If you can’t stand the thought of eating a cute, intelligent and furry animal, leave this post now for your own comfort. To this day, I have avoided cooking authentic lechon de leche (defined as the piglets still being nourished ONLY by their mothers milk) due to residual pangs of guilt about taking a piglet so young and roasting it. But I am a carnivore, and these animals are raised for food. So many purveyors claim to be selling lechon de leche, but if the cleaned and cooked weight of the lechon de leche is greater than say 2 to 3 kilos, including all bones and head, then it isn’t REALLY a lechon de leche. The smallest pigs we roast commercially at Zubuchon are our “Zubulight” offering, that start off with piglets with a live weight of say 11-13 kilos, and a cooked weight of say 5-7 kilos, with stuffing. For tomorrow’s experiment, we have purchased this newly weaned spotted piglet weighing 6-7 kilos and I plan to roast it unstuffed. In fact, had I remembered to bring some of the bounty of truffle salt and oils in our pantry in Manila, I could have experimented with a Roast Truffled Suckling Pig a la Marketman. Instead, I will just do a base case roasted lechon de leche…currently dubbed the Zubuleche.
I suppose I could have gone a kilo or so smaller, but this is what our purveyor said was the best organic, semi-native piglet in the market today. I plan to clean the piglet tomorrow, and try and cook it flattened out, instead of roasting it impaled on a bamboo pole. The objective is to obtain a crisp skin and flavorful, tender meat. At some Spanish restaurants, they make a big deal of being able to cut up the skin with a plate… It’s a rather pricey experiment, and the resulting meal will come in at roughly PHP1,100 pesos per kilo of meat, nearly 3x the price of regular lechon, so there MUST be a notable difference in the quality of the zubuleche to justify its nosebleed price… Stay tuned for the results of our Zubuleche experiment…
And yes, I know the spotted pig is cute and innocent.