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Warthog (Wild Pig) Recipes

Asked by tinacollins. Answered on 10th October 2011

Full question

Hi Nigella, Love the way you cook! I'm from SA and here we have warthog, which is basically a wild pig. Can you give me any ideas on how to cook it and with what? Thanks for a fabulous site and food! Tina

Our answer

Warthog is a game meat and, like most game meats, it will have a stronger flavour and leaner meat than it's domesticated cousin. The flavour is a matter of personal taste but the leanness can cause a slight problem as the meat will tend to become a little dry when cooked so benefits from marinating and/or slightly moister cooking methods. Also, as with most meats, the loin areas will tend to be more tender and the legs and shoulders will be tougher and may need longer slower cooking.

The Italians particularly enjoy wild boar (cinghiale) and have several good recipes. Nigella has a marianted and roasted pork loin in Feast (Rolled Loin of Pork "Cinghiale") p102 which would work well for the warthog loin, though you may like to ease back slightly on the juniper and allspice. The Rolled and Stuffed Loin of Pork from Christmas (p160) is also worth looking at as the meat is stuffed and rolled then covered in pancetta which will help to keep it moist.

The Italians also make a delicious ragu from wild boar, stewing it very slowly with tomatoes, red wine and herbs until the meat falls apart and can be shredded with a fork. It is traditionally served with pappardelle but would also be good with tagliatelle. Legs can be pot-roasted or braised to help keep the meat moist. Shoulder cuts are good made into curries which are cooked slowly so we would suggest Indian or African curries rather than Asian ones, though the boar would probably work well in a Thai Massaman-style curry which is cooked slowly and has slightly different spices to a regualr green or red Thai curry.

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