Not until I made a plan for a Thanksgiving party at my house did I look for what a Caja China is. Eventually, I came up with the idea to roast a whole pig at home.
But how to make a Caja China without a giant roaster? I had no intention of buying one because I do not want to waste money on something that I may not use again. So, I started searching for a credible and economical way to build a pig-roasting box.
And I came across some videos and articles describing the process of making a Caja China. By using some wooden metals and simple crafting skills, you can easily make one yourself in less than 4 hours.
This writing describes the way I found out how to make it using a simple process. And I ended up preparing the whole family with some delicious roast pork.
How Caja China Method Outweighs Other Traditional Methods
You can find a dozen of ways to make Caja China on the internet, but in my point of view, I think there are only two main ways to make them right.
The Original Version
After weighing up the pros and cons of multiple different methods, I decided to choose Caja China. Due to its simplicity and functionality, I strongly believe that it will be a perfect choice for a homemade roast pig.
In this approach, the pig lays flat and is held stable within a primitive frame that has a simple structure. After that, the pig is placed in a box called Caja China. On top of the pig, the charcoal will be burned on a tray.
This heating mode allows the heat to spread down from the top, just like in a huge BBQ grill. The Caja China method only takes under 4 hours to fully roast a pig; then it is flipped around to maintain the crisp skin.
Regarding the benefits, roasting a pig in Caja China is not limited by the location as it does not require a big space. Moreover, you can put the heating level under control by adding more or less charcoal to the top tray. Not to mention the fact that the roasted skin is poofy crispy. Somebody get hard when light the charcoal if you are also get something same my words, let try my article here:
How To Light Lump Charcoal In Shortest Time _ Oh She Cooks
The Modified Version
Another version of the Caja China method requires you to dig a pit in the form of a rectangular. Basically, the hole serves as the box in the ordinary version. The prepared pig is put inside, along with a sheet of steel on top and charcoal.
Generally, the heat still spreads from the top. However, this method should be applied if your house has a pretty large yard. Due to its limitations in terms of space, I will only focus on the original version of the Caja China method.
In order to know how to roast a pig using a Caja China, take a look at this video.
How To Make a Caja China
What You Need
- A hand saw
- Nails and hammer
- 2 x 4 and 2 x 2 sheets of aluminum
- 1×3 and 1×2 furring strips
- An MIG welder and safety gear
- An MIG welder and safety gear
- A grinder
- Two 2,25” x 2,25” and two 2,25” x 4,25” plywood sheets
- A steel grate that has stable handles
- A 2’ 0.25” x 4’ 0.25” sheet of plywood
- Four 2” x 4” x 3’ wooden pieces
- Two wheel casters
- Wood screws
- Shelving hardware and brackets
- Four S-hooks
- Two wire racks
- Measuring tape
- A catch pan made of aluminum
Construct The Box
Use the welder to weld the sheets of aluminum to shape a roaster; then combine the 2×4 aluminum pieces to the 2 x 2 ones. Proceed this step in a careful manner, so there are no gaps in the joints. Grind all rough welds so as to prevent cuts or nicks from sharp edges.
Discard the protective gear, and get ready to build a box from wooden materials. Create the ends of the box using shorter wooden pieces, and make the sides using longer ones. Once it is shaped, glide the sheet of plywood to the bottom, then use nails to keep the pieces stabilized. You should make sure that the pieces are square and held on the same level.
Place the aluminum pack within the newly-made wooden box. There should be no gaps between the two boxes. Measure two wheel casters’ height using the measuring tape. Use the hand saw to cut two lumber pieces in order to adhere the casters to the wooden box. After that, use nails to keep them stable.
Attach the shelving brackets to the external sides of the box as handles. They need to be thoroughly stable so that it can handle the box while the pig is inside. Place the catch pan to the aluminum box’s bottom. All grease and drips will be caught by this connection.
After affixing the S-hooks to each corner of the wire racks, put them within the box. Stabilize the catch pan right on top of the wooden box, which is where the coals are used for heating. Remember that the catch pan needs to be secured so that burns are prevented.
Build The Top Frame
In general, the top frame is made of a steel sheet, and it is placed inside a frame that has handles.
Cover the furring strips with the aluminum foil. Remember to leave one inch on each side unwrapped to prevent the heat from escaping.
After removing all plastic films on the steel sheet, adhere the furring strips to the steel sheet’s long sides, overlapping the wood and steel by 1”. Use nails to keep them stable.
It is time you put two other 1×3 furring strips into use. Shorten them so that they fit the steel sheet’s short sides, and they can also fit the long sides of the frame. Use foil to cover them, then stabilize them with nails.
Put the top frame on top of the wooden box. Slide a 1×2 piece of strip to the gap in the plywood box so that it fills up the notch. Use some wood screws to secure the structure, then repeat the same thing with the opposite side.
Last but not least, screw the furring strips (size 1×2) in a perpendicular line onto the bottom side of 1×3 strips. These pieces have the ability to handle the weight of the box. This is also the final step to finish constructing the top frame, as well as the Caja China.
The bottom line
In conclusion, that is basically how I succeeded in making my own Caja China. Thanks to this homemade roasting box, I had a wonderful time with a stunning roast pig along with my family. You can also create your own one with such easy-to-find materials.
However, try to be as careful as possible when constructing it. Knowing how to make a Caja China is important, but protecting yourself from being burnt or hurt is also essential.