Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible

Under the Hood

Spring Returns—And Not a Minute Too Soon

Spring Returns—And Not a Minute Too Soon

Polar vortexes. Texas hookers. Thunder sleet. If nothing else, this winter added new words to the nation’s weather vocabulary as it spread inconvenience and misery from Bozeman to Boston, from International Falls to Atlanta. But spring officially arrived Thursday, March 20—not a moment too soon. Many of you shoveled the path to your grill and kept smoking and grilling this winter. We salute you. And if you're just now waking your charcoal grill or smoker out of its winter hibernation, here’s what you...

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Eat Your Words

Miami Spice E-Book Giveaway

Miami Spice E-Book Giveaway

I’ve got big news. In a time when hardly anything is free anymore, I’m giving something away. For this week only (through Monday), you can download my Miami Spice e-book by signing up for the Up in Smoke newsletter. In the newsletter, you’ll get biweekly news, culture, techniques, and tips that will help you become your best grilling self. The Miami Spice e-book offers over 200 recipes with the irresistible convergence of...

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Planet Barbecue

Sauces, South American-Style

Sauces, South American-Style

“The best sauce in the world is hunger,” observed Cervantes. (La mejor salsa del mundo es la hambre.) I bet the author of Don Quixote never tasted Argentinean chimichurri or molho à companha from Brazil. Argentinians could no more imagine grilled beef without their tangy, garlicky, olive oil- and herb-based chimichurri than Brazilians could dig into traditional churrasco (a belt-loosening array of spit-roasted meats carved off sword-like spits directly onto your dinner plate) without a bowl of onion- and chile-laced molho à companha (country salsa). We North Americans may think we have a monopoly on barbecue sauce. But since the moment our prehistoric...

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Corned Beef Hits the Smoker

Corned Beef Hits the Smoker

It was just last week that we honored Carnival (“bye-bye meat,” literally) with a hot- smoked New Orleans-style gumbo. But there’s a reprieve on the horizon—the Feast of St. Patrick (which falls on Monday, March 17). That means a lot of Americans—Irish or not and Catholic or not—will consume prodigious quantities of whiskey, beer or stout, and corned beef. You can’t get more Irish than corned beef, right? Guess again. Corned beef brisket...

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Barbecue University

Steven Raichlen’s Barbecue Birthday Menu

Steven Raichlen’s Barbecue Birthday Menu

Call it a busman’s holiday. When my birthday rolls around in this blustery month of March (don’t try to guess when or how old), I’ll celebrate with, what else, a barbecue. And being the hands-on, DIY, control freak kind of guy I am, I’ll probably cook it myself. Oh, I’ll have help from son-in-law Gabriel, the master mixologist of the family. I’m thinking something smoky, like an Oaxacan Manhattan—made with mezcal. (Gabriel also grills...

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Not Your Mom’s Meatballs

Not Your Mom’s Meatballs

Italians call them polpetti. The French name is boulettes. For Swedes they’re known as frikadeller, while Mexicans enjoy them as albondigas. Whatever you call them, you know a great meatball when you taste it: ground meat, bread, and seasonings combined into flavorful spheres that are substantial enough to satisfy you but not so dense they give you heartburn. So what makes a great meatball? Well, first there’s the...

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Just in Time for Mardi Gras—Gumbo Gets Smoked

Just in Time for Mardi Gras—Gumbo Gets Smoked

Little known fact about me: Long before I wrote Planet Barbecue or taped Primal Grill; long before I founded Barbecue University and launched the Best of Barbecue line of grilling accessories; long before I reviewed restaurants for Boston Magazine and penned a wine and spirits column for GQ, I majored in French literature and studied medieval cooking in Europe. One of my favorite paintings then—and now—was The Fight Between Carnival and Lent...

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Chili Goes Up in Smoke

Chili Goes Up in Smoke

Chili concocted outside of Texas is usually a weak, apologetic imitation of the real thing. —Lyndon B. Johnson, 36th President of the United States If you have invited a Texan to your table, do not—I repeat, do not—serve chili. You might have the best of intentions. But trust me: Nothing good will come of it. Texans have very strong, deeply embedded opinions about their “bowl of red.” There are arguments about what should go into it...

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