Cochon de lait is a traditional Cajun dish that originated in Louisiana, United States. It is a French term that translates to “milk pig” in English, and it refers to a young pig that is still nursing.
To prepare cochon de lait, a whole suckling pig is usually marinated in a spicy seasoning blend made with ingredients such as garlic, onion, thyme, paprika, and cayenne pepper. The pig is then roasted on a spit over an open flame until it is crispy and golden brown on the outside and juicy and tender on the inside.
Cochon de lait is often served at large outdoor gatherings, such as festivals, fairs, and family reunions, and it is usually accompanied by other Cajun-style dishes, such as dirty rice, jambalaya, and gumbo. It is a popular dish in the Southern United States, particularly in Louisiana, and it is considered a staple of Cajun cuisine.
PREPARATION TIME: 4 hours
- 4-5 pound cochon de lait (suckling pig)
- 6 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Preheat oven to 325°F.
- Rub the cochon de lait with the minced garlic, Cajun seasoning, olive oil, and apple cider vinegar.
- Place the cochon de lait in a roasting pan and pour the chicken broth around it.
- Roast the cochon de lait in the oven for 3-4 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F.
- While the cochon de lait is roasting, prepare the sauce by combining the brown sugar, cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, cumin, salt and pepper in a small saucepan.
- Simmer the sauce over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until it thickens.
- When the cochon de lait is done roasting, remove it from the oven and let it cool slightly.
- Pull the meat apart with two forks and place it in a large bowl.
- Pour the sauce over the pulled pork and stir to combine.
- Serve the cochon de lait with your favorite sides.
This cochon de lait is delicious served over rice, with collard greens, and cornbread.