Monday, April 15, 2013

Hog Butchering - Guatemala Style

(Note: This post is about raw meat and contains pictures of such. Consider yourself warned.)

One of the projects we got into in Guatemala was hog butchering. Since I've written about my family's hog butchering numerous times, I thought I'd share some how they did butchering there.


The hog arrived already killed and gutted. The men left their building project to skin the hog and help cut it up. Back home, we always butcher the hogs in the cold winter weather - never 100 degree weather! But it couldn't be helped.


As quickly as possible the hog was made into small chunks and placed in the freezer. Not wrapped or anything, just dumped in. Then the men returned to the building and the women took over.

I've shared lots of photos of our home butchering projects in the past, but to be honest, I don't really do the butchering. My role is meat wrapper, lunch maker, baby sitter, and, of course,  photo taker. But here the women folk did the majority of the butchering.

Holly and Kendra got out one chunk of meat at a time out of the freezer. They de-boned, trimmed, and wrapped the meat and returned it to the freezer. Somehow I missed getting any photos of the rest of the day. They made sausage using the meat grinder on Holly's Kitchen Aid mixer. Since they were doing small batches, Holly added various types of spices to different batches. The sausage I sampled was delicious!

All the fat was placed in a pan and cooked down to make lard. The meat cutting was completed by evening but the lard making continued into the night. The result was some beautiful white lard.

The bones were collected into a huge pot and boiled for hours. The next day the broth was made into pon haus. We sampled the result at breakfast. Yummy!

A lot of work but some great meat as a result! And I enjoyed seeing how hog butchering can be done in a kitchen with few butchering tools.


  1. Doing it the old fashioned way, and the best thing is YALL know what was put into that meat..


  2. My dad has told me some hog butchering stories from his childhood in Guatemala. His grandfather butchered a hog every weekend to sell. Dad told me they would lay the pig up on a large rock and bleed him out. A lady would be there collecting the blood as it ran out of the pig which she used to make blood sausage. She also used the organs for the blood sausage. Sounds kind of yucky to me but dad said it was really good. I always like hearing how things are done in other places and by other people. :)


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