BBQ

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BBQ

Post by Henrik on Tue Oct 01 2013, 17:46

Back in the old Shamu, we had a number of discussions about BBQ. There was the recurring debate as to who made the best BBQ, and obviously Texas residents like Pabs and RacerX claimed that Texas made the best BBQ. Wycco on the other hand claimed that Carolina BBQ was the best, and Greg supported him in this.

One point I would often bring out was that you never find Carolina BBQ restaurants (except perhaps for in Charlotte, but who the hell wants to go there?). Texas BBQ on the other hand is easy to find, and exceptionally good. Well, I am currently in Miami for work, and I found a restaurant serving Carolina BBQ!!

Last night I went out to find the fuss was all about. I ordered a plate of pulled pork, served with corn bread and sweet potato fries. It was really good! I can't say it was better than Texas BBQ, but it was a little bit different. The pulled pork had incredible taste, obviously for having been slow cooked for a long time. What I like was that it was not as sweet as Texas BBQ can be, and it had a little spicy kick to it. The sweet potato fries were excellent though, but I think that is more down to the restaurant and not Carolina BBQ.

So, my conclusion. Carolina BBQ is good, but I still have to say Texas is better. That said, I would more than happy to have Carolina BBQ from time to time...

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Re: BBQ

Post by TopContender on Wed Oct 02 2013, 03:33

You went to Miami and had BBQ?

Try Prime 112 in South beach, or walk around the Corner and eat at Joes Stone Crab for the typical tourist place that serves the local dish of the city. Personally I always end up at Sushi Rock for Lobster Dynamite. You can also ask for a good Cuban restaurant. You can't go wrong with that.
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Re: BBQ

Post by TopContender on Wed Oct 02 2013, 03:36

As for BBQ, I have a neighbor next door that recently bought a Big Green Egg. This ugly contraption is a komando style grill that make some tasty dinners. I can't go outside when he is cooking, or I'll end up hungry.
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Re: BBQ

Post by Henrik on Thu Oct 03 2013, 15:01

I had to check on Google what the hell a Big Green Egg is. Those I think are from an origonal design from Japan, and a friend from school who used to live in Japan as a kid had one in Geneva some 30 years ago. They re pretty cool, but I still prefer my gas grill.

Well I have left Miami now, and am in Bahamas for a couple of days. While in Miami I did also go and have some really good Peruvian food for the first time. Obviously they have ceviche which I love, but also a number of other really interesting dishes. Good experience.


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Re: BBQ

Post by TopContender on Thu Oct 03 2013, 20:36

Yeah that Ceviche can get mighty tasty down there.
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Re: BBQ

Post by eso on Fri Oct 04 2013, 06:31

It's an Apples/Oranges comparison Henrik. Southern pulled pork is frequently served with the spicy vinegar (red peppers infused in cider vinegar) while Texas BBQ is usually based on Brisket (Beef) with a dry rub and often a sweet BBQ sauce as well. Both can be very good but it's like trying to say which is better, Carnitas or Carne Asada?

A funny thing about both though is that they are crap cuts of meat. Pulled pork uses a Pork Shoulder, or a pork butt as they call it: a cut full of connective tissue that you wouldn't want to try to slice. By slow cooking properly it can pulled and shredded, leaving all the nasties behind.

Brisket is a tough chunk of meat, and loaded with collagen. Cooked too quickly the collagen hardens and it ends up with the consistency of shoe leather. A proper BBQing brisket still has a nice blanket of fat on the underside. For BBQ the meat is placed fat side up and it's best to keep the temperature around 160˚for about 16 hours. With the low temperature the collagen fully breaks down, and the fat slowly melts away keeping the meat from drying out. The result is a very tender, juicy and smokey cut of beef.

When I was building the high rise a few years ago I cooked BBQ for all the trades a few times. I brine the pork butts for 24hours in a sweet brine with asian spices, and then dry rub them before going on the fir. I just dry rub the briskets with a different rub than the pork. To serve at noon on Friday I'd start the fire at 3:00pm Thursday and put the briskets on at 5:00pm. I'd run back down to the site around 11:00 to stoke the fire a bit and then run home for some sleep. I'd return early and put the ribs and pork butts on around 5:00am. Around 10:00 am I'd start grilling the sausages.

The last one of these I did was 6 full briskets (-12 pounds each), 4 pork Butts (6-7 pounds each), 10 racks of ribs, ~100 spicy Italian sausages, a 40qt pot of beans, a bunch of cole slaw, rolls and beverages. We had one of these for the cooking:







I could grill on top on the fire box on the right, do the pork and ribs on the center section, and the briskets in the tower where the temp was easier to keep cooler. We also had a gas side burner for the beans that hung off the handle at the left side of the photo. It's a lot of work cooking that much food for that many people. I love to cook, but I have no idea how someone would choose to do that for a living...

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Re: BBQ

Post by Henrik on Fri Oct 04 2013, 16:01

Wow! That is a serious BBQ there eso! I would never attempt anything hat ambitious myself, but it sure does sound good.

I fully agree with you that it is like comparing apples and oranges. It was just one of these old Shamu things we used to fight about a long time ago, perhaps before you joined. Nothing serious about it, just Shamu stuff. It was just that I never had the chance to try Carolina pulled pork until now.

My type of BBQ is actually more grilling. It usually does not take more than max 20 minutes, and I do lamb racks or nice steaks. Lot's of fish as well, which is really quick to do like salmon or tuna.

Ended my last day in Bahamas last night with a wonderful conch chowder with coconut milk, followed by a (very) rare tuna steak with pepper. Was wonderful.

Now waiting to fly to Montreal via Toronto.

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Re: BBQ

Post by eso on Fri Oct 04 2013, 16:08

Wasn't it mostly Wycco and RacerX going on about the territorial BBQ? I started before I was around, but I caught the tail end of it enough to get the gist of it.

Doing quite a bit of traveling there Henrik? any pleasure or all business?


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Re: BBQ

Post by Henrik on Fri Oct 04 2013, 16:38

It's been all business until now (Miami and Nassau). But heading up to Montreal for a few days where Greg will join me and we will meet up with Veze!

Looking forward to going back to Montreal.

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Re: BBQ

Post by eso on Fri Oct 04 2013, 17:07

Excellent. Montreal is great. Have fun and say hi to Greg, veze and Daniel for me.

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Re: BBQ

Post by TopContender on Fri Oct 04 2013, 17:20

Hopefully you stayed at Atlantis. I hear that place is a lot of fun
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Re: BBQ

Post by Henrik on Fri Oct 04 2013, 22:47

Nope, stayed at the Hilton downtown Nassau. Not much fun...

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Re: BBQ

Post by da silva on Fri Oct 11 2013, 19:09

A shame you couldn't stop over in Toronto, I could've taken you out for some BBQ. shamuwink
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Re: BBQ

Post by Henrik on Fri Oct 11 2013, 20:27

Next time da silva. Mind you, we have already been to see you in Toronto, and had a memorable kart race too.

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Re: BBQ

Post by da silva on Fri Oct 11 2013, 21:16

Of course, a rematch on the track would be fun.....
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Re: BBQ

Post by PLAYLIFE on Mon Dec 30 2013, 01:57

Just started with the whole BBQ thing last year. Managed to pull myself away from my 'homeland' Italian cooking.

Bought a gas Weber Q 220, working my way through the more basic recipes. Despite my lack of knowledge, all have turned out quite good with compliments from friends and family...I guarantee you it's not my skill that makes the food taste good, it's the BBQ!

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Re: BBQ

Post by eso on Mon Dec 30 2013, 03:45

A little smoke and carbon build up makes lots of things taste better.


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Re: BBQ

Post by Henrik on Mon Dec 30 2013, 09:50

Winter here, so not really barbeque weather. Substituted with a teppanyaki last night. There are worst substitutes...

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Re: BBQ

Post by Danny Boy on Mon Dec 30 2013, 12:22

Henrik wrote:Winter here, so not really barbeque weather.

Lightweight;

When I was young; We use to chop down a tree and cut off all the branches with nothing but a blunt a stone flint.

Then we would pile up all the wood into a big heap of firewood, and to light the resulting firewood we would go out and catch a dragon with our bare hand and make it breath fire on the wood.

Then we killed the dragon by beating it to death with a rolled up manuscript and cooked and ate it.

But if I try and tell that to youngsters today, they wouldn't believe me.
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Re: BBQ

Post by Henrik on Mon Dec 30 2013, 12:48

I know what you mean. We also had to first hike 50 km through hip-deep snow to get to the tree!

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Re: BBQ

Post by PLAYLIFE on Mon Dec 30 2013, 14:19

eso wrote:A little smoke and carbon build up makes lots of things taste better.


eso

Ya ha, just started smoking in the last few months. Had to seal up the BBQ to ensure enough smoke stayed in but not seal it too much that no oxygen gets in. Managed to get the right balance but found it difficult to get a constant low temperature on the Q (from what I've read, not the piece of equipment for low and slow).

It's a lot of fun, experimenting with lots of different brines and rubs. Thinking of doing a rib roast (beef) tomorrow if the local butcher has the cut, any suggestions for method?
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Re: BBQ

Post by TopContender on Mon Dec 30 2013, 21:28

You should have BBQed the lobster you had for Christmas.
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Re: BBQ

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