Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible

My New Book, Man Made Meals, is Here

My New Book, Man Made Meals, is Here

You may have heard a rumor that I’m writing a book that is not about barbecue. Yes, it’s true. It’s called Man Made Meals: The Essential Cookbook For Guys, and it’s about everything a man should know how to do in the kitchen—from shucking oysters to cooking up kick-ass chili to flambéing a dessert—because cooking well is the best way to eat well and bring pleasure to your family, friends, and most importantly, to yourself. This being a book for guys, of course...

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The Science of Brining

The Science of Brining

Photo of brined turkey by Flickr user austinmatherne Believe it or not, brining is a hotly debated topic. (Does the barbecue world ever agree on anything?) Some people swear by it, while others scoff at the effort and time it can take (as little as 15 minutes or as long as several weeks). But nobody can dispute this: Brining makes meat juicier. Why? It’s in the science. Lean meats, like chicken breasts, pork chops, shrimp, or fish fillets, trip up many...

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What My Mom Taught Me About BBQ—And About Life

What My Mom Taught Me About BBQ—And About Life

Photo (clockwise): Roasted Chicken + Bacon Sundaes from Man Made Meals; Roasted Tomatoes by simpleprovisions; Roasted Potatoes by emmadiscovery My mother was a ballet dancer. She was also a lousy cook. While other moms were baking cookies for classroom parties, her life was a frenzied sequence of classes, practicing, rehearsals, and performances. This simple truth, as much as any subsequent culinary training, shaped my career as a food writer. Even if my mother had enjoyed cooking, her devotion to...

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The Salsas of Mexico

The Salsas of Mexico

Photo (clockwise from left): Grilled Tomatillos by Taz; Pico de Gallo by jeffreyw; Mango Salsa by Maggie Hoffman Quick: what’s America’s preferred condiment? Ketchup? Mustard? Mayo? No, mis amigos: it’s salsa. Born in pre-Colombian Mexico, this ancient condiment uses every flavor blaster in the New World arsenal—chilies, tomatoes, alliums, citrus, even squash seeds. And if you think salsa comes solely tomato red or tomatillo green, you haven’t experienced melon, papaya, or pineapple salsa. You should. Think of salsa as edible house music: the mellow fruitiness of tomatoes or tomatillos (yes, botanically both are fruits) electrified by fresh or dried chilies. The buzz of fresh...

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Win a Copy of Man Made Meals: The Essential Cookbook for Guys

Win a Copy of Man Made Meals: The Essential Cookbook for Guys

Enter to win one of five copies of my not-yet-released book, Man Made Meals: The Essential Cookbook for Guys (coming out on May 6th). You can enter through Friday, April 25th. a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Introducing The Grill Lab

Introducing The Grill Lab

Over the years, I've fielded literally thousands of questions about grilling and barbecuing. Everything from "What are BTUs and do they really matter when buying a grill)? to "Why is my brisket still tough—I cooked it to 190 degrees?" And do you know what I've noticed consistently? People from all over the country (and possibly the rest of Planet Barbecue) are challenged by the same foods, like whole birds, ribs, briskets, pork shoulders, and steaks. Well, I'm...

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Wham, Bam, Thank You, Ham

Wham, Bam, Thank You, Ham

“If you have a ham in the house, you can face any situation.” So observed Edna Lewis, grand dame of Southern cooking (and spiritual founder of the Southern Foodways Alliance). She wasn’t talking about precious worldly cured hams like Italian prosciutto, Spanish jamón iberíco, or French jambon de Bayonne. No, Ms. Lewis was referring to good old American ham—pink, salty, meaty, moist, and above all, smoky. The kind of ham you’d be proud to put on your table. In America, the cured ham family tree splits...

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Fire It Up for Passover

Fire It Up for Passover

At sundown on April 14, Jews all over the world will celebrate the start of Passover. I’ll be one of them. This eight-day holiday—my favorite in the Jewish calendar—commemorates the escape of the ancient Hebrews from slavery in Egypt and the settling of what would become Israel. It’s a bigger-than-life holiday full of cinematic events: building the pyramids, Pharaoh’s daughters finding baby Moses floating on the Nile, Moses transforming his staff into a serpent, the ten...

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