This week's edition of Cooking With Fighters is a special one that comes from UFC commentator extraordinaire, Joe Rogan. It takes us all the way through the cooking process with photos, starting from when the wild boar was harvested from the land by Joe, to the end, when it's all plated up, ready to be eaten.
*All photos courtesy of Joe Rogan*
Rogan has been hunting his own meat for some time now, and has a freezer full of venison and wild boar. He raises his own chickens for the eggs, and he gets his fruits and veggies from organic local sources. An avid hunter, he says he eats everything he kills. This is his recipe for wild smoked ham.
1 gallon water
1 ½ cups kosher salt
2 cups brown sugar
1 wild boar ham (bone in)
You marinate the ham, in fact, you're actually brining it. Submerge it in the brine for 5 days. Take it out and smoke it at 200 degrees until it hits 155-160 degrees internal temperature. That's at least 8 hours of smoking time, most likely more. It's unbelievably delicious when it's done and completely worth all the effort.
It's a huge pain in the ass while it's going on because you have to continually add wood to the smoker and you have to check on it frequently to make sure the smoke is still coming up and that the temperature is good. You also need to keep checking the internal temperature of the ham.
Wild ham is so much different than domestic ham. It's a much healthier, darker meat. The animal is healthier because they're eating fresh roots and shrubs and whatever they can get hold of. Pigs are omnivores, so they eat just about anything. In fact, one of the reasons they need to eradicate them from certain areas is because the ground nesting birds are having their nests destroyed and their eggs and chicks are being eaten. Pigs are fucking ruthless, but they're super delicious.
Remember those TV ad campaigns, ‘Pork, the other white meat'? Well, pork is not supposed to be white. That's a sick animal. It's a sick, malnourished animal that's basically been kept from exercise. They're just not healthy. That's why they're so pale. When you eat a wild pig, it's a much darker animal.
I eat it with some seeded mustard. I don't eat anything on the side, I just eat it by itself. I must have eaten a pound and a half of it in one sitting. It was a giant ham. The pig was about 200 pounds or so when I shot it. I washed it down with a beer.
I used a Weston propane smoker, but I don't think I'm going to use that in the future. I'm going to get a Klose smoker from Texas. They're like the gold standard for BBQ smokers and grills. I don't have to tell you because you live there, but Texas has the best BBQ on the planet. They've got it down to a science and they know how to make a goddamned smoker.
You can follow Joe via his Twitter account, @JoeRogan