Writer: ‘Can You Get Me a Gallon of Pig’s Blood?’

If you think that’s raspberry sauce in the picture accompanying FBDC Contributor Peter Ogburn‘s food piece for NPR this week, you’re in for a frightening surprise.

Actually, it’s pig’s blood. And from a pig he killed with a nail gun to the brain. After the animal was strung up by its hind legs, Ogburn took a knife and slit its throat. “It was insane. I straight up cried after. It’s one thing to order pork chops in a restaurant, it’s another to see the animal die,” he said during an afternoon phone conversation. “It’s not fun, but it’s worth doing. I’d do it again.”

The blood was to be used for chocolate and blood pudding and savory blood cake in the spirit of Halloween. He also cooked beef heart and sweetbreads, which are veal thymus glands.


“While most good butchers can get you organ meats, animal blood is a different story. Have you ever asked someone with a straight face, “Can you get me a gallon of fresh pig’s blood?” It made grown men wearing aprons stained with animal blood and viscera look at me like I was the gross one. Reputable and willing butchers still have to follow FDA regulations that control the flow of blood from farm to slaughterhouse to butcher to consumer.”

It should be noted that Ogburn has killed pigs before. Several years ago he raised his own pig. Then he slaughtered and butchered it. “I was in a weird phase where I was trying to force myself to live off the land,” he said. “Don’t ask.”