able to source one, and didn't give me too weird a look; it's not the strangest thing I've asked him to get for me.


The word got around the event that there would be a pig's head and a few people came to meet it, which is how the head acquired the name Bernàrd.


I've never cooked a pig's head before, and in the end I decided roasting was my best option.  I knew how to roast pork, and I figured a head would roast pretty much the same.  But I honestly didn't think anyone would want to eat it – I just thought people would simply look at it, enjoy it, and that would be it.  So I didn't pay too much attention to the preparation.  I simply gave Bernàrd a wash and patted him dry, then rubbed him with a commercial barbeque sauce to give him some colour.



Unfortunately the spill I had prepared to stick in his mouth and light, so he appeared to be breathing fire, became too damp and simply smouldered. So he was sent out nibbling on some parsley.


And he came back with no meat left on his bones – virtually everyone at the feast wanted to try a piece of Bernard, and the queue went out of the hall. There were even fights about who got the last of the cheek.


I will certainly be serving a roast pig's head once again. However next time I will be using a more period appropriate glaze, such as a Lumbard Mustard.


If you want to cook a pig's head, when you order, make sure you specify that the cheeks and ears remain, as these are sometimes removed. After that, it's the same as roasting a normal piece of pork – roast in around a 200 degrees C oven, for around 45 minutes per kilo – it will probably take at least 2 and a half hours.  I would also put the head on a rack, so the head doesn't sit in rendered fat while it's cooking.  This will keep the skin crisp and ensure the flesh doesn't go rubbery.


And prepare for the fights over the cheek.




NOTE: My brother Laurel, Rurik Farsekr would like to make it known that pig's heads are quite difficult to carve, especially the nose, which proved quite popular. (And Rurik is my bro because we were apprentices together under the same Laurel.)


Copyright 2017 by Christine Lawrie. <clawrie1 at bigpond.net.au>. Permission is granted for republication in SCA-related publications, provided the author is credited. Addresses change, but a reasonable attempt should be made to ensure that the author is notified of the publication and if possible receives a copy.


If this article is reprinted in a publication, please place a notice in the publication that you found this article in the Florilegium. I would also appreciate an email to myself, so that I can track which articles are being reprinted. Thanks. -Stefan.


<the end>

Formatting copyright © Mark S. Harris (THLord Stefan li Rous).
All other copyrights are property of the original article and message authors.

Comments to the Editor: stefan at florilegium.org