Tag Archives: BBQ

BBQ Links and Resources

So every once and a while I will send out emails to the people on my list and I ask a short 5 question survey so I can keep track of what you guys are really looking for content wise. This past survey brought up some things that I wanted to answer right away.

I would like info on where maybe bbq classes are being offered

This is really dependent on where you live in the world. This list might help, some have their own class page others mix them in with the events pages.

USA

Canada

Australia

Affiliates:

If this conversation is getting you hungry, try out The Pig Of The Month Club They have Ribs, Pork, Sausage, Chicken, and many other meats all sent directly to you once each month! They also carry Rubs and Sauces for your enjoyment as well.

UK

External Resources

There are a few places other than my podcast that are giving out great info. Here is a list of resources that you might like.

When you BBQ, you need to know your smoke.

The difference between clean and dirty smoke can mean the difference between awesome and horrible tasting food! Today we’re going to cover the different kinds of smoke that you can get with your smoker and how to control that.

So what do you mean by clean smoke?

Yeah, I know by definition smoke isn’t cleaning but when we’re talking clean smoke with cooking we are talking about a very light blue to almost see-through kind of smoke. This is the kind of smoke penetrates meat and gives you that awesome smoke ring that you’re looking for when you make a brisket or pork shoulder.

And what is dirty smoke?

Dirty smoke is just that if someone can look at your smoker and then feel the urge to dial 911 because they see billows of white, gray, or even black smoke coming out of your smoker then I can guarantee that whatever you’re cooking might as well go right in the trash.

So how do I control my smoke?

Smoke can be controlled in quite a few ways… firstly, make sure you are using seasoned wood and not green wood. If you are burning charcoal then you can just simply toss a small chunk or two on the coals and make sure it it not fully exposed to air. The more air you give the wood, the more likely it will burst into flames and give you that black smoke you want to avoid. If you give it air but reduce the exposure then you will get the wood to smolder and give off the right kind of smoke you are looking for.

What is “green” wood?

According to Wikipedia: Green wood is wood that has been recently cut and therefore has not had an opportunity to season (dry) by evaporation of the internal moisture. Green wood contains more moisture than seasoned wood, which has been dried through passage of time or by forced drying in kilns. Green wood is considered to have 100% moisture content relative to air-dried or seasoned wood which is considered to be 20%.”

So basically freshly cut wood that still has moisture in it. The problem with green wood is that heat is used to evaporate the moisture so the overall temperature is lower and therefore produces more creosote which means dirty smoke.

Seasoned wood is the way to go

Seasoned wood burns hotter and cleaner and can add the right flavor to your food. Once the wood has had time to dry out, it becomes easier to burn and much lighter. One good way to check if a piece of wood is ready, try hitting it with another piece of wood. If it makes a hollow knocking sound then you are good. If it makes a dense thud then the wood is still green.

Let me know in the comments what you are smoking with!

Sauce Review: The Shed Original Southern Sweet

  

So this review is for The Shed’s Original Southern Sweet sauce. All in all this is a good sauce. It has a sweet taste and a little bit of heat on the backend.

The sauce is thicker and holds up nice to ribs and other meats. When you first taste it, you get a maple syrup flavor followed by a bit of vinegar and then the heat come in. Not to bad but you notice it.

I would give this one a try for sure.

Overall Rating:

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️  4/5

Sauce Review: Sticky Fingers Smokehouse Carolina Sweet Barbecue Sauce

  

So as I work on my own sauce profiles, I felt that I should try some of the other smaller brands that I can get at my local store. Today I am trying Sticky Fingers Smokehouse Carolina Sweet Barbecue Sauce. Here is what I found

I really liked the tang the sauce gave. Unfortunately I felt that the sauce was lacking in overall flavor.

  • The sauce was high in vinegar. It was distinct in the sauce
  • The sauce overall was kind of bland in flavor Other than the vinegar no other flavor profiles stood out.
  • It is a thinner sauce than some others.

I tried this on some ribs and I plan on using the whole bottle. I will try it on pork butt and I will add to this review.

Overall Rating:

⭐️⭐️⭐️ 3/5

Masterbuilt Electric Smoker Rebuild

So I was driving around the other day and I pass a Masterbuilt Eletric Smoker just sitting at someone’s curb. I stopped my car in the middle of the road and then pulled to the side.

It was a rusty, warn out, sad little thing that just needed a little love. Taped to the top of it was the original manual as well as a note that read; All parts inside. Heat coil needs to be repaired.

So I threw it into the back of my car and sped off towards my home.

I proceeded to begin cleaning it. It was an absolute mess. It was filled with cobwebs, rust, dirt, and even left over food residue.


I began cleaning the grates and the coil.


The coil was good, the wires had rusted and broke. I replaced the wire terminals and reattached the coil. I then touched up some rust spots.

Then came time to test this wonderful machine. I first ran it for 3 hours at 250 just to see if it would hold temp. It was working fine so I added a rack of ribs and was really happy with the result.

   
 
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The WSM Setup tests

Ok, so now that I have had my Weber Smokey Mountain for about 5 months, I figured it’s time to experiment with different setups.

The Control

So my default setup is to fill the charcoal ring 3/4 full. I then light a full charcoal chimney with coals and light it up. Once lit, I top off the charcoal ring for a minion method cook.

My vents are fully open because I have gasket seals on the whole smoker. I also fill the water bowl with about 4gal of water. This evens out at about 225 – 240 degrees.

Experimental Setup #1: No Water

So I have read online that a few people will cook without water. They leave the water bowl in and cover it in foil. I took this method and modified it a little. I put in an 18in pizza stone in the bowl and wrapped it in foil.

I am using Cowboy lump charcoal with the same ratios as before. 3/4 full and a full chimney. I left the vents fully open but this topped at 350. I pulled all three bottom vents down to 15-25% open (you can’t really be exact) and the temp dropped to 275. This is perfect for a fast cook ribs.

The pizza stone did not seem to make a big difference. But I’m keeping it in there anyway.

Conclusions

I think for long term cooking at a lower temperature keeping water in the basin is the way to go. I have trouble getting the smoker over 250° when the basin is full. This makes it more difficult to burn my food. Now if I want to go hot and fast the new water is definitely the way to go. I think the foil and the pizza stone act is a perfect deflector so that the meat does not get direct fire. The real takeaways from this experiment is that you shouldn’t be scared try new things with your own smoker. Try throwing firebricks in the bottom or try new kinds of woods while cooking. You never know what you may discover by changing things around a little bit.

Low and Slow BBQ at Home with Dr. BBQ himself, Ray Lampe

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A BBQ Class at home?

You heard right, almost every BBQ class that is out there require you to travel to the teacher and can cost upwards of $400-$600 dollars! Now don’t get me wrong, paying $600 dollars for a BBQ class gets you an inside look into how a competition BBQ team does its magic! That can be worth it’s weight in gold but to take the class in the comfort of your living room is priceless! This class isn’t $600 dollars, it isn’t even $60 dollars. It’s the insanely low price of $39.99! In fact it’s even on sale right now for $29.99! So let’s get into it.

What does it cover?

This class really covers everything you need to make your own rubs, sauces, and best of all smoked meats!

Lesson 1: Firing Up the Barbecue

This lesson covers what you need to know about the grills and smokers that you would use in cooking. He covers fuel sources, the basic kettle grill, ceramic smokers, and even pellet smokers.

Now you know I personally use a Weber Smokey Mountain in which I use charcoal. I have a few posts on maintaining heat on my offset smoker as well. This is something to pay attention to.

Lesson 2: Seasoning the Meat

Let’s jump right into flavor! Wood and seasonings are the way you can add flavor to the meat. Several woods types are covered including hardwoods and fruit woods. Then we move into the spices. The Doctor shows us how to make a good dry rub and talks about how to change it up.

This is the same process I went through when coming up with my flavor profile. Check out BBQ Flavor 101: Making a BBQ Rub for my take on this.

Lesson 3: Making Sauce

We jump right into a good and tangy BBQ sauce! He starts with a ketchup based sauce with several ingredients. He also covers a yummy South Carolina vinegar sauce. Here is my take on it: BBQ Flavor 201: Sweet BBQ Sauce also have a look at this awesome video, I really love the white sauce.

Lesson 4: Pulled Pork

Now this is where the fun begins! Pork butt is covered in all aspects, we learn how to clean it up and trim the fat, both home-style an even competition bbq! You get to learn about shoulder, picnic, and the incredible Money Muscle! Ray shows you three ways to serve the pork, chunks, pulled, and chopped. This is one of my personal favorites. I make it quite often. Have fun with this and through a party.

Lesson 5: Brisket

Brisket is always a scarey piece of meat to cook mainly due to it’s price, but don’t worry! Ray gives you all the info you need to smoke a good brisket. He covers meat choice, trimming, seasoning, and cooking.

We get a good lesson in trimming the fat for competition. Ray covers the muscles of a briskey and how to cut them. He also shows you two seasoning methods, Kansas City style and Texas style.

He takes the meat to a Fast Eddy FEC100 for 8-12 hours.

He presents slices and burnt ends, I’m hungry now… think I am going to do one of these this weekend.

Lesson 6: Ribs

Ahh ribs, we are going to see three cuts of ribs.

First we see baby back. This is the top part of the rib cage. We are shown how to trim the fat and pull the membrane off. We see a sweet rub added and then on to the spares. The spare ribs are the bottom part of the same ribs. Once trimmed they are good to go but if you don’t like the cartilage then you can do a St. Louis cut. You will end up with rib tips doing this, but there’s nothing wrong with that.

He cooks the ribs on the Fast Eddy as well. What a cooker!

Lesson 7: BBQ Chicken & Turkey

Whole chicken is cheap and tastes great! We are shown how to break the chicken down into halves and how to trim and cleanup chicken parts.

Ray covers brines as well. You want to brine for a few hours but be careful or you will end up with salty chicken.

We move on to cooking and the on to turkey!

Injection is the way Ray treats this turkey. He then adds aromatics as well as a bbq rub. He shows off a neat trick where he places a bag of ice on the white meat for 1 hour to help change the temp so that when it cooks, you don’t end up with overcooked, dry white meat.

This one gets cooked on a standard Weber kettle cooker!

What makes this class so special?

It really covers everything you need to find your passion for BBQ. Food, spices, sauces, and cooking techniques are all covered and with just enough detail to get you started. You also have direct access to Ray! Unless you are at a physical class, you won’t get this anywhere else! Ask a question in the class and he will personally answer it within a few days.

Sign up for the class by clicking on this link:

 Low & Slow BBQ at Home with Dr. BBQ, Ray Lampe

 

Just to let you know, this is one of my sponsors. I do get a commission if you choose to sign up. That shouldn’t sway you to buy this class nor should it sway you to not buy it. I have bought this class my self before being sponsored and I really think it’s worth it.

Helpful BBQ Resources

So every once and a while I will send out emails to the people on my list and I ask a short 5 question survey so I can keep track of what you guys are really looking for content wise. This past survey brought up some things that I wanted to answer right away.

I would like info on where maybe bbq classes are being offered

This is really dependent on where you live in the world. This list might help, some have their own class page others mix them in with the events pages.

USA

Canada

Australia

Affiliates:

If this conversation is getting you hungry, try out The Pig Of The Month Club They have Ribs, Pork, Sausage, Chicken, and many other meats all sent directly to you once each month! They also carry Rubs and Sauces for your enjoyment as well.

UK

External Resources

There are a few places other than my podcast that are giving out great info. Here is a list of resources that you might like.

Some Food Articles that I wanted to share with you

I know I have been slacking in the recipe department lately. So I decided to share out some articles that I like and I think you will too. Food is meant to be shared and articles about food are no different.

Affiliates:

If this conversation is getting you hungry, try out The Pig Of The Month Club They have Ribs, Pork, Sausage, Chicken, and many other meats all sent directly to you once each month! They also carry Rubs and Sauces for your enjoyment as well.
 

The Rumbly Tumbly

This is a newer blog that started a few months back. There are quite a few dishes on there and the style is awesome! I might do something like this for my blog in the future. Out of all the food that is on there, I think that you might enjoy the Slow-Cooker Adobo Pulled Pork! It looks quite tasty and I will try to replicate this one day.

i am a food blog

Again, a blog with awesome visual style! All of the images make me want to stop what I am doing and go cook… but if I did that then you wouldn’t be reading this 😉 They also open the front page with a fun quote like:

“Ohmahgurd…get in mah belly!”

“Yaass…such tasty!”

and several more. So they have several hundred recipes, all of them looking absolutely beautiful! I picked out a few that you might want to try:

Smitten Kitchen

This food blog has been around since 2006! That is 9 years strong at this point! I could like about 10,000 recipes from this place, but it would be best if you explore on your own. If you click on the recipe index, not only is it grouped by food type but there is also a list of all the recipes sorted by the food content. Look for blueberries and see the 13 recipes that all contain them. Check out the Homesick Texan Carnitas!

RASAMALAYSIA

For a nice Asian flare check this blog out. This one is very socially active and has a ton of great recipes. I will be trying the Korean BBQ Chicken rather soon! Another blog founded in 2006 and touting more than 800 recipes so far!

 

I hope you enjoy this round up! The podcast is going strong and I will be adding more content including videos soon! Keep posted and let me know what you want to see out of this site.

And so the journey begins…

Off to become a CBJ!

So if you have been listening to my podcast then you probably heard Malcom Reed suggest that I try to become a Certified Barbecue Judge before I get in to competitions. So that’s where I am today!

I am going to see how much of the event I can record and maybe even get an episode or two out of the people there. I will take plenty of notes and will share as much information as I can.

So where is this going? I first want to get insight on what judges are going to be looking for, then I will look to actually judge at least one comp. Then my first competition!

What’s in it for you? You get to ride along with me and hopefully you try to do the same thing! Keep me posted if you are trying and let me know if you have questions.

Let’s do this!