balinese pig

BBQ Whole Hog - Balinese Style

Babi Guling BBQ

Balinese BBQ Roasted Pig Instructions

This last December, 2017, I had the pleasure of visiting Bali, Indonesia and learning the tricks behind BBQ whole hogs. This is a tradition going back thousands of years. The methods haven't changed over the years at all.

1. Get a medium pig weighing about 120 pounds. The Balinese slaughter and process the animal on site providing a true farm to table experience. Chefs also collect the blood and sausage from the animal to create blood sausage. We won't go into detail about the sausage in this post.

2. Gather the required spices:

  • 80 g fresh turmeric, coarsely chopped
  • 12 birdseye chillies, finely chopped
  • 8 golden shallots, coarsely chopped
  • 5 large garlic cloves
  • 2 large lemongrass stalks, white part only, finely chopped
  • 10 g (2cm piece) ginger, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons coriander seeds, coarsely crushed
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns, finely crushed
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped galangal

3. Use a three yard sharp durable bamboo stick and skewered the entire pig from tail to mouth. A long pole shaped fire safe material can be used instead of bamboo.

4. Blend the spices together and insert into the cavity of the pig. Tie the cavity shut with bamboo, yarn or anything sturdy yet pliable.

5. The Balinese didn't do this but I am adding it here to provide the skin with more taste. Rub the exterior of the hog with mustard and add turmeric, salt and pepper, ginger, garlic and shallots. The mustard will bind the spices to the hog and create a truly excellent exterior.

6. Lay the wooden or bamboo pole onto a bbq pit with a lot of burning coals or wood on the right side. Attach the pole to a device that can turn the entire pig. Turn slowly for 4-5 hours. Be patient and wait until the skin starts peeling. Use a thermometer to make sure the shoulders have hit 165 degrees Fahrenheit. 

7. Eat and enjoy!