Reply Tue 1 Apr, 2008 04:52 pm
I'm a fair cook but I do not BBQ. Everything cooks too fast. There is open fire. There is a risk that I'll make something explode. You have to do things other than turn a dial to adjust the temperature.

My current kitchen is an absolute disaster but I have a lovely gas grill, a charcoal grill and a smoker sitting in my yard. Mr. B usually does the BBQ but I have decided that it is time for me to learn becaue my outdoor cooking things are better than my indoor cooking things.

Can you help me conquer my BBQ fear?

I'd really like to learn how to "bake" outside without having to buy one of those Green Egg things.

I need super easy advice because seriously, if I have to hang out over the BBQ it simply isn't worth it.

Thanks!
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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 3,588 • Replies: 32
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DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Apr, 2008 05:07 pm
BBQ means different things to different people.

BBQ on the East coast means glazing over a low heat.

BBQ in Texas means smoking with a low heat.



Then there's grilling, which is cooking over a (modestly) high heat.



Dammit, now I'm hungry.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Apr, 2008 05:09 pm
Good point.

In my house, BBQ means cooking outside.
0 Replies
 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Apr, 2008 05:09 pm
This is a great website for beginners:

http://www.barbecuebeginner.com/


One of the basics that trip up many beginners is that barbecuing is cooking with indirect heat and smoke, not hot coals and flames. Have a hot spot and a cool spot on the grill and place the food in the cool spot, close the cover on the barbecue and let the hot spot cook and flavor the food.
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Apr, 2008 05:15 pm
The gas grill is the easiest. You can control the heat. It's almost like cooking on a gas stove.

Cooking with charcoal is a pain in the ass. You have to start the charcoal waaaaay ahead of time, or everything comes out flavored like lighter fluid.





Smoking produces very flavorful, tender meat, but you have to cook stuff for a long time. I generally smoke for a couple of hours to flavor the meat, then transfer to an indoor oven to complete the cooking process. This gives better quality control and doesn't over flavor the meat.

Generally, I'll cook a whole brisket for 10 hours or so at 200. Get it untrimmed if you're going to cook the whole thing in the smoker. I also use a brisket rub, mostly salt with a few seasonings.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Apr, 2008 05:31 pm
I abjure all gas grillery because it is so clinically easy. It doesnt test one. We use a smoker made of a steel tank with an attached fire pot. We burn oak and feruitwood logs and keep a temp of about 200F or slightly higher in the pit. The Rub we use is low on salt , and we wrap it in AL foil for the first 4 or 5 hours. Then the foil is removed and the meat is cooked for the remaining 4 or 5 hours. (Its pretty much an all day thing, and is left for special family and friends gatherings. WHen the need for bbq pork is overpowering, we use the slow cooker and put a B. Butt in a mixture of Tubbs bbq sauce spiced up with a bit more tabasco and liquid smoke in a shallow broth. This takes about 5 to 6 hours but is easy and doesnt require watching. You are essentially free to go away or work in the yard while the aroma of slow cooking pork is wafting about the land.

The smoker does the same but it draws hillbillies.
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Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Apr, 2008 05:41 pm
Another good tip:

Avoid using charcoal with embedded lighter fluid or any lighter fluid at all. If you must, use a few chunks at the bottom of the pile of charcoals to help get it started. A few newspapers stuffed in the bottom of a chimney full of charcoals is usually all you need.

That lighter fluid gives a nasty smell and taste to the food.

To give the smoke some good aroma, soak a couple handfuls of wood chunks in water for several hours then wrap them up in aluminum foil and punch a few holes in the foil. Plunk the aluminum package on the coals. This will provide flavorful smoke without burning up the wood too quickly. Add a second batch of aluminum-wrapped wood about halfway through the cooking.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Apr, 2008 05:48 pm
So it sounds like I should be able to bake in the gas grill no differently than I would the oven. Is that true.

I like the way food tastes when cooked on charcoal. Lighter fluid is not tasty, I agree.

Farmerman, that sounds like our smoker. It's a bit tub looking thing with a little deal sticking off the side. We have lots of wood at our disposal!

But smoking.... hmmm... I'm a little turned off by it.

If you ever have the chance to meet Mr. B PLEASE don't say I said this but I don't like the food he smokes. The meat is tender but the skin is always really tough. What's up with that? Why does that happen?

What everyone is talking about smoking -- the long, slow cooking times, is how I cook in the oven.

I prolly count as hillbilly in sum circles and I'm not shamed by it.
0 Replies
 
eoe
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Apr, 2008 09:35 pm
Don't be shame. I ain't either.

But I'm with Farmerman about gas grills. Why bother barbecueing at all if not over a flame? Confused
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 04:14 am
we wrap our bbq meat in the tinfoil for the very reason that it keeps the crust to a manageable depth. You need some crust but not a huge amount. Also, keep the meat repositioned about every hour or so.

PS , at about the last 2 hours is when we add a "mop"sauce. Usually a concoction that includes a tomatoey vinegary spicey sauce, kinda thin .
0 Replies
 
Green Witch
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 04:18 am
I agree that flame is always the way to go when cooking outdoors.

For baking outside like an oven you need one of these - an oven:

http://www.liketocook.com/50226711/breadnerd_clay_oven.jpg


You can now buy them ready made (expensive), but if you are ambitious, you can make it yourself (I did with friends). They are spectacular for pizza and bread. The only downside is that it takes about 4 hours to get the heat ready and someone has to monitor the fire. In your climate it would have to have a bake shed around it.

Best book on the topic: Build Your Own Earth Oven: A Low-Cost Wood-Fired Mud Oven by Kiko Denzer
0 Replies
 
JPB
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 06:51 am
Steve Raichlen has a bbq series on PBS called 'bbq university' and a series of books that are great. I've given The Barbecue Bible and How To Grill as gifts a number of times. If I were to choose one I would pick the bible. Lots of how to's and recipes from around the world.
0 Replies
 
DrewDad
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 07:11 am
boomerang wrote:
So it sounds like I should be able to bake in the gas grill no differently than I would the oven. Is that true.

There is more direct heat on a grill. You'll toast the bottom, unless you insulate it somehow. Which then begs the question, why grill?

boomerang wrote:
If you ever have the chance to meet Mr. B PLEASE don't say I said this but I don't like the food he smokes. The meat is tender but the skin is always really tough. What's up with that? Why does that happen?

Not enough moisture/too much dry heat. Thus the wrapping with foil.

Smoke is a flavoring (and a preservative, but not many people use it that way anymore).

True pit BBQ is done in an earth pit. Fire on one side with a huge pot of menudo over it. A whole goat on the other side. Cover the pit and leave the whole thing for a day. The menudo cooks, steams the meat, retards the flames, and the smoke flavors everything. Mmm....
0 Replies
 
dadpad
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 08:03 am
You have lady bumps therefore you cannot bbq.

Please move away from the grill. S- l- o- w- l- y. with your hands in the air.

Turning meat into charcoal mens business.

I suggest Mo be encoraged.
0 Replies
 
Bi-Polar Bear
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 09:31 am
DrewDad wrote:
The gas grill is the easiest. You can control the heat. It's almost like cooking on a gas stove.

Cooking with charcoal is a pain in the ass. You have to start the charcoal waaaaay ahead of time, or everything comes out flavored like lighter fluid.





Smoking produces very flavorful, tender meat, but you have to cook stuff for a long time. I generally smoke for a couple of hours to flavor the meat, then transfer to an indoor oven to complete the cooking process. This gives better quality control and doesn't over flavor the meat.

Generally, I'll cook a whole brisket for 10 hours or so at 200. Get it untrimmed if you're going to cook the whole thing in the smoker. I also use a brisket rub, mostly salt with a few seasonings.


I usually smoke for a couple of minutes before i eat. then everything tastes good.
0 Replies
 
Green Witch
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 10:12 am
dadpad wrote:
You have lady bumps therefore you cannot bbq.

Please move away from the grill. S- l- o- w- l- y. with your hands in the air.

Turning meat into charcoal mens business.

I suggest Mo be encoraged.


Around our place we refer to this as The Fred Flintstone Gene. Men just can't resist roasting big chunks of bloody, raw meat over a blazing fire while poking it at with a giant fork. Personally, I see no harm in letting them have their fun and the results are usually quiet tasty. I just supply the salad and napkins.
0 Replies
 
eoe
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 11:03 am
Me too Green Witch. Me too. My husband is a terrific griller w/o even trying. My brother has a sauce that we've talked about marketing. It's THAT good. I say, let them have that. It sure takes me off the hook.
0 Replies
 
Bi-Polar Bear
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 11:19 am
cooking meat outdoors is wonderful but please do we once again have to go over the fact that doesn't make it barbeque... barbeque is pig... cooked very slowly and constantly basted with a red vinegar based sauce.... then garnished with Texas Pete after being pulled directly from the pig with one's fingers....serve with brunswick stew and hush puupies, tater salad and corn on the cob... don't forget the banana cream pie...
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 11:27 am
There's nothin' i hate more than a vinegar based sauce. When i lived briefly in North Carolina, and the neighbors were fixin' to have a pig pickin', the smell of the vinegar bein' reduced in the sauce would literally drive me out of the neighborhood. Course, i was happy to come back later to help eat the pig.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Apr, 2008 12:48 pm
all regional moppins, Carolina Vinegar,North Carolina red, Memphis sauce, Texas Hot, and KC style, are all good but slightly different. I wouldnt refuse any of em if theyre done right . Cole slaw on the side or in the bun, hush puppies heck, sweet tea, check, greens cooked with hamhocks, check. You can keep the banana cream pie. Ill eat the cracklins for dessert.
0 Replies
 
 

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