I hung out at the 2010 North Carolina state barbecue championship contest in Mount Airy until about midnight. Pig smoking is an all night affair. I told the barbecue guys to have good smokes and headed back home to do some barbecue writing and to edit photos.
That mobile blogging thing was harder than flipping pigs with the slow load speed up there in the NC mountains. I think I could have walked the 80 or so miles home before photos would have uploaded on site.
Fortunately, I met a Mount Airy local, Fred Parker, and he sent me some barbecue contest photos. So, now you can see a whole hog barbecue contest the morning after.
Wow. Now that's a pretty smoked pig. They definately look tastier in the morning after they are smoked than at night when they are raw pig.
Whole hogs call for big smokers - of course. There were a range of different smokers at the 2010 NC state barbecue championship. Some of them were store bought and others were handmade smokers.
The pitmasters watch those temperatures and check out the meat. There's done and there's ready. It's a talent to get smoked whole hog smoked pork just perfect.
Once the pigs are done, there's a lot of chopping. In North Carolina, barbecue pork is typically chopped (not pulled) and then sauced. When you have top notch pig smokers like at this state championship, the secret and the win can be in the sauce which in vinegar based with various amounts of red (tomato product) depending on whether you are east or west of the North Carolina barbecue divide line.