Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible

Barbecue University™

Crash Course on Grilling and Smoking with Wood

Crash Course on Grilling and Smoking with Wood

Here’s the third “class” in our ongoing Barbecue University™ blog series—a crash course on wood. Wood is the original and, to my mind, still the best fuel for grilling, and grill masters from Montevideo to Munich back me up on this. Charcoal and propane or natural gas produce heat, but only wood gives you both heat and flavor. That flavor is, of course, smoke—made up of carbon compounds like guaiacol, also found in roasted coffee, and syringol, the active...

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How to Make the Perfect Pot of Chili—Start with Barbecued Meat

How to Make the Perfect Pot of Chili—Start with Barbecued Meat

Sometimes the best comfort foods come ladled from a pot—especially during the freeze of February. Speaking of pots, everyone should know how to cook up a pot of chili. Fierce controversies surround what constitutes the perfect bowl o’ red. Texans prefer all-beef chili—ideally, with meat cubed rather than ground—and points are deducted for adding beans and other fillers. In New Mexico it’s the chile peppers that matter and some versions don’t even...

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Barbecue University™

A Crash Course on Charcoal: Types of Charcoal for Grilling

A Crash Course on Charcoal: Types of Charcoal for Grilling

Charcoal represents one of man’s very first technological achievements; it was in use as early as 200,000 B.C. When wood is burned slowly without oxygen it produces charcoal. The charring removes the water and most of the flavor-producing chemical compounds of the wood, leaving a carbon-rich fuel that burns hot, cleanly, and efficiently. Charcoal also produces a more concentrated fire. No wonder the vast majority of the world’s grill masters burn charcoal. But not all charcoals are the same. Here’s a scorecard to help you identify the players....

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Planet Barbecue

Singapore: Crossroads of Asian Grilling

Singapore: Crossroads of Asian Grilling

Next week and beyond, Chinese and many other Asian cultures will celebrate Lunar New Year (more commonly known as Chinese New Year), and Singapore—one of the biggest multicultural foodie destinations in the world despite it being such a tiny island—will join in on the festivities. Here’s an excerpt from my cookbook Planet Barbecue! that’ll make you want to try grilled food from all over Asia. What would you call a place where you could breakfast on grilled bread with...

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Game Day! A Superlative Menu for Super Bowl Sunday

Game Day! A Superlative Menu for Super Bowl Sunday

Top two photos by Richard Dallett. I’m writing from Palm Springs, California, where a very dedicated film crew and I are shooting Season 2 of Steven Raichlen's Project Smoke, the show I created to prove smoking is the new grilling. But I haven’t forgotten that this Sunday—Super Bowl Sunday—is the second biggest eating day in the U.S. next to Thanksgiving. (Can you believe this is the 50th Super Bowl?) When the Denver Broncos meet the Carolina Panthers at Levi’s Stadium...

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The Smoked Salmon Whisperer

The Smoked Salmon Whisperer

Smoke masters go to extraordinary lengths to perfect their craft, chopping and seasoning their own wood, butchering their own meats, spending sleepless nights tending pits or smokehouses. But as far as I know, only one serenades his smoked salmon with piano music. His name is Ole Hansen of Hansen & Lydersen in London. At six foot three, with long blond hair and piercing blue eyes, he looks more like one of his Viking ancestors than the bespoke salmon master to star chefs and...

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Barbecue University™

Crash Course on Grilling: The Anatomy of a Grill

Crash Course on Grilling: The Anatomy of a Grill

We’re pleased to introduce a new blog series on BarbecueBible.com: Barbecue University™. Every few weeks we’ll give you a crash course on a particular aspect of grilling, from essential gear and fuels to the indispensable techniques. Up this week: The Anatomy of a Grill. Master it and you’ll make more informed decisions when buying and using your grill. Travel Planet Barbecue with me and you’ll find grills of every size, shape, and design. Despite this incredible diversity, all grills share similar...

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Smoke Your Super Bowl Sweepstakes: Enter for a Chance to Win a Pit Barrel Cooker!

Smoke Your Super Bowl Sweepstakes: Enter for a Chance to Win a Pit Barrel Cooker!

Whether your home team made it or not, the Super Bowl is a must-watch event for folks across the country. And at some gatherings, the big screen TV isn't the main attraction—rather, food will take center stage, and will be enjoyed with abandon. For those of us who feel this way, might I suggest that you get out your snow shovel, clear a path to your grill or smoker, and make some of your Super Bowl favorites? We've partnered with our friends to bring one lucky...

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