Spit-roasting a suckling pig isn't as involved and daunting as it sounds. Keeping the heat source low and basting intermittently to prevent the skin from cooking before the meat does are the major concerns -- well worth the trouble. Spit-roasting for the right amount of time caramelizes the piglet's outer skin, making it crispy and juicy while leaving the inner meat moist and infused with smoke and fire flavors.
By the Pound, By the Hour
To estimate how long you should spit-roast your suckling pig, calculate 20 minutes of cooking per pound. The amount and temperature of the embers or coals, and also blowing wind, affect the intensity of the heat that hits the pig. The optimal heat level is one that allows you to place your hand over the coals or embers at spit level for no more than five to 10 seconds. Plan on spit-roasting your piglet for at least four hours or until its internal temperature reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit at the deepest part of the haunch.