For some time we have been thinking about keeping a pig again. We have an area of ground which has a heavy cover of bramble growing, according to Permaculture law there are only two ways of getting rid of bramble, dig it out, well neither of us fancy that job, or get a pig.
Before embarking on any enterprise we like to make sure that we can do exactly what we wish to with the end product.
Keeping a pig for meat means finding out the best way to feed it without being heavily reliant on pig nuts, feeding any animal exclusively on concentrates results in 'soft' meat with little texture.
So we have to plan well ahead of what we can grow well and in quantity to supplement the feed.
Root veg do well here and pigs like them, Jerusalem Artichokes also grow well, we have a bumper crop of them, but we know that pigs do not like them. Peas and beans go down well and most fruit.
The next thing to consider is where can we get the pig slaughtered, the local factory is a non starter for several reasons, the butcher in our local town charges far too much so it will mean traveling some distance for slaughtering. Butchering we will do ourselves, the main way of butchering here is to whisk everything through a band saw.
Then there is the processing, we will want to make bacon, ham, bathchaps and sausages.
We also have half a Gloucester Old Spot pig coming soon from a friend ,so we thought it was time to start the learning process for processing the carcass.
We thought that sausages would be a good place to start. We hanker over a decent sausage, we have tried most of the ones on sale, including the Organic ones from the Farmers Market but none of them taste as the good old sausage used to. Sausages are something that had gone from our menu.
A quick look on the internet gave us exactly what we wanted, a recipe for traditional pork sausages.
I am lucky enough to have a good Kenwood mixer so I ordered and received the mincing and sausage making attachment.