This whole hog bit is like a dumb joke at a party--everybody plays along, everybody adds just a little bit to it. Then That Guy goes and does it--he goes too far. That's where I am right now.
Look closely at the picture of Jasper I posted on Monday. Notice what I haven't eaten: the back half of the hog, and the insides. I've eaten most of the parts of the pig that are served fresh and are easy to find. The project is kind of stalled right now, because I'm not quite ready to take the next steps, although I'm thinking about it.
I'm thinking about finding a Meat Guy--a guy who can hook me up with feet and hearts and livers and heads and the like. I've got a few leads, but I need to start making some calls.
I'm thinking about making ham and bacon, too. Not buying packaged stuff at the store and heating it, but curing and cold-smoking meats. I've got some fresh ham in the freezer, and I'm already thinking about what to do next. I've discovered that Morton Salt sells pre-mixed meat cures that include nitrates and nitrites. I'm starting to price cold-smokers, and contemplating plans for building one. (Note: the last time I tried to build a meat-smoking device, it turned out poorly. So poorly, in fact, that L wouldn't let me watch Alton Brown for about a year afterwards.)
I'm about to go too far.