How to Make Suckling Pig Vindaloo

Suckling pig
This suckling pig was worth the work!

Suckling pig is simply amazing!

This is an authentic Goan vindaloo with a difference. I’ve used all the most popular ingredients found in Goan vindaloos but instead of using chunks of pork form the leg or shoulder of a mature pig, I’ve opted for the sweet, melt in your mouth tender meat of the suckling pig.

Suckling pigs are slaughtered at about 12 weeks and have been reared on nothing but their mother’s milk. The result is a meat that is so delicious it would be a crime to cover it with curry sauce as much as I do love it.

Instead, the vindaloo gravy is just used as an intense sauce on the side. Just dab the meat in the spicy Goan sauce and savour its incredible flavour while enjoying the spectacular tender pork that is the best you can buy.

You will need to start this recipe a day ahead of when you are serving it.

Suckling Pig Vindaloo
Suckling Pig Vindaloo

for the suckling pig

Suckling pigs are available in different sizes between 11 and 35 lbs. Generally speaking, each pound of suckling pig will feed one person. The following marinade can be made in small or large quantities. This amount is plenty for an 18 lbs piglet.

marinading ingredients

3 inch piece of ginger – finely chopped
20 cloves garlic – finely chopped
400ml (1 1/2 cups) dry white wine
30 peppercorns
1 Tablespoon cumin seeds
1 Tablespoon salt
5 green chillies – finely chopped
2 Tablespoons red chilli powder
1 Tablespoon paprika
1 bunch coriander leaves

3 Tablespoons salt

Blend all the ingredients in a blender into a smooth marinade. Rub the marinade into the flesh of the suckling pig. Place the suckling pig in a black rubbish sack with the marinade and marinade for 24 to 48  hours.

When you are ready to cook the suckling pig, dry the pig all over, score the skin every inch or so and rub olive oil into the skin. Work the salt into the skin.

Heat your oven to the highest temperature. Place the suckling pig in the oven and roast for 40 minutes. Turn down to 180 degrees fahrenheit and roast for about 25 minutes per pound. Oven cooking times do vary so watch it carefully so you don’t overcook the succulent meat.

You can either use a meat thermometer or a fork to check for doneness. The juices will run clear when the suckling pig is ready. For best results be sure to spoon the cooking juices over the meat as it cooks.

for the sauce

INGREDIENTS for suckling pig vindaloo sauce

1 Tablespoon cumin seeds
1 Teaspoon coriander seeds
3 dried red chilli peppers
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 Tablespoon black cardamom seeds
1 teaspoon green cardamom seeds
1 3 inch cinnamon stick
1 heaping tablespoon black mustard seeds
1 Teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1 Tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves
6 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons ghee or vegetable oil
15 fresh curry leaves
1 teaspoon jaggery or light brown sugar
1 onion very finely chopped
2 inch piece of ginger finely chopped
14 cloves garlic – smashed and finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon turmeric

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Dry fry the whole spices in a small frying pan over medium heat. Move the spices around in the pan so that they roast evenly. When the spices begin to smoke, remove them from the heat.

Place he spices in a spice grinder and grind to a fine powder.

Add the spice powder to the vinegar, salt and brown sugar to form a paste.

Place the oil or ghee into a large heavy saucepan. Throw in the mustard seeds and curry leaves.

When the mustard seeds begin to pop, throw in the finely chopped onions. Cook over medium heat until the onions are translucent and lightly browned.

Put the ginger and garlic in a food processor with about 3 tablespoons of water and blend to a paste.

Add the ginger and garlic pastes and spice powder to the pan and fry for about a minute.  Sprinkle in the turmeric and cook for one more minute.

to serve

When the suckling pig is ready, allow it to rest outside the oven for about half an hour. Gather the cooking juices and separate from the fat. Add the cooking juices to your vindaloo sauce. Heat and test for seasoning.

Serve each guest with a few pieces of pork and just enough vindaloo sauce to add flavour. Sprinkle with a little fresh homemade garam masala and dig in.

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  1. says

    Utterly utterly outrageous. Extraordinary. I cannot find enough superlatives to describe this. I’m just blown away. Oh. My. God. I have to have it.
    Thanks for making my day, Dan. Next week’s #recipeshed will be LESS THAN 5 INGREDIENTS if you have anything to share.

    • Dan Toombs says

      Hi Keith! Glad you like the recipe and thanks. You’ve got to give it a try. Placing the pig in the centre of the table really tends to get the party going. If you make it, be sure to let me know how you like it. Cheers, Dan

  2. says

    Hi Dan

    This is quite something! If you or any of your loyal followers are having trouble sourcing suckling pig we can rear them to order (lead time about 9 weeks). All our pigs are rare breeds and outdoor born and raised to the highest welfare standards.

  3. Nick Griffiths says

    Hi Dan – congrats on the press coverage. I’m making this recipe for a big Xmas feast for friends. And I’m slightly confused. Besides the dried chillies and black pepper, I can’t see much of the vindaloo heat I crave. No chilli powder? Obviously am being naive – please advise. Many thanks and Happy Xmas. Nick

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