Birthdays only come once a year, and milestone birthdays only happen once in a lifetime. It just so happens that I recently passed one of those milestone birthdays and ticked over into the big 30′s. Some people like to spend these occasions relaxing on a beach, or sulking about father time catching up with them, but I saw this as a prime opportunity to expand my barbecue horizons into a category of cooking that every great pitmaster must dabble in. So I treated myself to a pre-birthday present by purchasing a La Caja China roasting box and set out on my first pig roast!
This weekend I was watching reruns of Alton Brown’s Good Eats (one of my all time favorite cooking shows), and I caught an episode that was completely dedicated to cooking with alcohol…well, mainly wine and beer. Lately I have taken an even more increased interest in incorporating these flavors into my own cooking, so I quickly hit the record button on my DVR. Coincidentally, Alton proceeded to breakdown the science behind two specific recipes that I have been experimenting with extensively myself; wine marinated lamb steaks and beer bread. But that wasn’t the nugget of information that piqued my interest.
In it’s purest form, a fatty is most easily described as those sausage chubs that you can find at most grocery stores. The brands can vary (especially when dealing with smaller local markets), but some of the most common national brands are Jimmy Dean, Bob Evans and Hormel. The concept is simple, but extremely effective. Carefully remove the plastic sleeve leaving the “chub” shape intact, season with your favorite barbecue rub, and toss it on the smoker. Sound familiar? Well, this is the technique that inspired our Bacon Explosion recipe.
Our friend Ron Lewen has recently devoted himself to a world-wide campaign dedicated to “Saving the Naked Fatty”. As much as we enjoy the extravagant bacon wrapped and cheese stuffed fatties that are floating around the interwebs these days, we wanted to pay tribute to Ron’s efforts and dish up our version
Every year for St. Patrick’s Day I load up the smoker with corned beef brisket to make homemade pastrami. Being Irish, this is the perfect meal that combines my heritage with my passion for barbecue. This year’s pastrami smoke-out took place a couple weekends ago, and was once again a huge success. But now that I’ve been eating sandwiches for the better part of two weeks, it’s time to throw a little variety into the mix. My buddy, and Burnt Finger BBQ teammate, Gish was having a grilled pizza party for March Madness, so we packed up the pastrami fixins to test out our new grilled Reuben pizza recipe for our leftovers.
Over the past few months I’ve had the pleasure of spending some quality time with barbecue legend Chef Paul Kirk. In case you’re unfamiliar with Paul’s work, he’s a world renowned chef and has won over 475 cooking and barbecue awards (including 7 world championships and the American Royal Open), written 7 barbecue books, operates the Baron’s School of Pitmasters, serves on the Kansas City Barbecue Society’s board of directors, and was inducted into the KCBS Barbecue Hall of Flame in 1990. Needless to say this man knows his ‘que, and has long been one of my favorite barbecue authors.
It’s no secret that our blog has been awkwardly quiet for the last couple of months. It pained us to do so, but we took some time off from writing on the internet to spend some extra time fine-tuning our upcoming book. Yes, that’s right…the cookbook that made headlines on Entertainment Weekly has been officially sent to the printers! We’ll keep you posted on all the smoky details as we get closer to the release of BBQ Makes Everything Better, but in the meantime we’re celebrating our return to the blogosphere the only way we know how….with FREE BACON!!!
Posted by Aaron on July 23, 2009
Recently Jason and I started doing a webcast for Sun Publications, aptly name “The BBQ Addicts Show“. I know, totally creative but I guess it gets the point across. I voted for “The BBQ Addicts Act Like Monkeys And Then Cook Show” but no one would agree with me. Here is a press release from Sun about the show for some additional info.
The show is going to be geared for beginners in the first few shows, then we’ll get into some more advance techniques including injections, making your own rubs and barbecue sauces, maybe even cooking the Bacon Explosion!
Cooking up a barbecue feast for your friends and family can (and will) be an all day affair. Depending on the size of your cut, briskets and pork butts can take every bit of 18 hours to slow smoke to perfection. As much as I like starving myself all day in anticipation of the gluttony that’s soon to come, my willpower tends to falter somewhere around the noon hour. Since the smoker is already chugging away, there’s no need to power up the oven for that well deserved mid-day snack. Instead, I prefer to toss in a few stuffed jalapeno peppers…especially the ones dubbed “Atomic Buffalo Turds”!!!
Posted by Aaron on April 22, 2009
This post clearly doesn’t fall under the BBQ flag, but we’re posting it anyway because it can be paired with your BBQ quite nicely. If you’ve got a pork butt or a brisket on the smoker all day and your guests are demanding food at 2 o’clock in the afternoon, here is your solution. Tired of hot dogs and ham sandwiches while you’re camping? Well look no further because we have the best camping recipe there is. It’s quick and easy and much much better than a ham and cheese sandwich with Doritos smashed in it (wait, I like those…).
Being a true Irishman, I can honestly say that St. Patrick’s Day is the one day a year America truly embraces my Irish heritage (even if it’s just a big excuse to drink too much Guinness). This is also the time of year that local markets are flooded with an overstock of corned beef briskets. Now don’t get me wrong, I love the occasional bowl of corned beef and cabbage just much as the next guy, but that’s not really a dish I choose to eat all year long. Instead, my stockpiled freezer of clearance sale corned beef briskets get tossed into the smoker to make fresh homemade pastrami.