Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible

Grilling Techniques

Barbecue University™

Grilling in the Embers

Grilling in the Embers

This form of grilling is as old as humankind itself. Back before man invented grill grates or gridirons or even sharpened sticks for making shish kebabs, people cooked foods in the fire. Literally in the fire. Precisely, right in the coals. They laid root vegetables or meat directly on the embers and let the radiant heat of the coals do the cooking. When the food was ready, the ashes were brushed off. Barbecue was born. I like to call this primitive kind of grilling...

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Project Smoke Quiz: Know Your BBQ Techniques

Project Smoke Quiz: Know Your BBQ Techniques

Which of these barbecue techniques are in your repertoire? Test your knowledge of barbecue and grilling techniques with this short quiz. Click here to learn more BBQ techniques. Take another quiz on barbecue dishes from around the world.

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Smoking on a Gas Grill: Is It Possible?

Smoking on a Gas Grill: Is It Possible?

Best of Barbecue Cast Iron Smoking Grate/Platform How do you smoke on a gas grill? My normal advice: don’t. Gas grills work well for direct grilling, indirect grilling, and spit-roasting, but most do a poor job with smoking. The problem is the wide venting in the back of most gas grills, which allows the smoke to escape before it has a chance to flavor the food. Gas grills simply don’t give you the crusty bark, crimson smoke ring, and rich smoke flavor characteristic of meats smoked on a wood- or charcoal-burning...

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Techniques

Smart Smoking: Build a Long-Lasting Charcoal Fire

Smart Smoking: Build a Long-Lasting Charcoal Fire

Planet Barbecue’s most accomplished pit masters are what Steven calls “process-oriented.” In other words, the convenient push-button ignition and regulated fuel flow of gas and pellet grills and smokers hold little allure for them. They take immense pride in building a noble fire with wood and/or charcoal and maintaining it for the duration of the smoke session, sometimes dusk to dawn (or until the beer runs out). But the other night—as in the middle of the night—it occurred to me, as I pulled...

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Salt Brick Chicken and More

Salt Brick Chicken and More

Pollo al mattone (chicken under a brick) is one of the glories of Italian grilling. It’s so revered by Italian grill masters, that two food-obsessed cities claim its parentage: Florence and Rome. The theory is simple: you grill a spatchcocked chicken under a foiled brick. The weight of the brick compresses the meat, producing a firm, pleasing texture and crackling crisp skin. And the technique keeps delicate meats, like chicken breasts, from drying out on the grill....

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3-2-1 Ribs Revisited: Is It Time for New Math?

3-2-1 Ribs Revisited: Is It Time for New Math?

Most serious practitioners consider barbecue an art, the outcome of which depends on knowledge, skill, and intuition. Which is why I’m skeptical of formulaic approaches like the 3-2-1 method for cooking pork spare ribs. Last year, in what turned out to be one of my most visited blog posts to date, I wrote: And if you serve ribs cooked by the 3-2-1 method, 95 percent of the people who taste them will react with delight and will declare you a genius. ...

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The 10 Commandments of Smoking

The 10 Commandments of Smoking

Smoking is easy but it isn't always simple. I've broken down some of the essential concepts here. Follow these Ten Commandments and you'll master smoking in no time, and you'll have a lot of fun—and satisfaction—in the process. For more specifics on the fuels, equipment, and techniques to master, check out my book, Project Smoke. Pass along the wisdom: Download your favorites from the images below and share with your friends...

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For Labor Day: 10 Indispensable Tips for Grilling Sausage from Jake Klein

For Labor Day: 10 Indispensable Tips for Grilling Sausage from Jake Klein

Labor Day is fast approaching (after a weekend Project Smoke marathon on Create TV). Our approach? Keep it simple. That means sausage, lots of sausage. Interesting sausage. And when it comes to sausage grilling expertise, I turn to our house authority, my stepson, Jake Klein. Jake owns Jake’s Handcrafted, a Brooklyn sausage gastro-pub, where all the sausage is made and smoked on the premises. Traditional sausage, like Jake’s celebrated pepper- and mace-scented...

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Ribs in a Hurry: 5 Great Techniques

Ribs in a Hurry: 5 Great Techniques

Ribs—crusty with spices, fragrant with wood smoke, sizzling with fat and caramelized sauce—invoke the spirit of barbecue like no other meat. Plus, they are unabashedly fun to eat, channeling through our DNA the same hand-to-mouth pleasure our cave-dwelling ancestors experienced after they embraced the power of live-fire cooking. Bet you could go for a slab right now. But wait—it’s a weeknight. And ribs take hours and hours to cook, right? Yes and no. If you’re a devotee of the enormously...

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Filipino Barbecue: It’s in the Stuffing

Filipino Barbecue: It’s in the Stuffing

It gives me great pleasure to introduce this month’s guest blogger, Alex Paman. You may recognize his name from the Barbecue Board (and from my book Planet Barbecue). Alex is my go to guy when I want to know more about Filipino barbecue. And Filipino barbecue is one of the world’s best-kept food secrets. The following makes me hungry just to read about and I bet it will you, too. –Steven Lechon baboy (roast pig). The very words make a Filipino’s...

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