the guinea pig letters

way back in the day, i found myself in possession of a semi-decent sized collection of incredibly disgusting recipes. so, as one does, i started a blog about them, and garnered a bit of attention (of both the good and the bad variety) for a particular recipe for fried guinea pig.

part of the beauty of the recipe i had found was the simplicity with which the process was presented. "one guinea pig, de-haired, gutted, and cleaned," the recipe said. i editorially mused on how one might achieve this, and then without further inquiry both the recipe and i moved on to the next part (1/2 c. flour).

and then today i received the most wonderful email. Mr. Charlie Sommers, a self-described "Tennessee country boy (actually an old man)" found me through the magic of the internet and decided to shed light on the path. A warning that, if your stomach is not of the iron-clad variety, this might not be your cup of tea.

From: charlesfsommers@
To: Helen
Subject: How To Dehair a Guinea Pig

Enjoyed your disgusting recipes and thought I could enlighten you on how to dehair a guinea pig.

Dispatch the pig with a tug on the old head strong enough to displace the cervical vertebrae and sever the spinal cord. After twitching has ceased you may bleed the animal with as small of an incision as possible on the neck. After bleeding is complete bob the animal in water that has been heated to 155 degrees, do not use boiling water or you will set the hair. After a minute or so the hair will slip off with very little effort on your part, then you may proceed with removing the guts.

This method is also good for dehairing the possum. When cooked with the skin on both of these animals will retain more of their delicious juices and their skins will make wonderfully crisp cracklings after browning.

Bon Appetite,

Charlie Sommers
After twitching has ceased! How could I resist this? I wrote Mr. Sommers a reply, inquiring where he had picked up such knowledge. He replied right away:
Hi Helen,

I am a Tennessee country boy (actually an old man) and have assisted in the dehairing of many pigs of the porker variety. Any good old country boy who eats possum (they are delicious) knows that they are better dehaired than skinned. I have also used this method on groundhogs with much success. I have never dehaired a guinea pig but I am sure that this method works on any animal. When working in a custom slaughter house I once used this method on several goats that were being slaughtered for local Muslims. I have a friend whose wife is Peruvian and she assures me that guinea pigs are delicious and account for much of the meat eaten in her home country.

Cordially yours,

Charlie Sommers
Dear Charlie Sommers,

I adore you.



Kat said...

Oh thank God this is back for discussion on your blog. I cannot begin to tell you how much I have missed ewewgross.com and guinea pig recipes in general. I am completely serious.

thpapertiger said...


blog admirer, j.

RW said...

Please please please... I just want to get to Papaya King...

helen said...

ooh, i really want a hot dog now.

Keith said...

Thank you Helen and r. Charlie Sommers, this post totally made my day. Off to the pet store!

Alysa said...

That’s right Smotrs…. The guy sure knows his Excel stuff. Would love to see the code to do this.
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Anonymous said...

WAY COOL Tried to do an MORPG in Excel once a few years back. (multiplayer, not massively multiplayer mind you) You can imagine how it went.
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Love Kpop said...

I was a girl, but clumsy things. I do not know how to cook, sew, above, ca. I have too insipid and tedious, but that's my personality. It's hard to change