General

Waxin’ philosophical

Joining the Cult

Big Green Egg

She’s a beaut!

I have used a gas grill forever but I knew that to really BBQ one needed to get comfortable with hardwood charcoal. So, I set about determining the best smoker for me. In the two years I have been looking to undertake this little project, the Big Green Egg has surged in popularity. If I had bought one back then, it would have been maybe a bit unique. (My husband likes to say that I am always on the leading edge of mainstream. Nothing wrong with that!) Now I have many friends who own a Big Green Egg and not one of them has a bad thing to say about it. In fact, they tend to rhapsodize about it upon occasion. A quick online search links you to all kinds of die-hard enthusiasts. But I didn’t just want to buy the hype — I wanted to know it was the smoker for me.* And worth the not-so-insignificant investment.

So, I went to a place I had visited before and asked an expert. It took Al at Barbeques Galore about sixty seconds to explain to me why the best choice was… the Big Green Egg. He was very articulate in his explanation and he detailed his personal experience. He could talk some BBQ, that guy. He sold me a @#!%-load of stuff. And I have put almost all of it to good use so far. Thank you, Al!

When I told one of my co-workers about my purchase, she said, “Ah, you’ve joined the cult.” And I guess I have. They seem like nice people so far. In my first semi-disastrous attempt at grilling pizza, I discovered Fred, who owns Tasty Licks BBQ Supply and has some pretty awesome Big Green Egg videos. Fred is the kind of guy I would like to have a beer with someday. And maybe he can show me how to keep my pizza dough from sticking to my peel. (Gonna try that one again this weekend so stay tuned.) Based on some of the folks who have commented or followed me already (like Griffin’s Grub and Clint T,) I can tell I will have a lot of Big Green Egg mentors. Thanks, guys!

Okay, I think it’s about time to get into the eatin’. Up tomorrow: pork shoulder.

* I briefly toyed with buying this lovely Kamado smoker but decided to go with tried and true. If only the Big Green Egg came in pink… What can I say? I’m a girl.

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Gettin’ Started!

Photo credit: brentonwoo

So, you may be wondering what Zen (a school of Buddhism emphasizing the value of meditation and intuition) and BBQ (low and slow, baby) have in common…

A couple of years ago, a friend (shout out to you, Anthony!) sent me a great book. Some might call it a cookbook but I think it is far more than that. If you love BBQ and have not read Legends of Texas Barbecue by Robb Walsh, you need to buy it now. Especially if you are a Texan or know a Texan or even just like Texas. (Ironically, my copy came to me from NYC.) Aside from his fabulous recipes and great introduction to the basics, Walsh gives you plenty of history and pit boss secrets, plus some dish on the constant debate about what real Texas BBQ is all about.

I am a Texan and reading this cookbook was like a cross between a family reunion and a tent revival. Still, the further I got into the recipes, the more I kept thinking, “Man, you have to have a lot of patience to BBQ.” Gentle reader, I am not known for my patience. I am a damn fine cook but just ask my husband what it is like to watch me bake a cake. (Who has time to measure every little ingredient?) But, while reading a recipe for beef ribs, a little light bulb went off… I realized BBQ might be the perfect kind of meditation for me. Process + patience = some awesome food. I like that equation.

I will be posting recipes, tips, what-not-to-do’s, and excellent BBQ meals — so come on back for seconds anytime! Can one achieve inner peace and the perfect brisket? Let’s find out…

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