Friday, January 14, 2011

If Pigs Could Fly

Typical SDT Livestock Quarters
If they could fly, pigs might be able to even the odds, but Calabrians might starve. Yes, pork is the most popular of terrestrial meats here followed by veal, chicken, goat, rabbit, horse. This is a popular time of year for people that raise their own pigs to slaughter a couple and process them into steaks for freezing and sausage/salami for drying.
Our neighbors did that just last weekend. Here they are cooking some meat in a water vat just down the street.
This family has a little garden spot with pig pen along the edge of the village. I was invited to go watch them do the slaughter, but passed. They do it the old fashioned way with a knife, so I passed on that opportunity. When we processed animals on our farm, we either took the steers to a slaughter-house or had a mobile truck come to the farm. They used guns in lieu of knives for the most part.
The neighbors have an extra apartment in our building that they sometimes let their visiting kids use, but more often use it for a cooking and processing space. It is also rigged with overhead hooks to hang salami and salciccia. Our builder dedicated an entire bedroom to sausage storage in his new home!
The family broke for lunch and, of course, had home made wine. I had to sit and try this before starting into the grueling work of photography. This was a good vino rosso. I am one of the few people in the village that buys commercial wine – most everyone makes their own or has friends that make it. Much is very good. 
Because these folks are self-provisioners, they have serious tools for preparing a years worth of food. In addition to a heavy meat grinder and mixer, they have this industrial grade machine for stuffing the skins.
Each sausage is hand tied at the ends and there is a spiked device to poke the skins so air can escape as the meat is injected. Clever!

These guys worked most of the weekend on this project. I didn’t get a tally of the total sausage output, but here is the whole gang in a family photo. Brothers and sisters, husbands and wives. Many hands assured there were no flying pigs. 
Guido (Di wouldn't be talking about this subject!)

NOTE: We are headed to a two-week intensive language course in Tropea and a weekend trip to Siracusa, Sicily, so the blog may have some interesting photos.


  1. Love Italian recycling - water and/or soda bottles become wine bottles! Oh and of course Limoncello bottles.

  2. Great photos and commentary.

    Good luck on the course and I hope you have some fun with it.

  3. Wonderful !! Thanks so much for sharing - it was a good read ^.^

  4. Thanks all. Great day here today. Gotta go out there!

  5. Ciao all the best for 2011. I am back at last catching up on all the posts I missed while I was away from computing while on an extended trip to the UK. Familiar sights in your recent posts with gorgeous sunsets to enjoy and the annual pig slaughter. Our neighbours had the slaughter while we were away this year but we have still been invited to participate in a celebration supper. All their sausages are still made by hand!



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