Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible

World BBQ

When Kimchi Meets the Grill

When Kimchi Meets the Grill

Excerpted from Smoke & Pickles by Edward Lee (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2013. Photographs by Grant Cornett. Perhaps you’re a Korean barbecue fanatic already and you have several jars of kimchi in your fridge. (Quick test: when you pick up The Barbecue! Bible, does the page open to 520—or Planet Barbecue! to page 50?) Or perhaps you’re looking for some explosive new flavors for your next pork shoulder or beef ribs. Well, I’ve got just one word for you: kimchi. This turbocharged Korean...

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Planet Barbecue

The Barbecue Sauces of Europe

The Barbecue Sauces of Europe

A sauce has the power to transform the simplest grilled seafood or chicken into an event. You now know about regional American barbecue sauces and the sauces of South America. Today, we look at some of the best grilling condiments you may have never heard of: the barbecue sauces of Europe. Salsa Verde (Italy): Don’t confuse this one with Mexico’s tomatillo-based sauce of the same name. Italy’s venerable salsa verde (“green sauce”) includes all the components of a good vinaigrette, and more: freshly chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley; olive oil (the best and freshest...

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Battle of the Hibachis

Battle of the Hibachis

It’s the antithesis of the modern North American stainless steel super grill (you know, that propane-fired monster with multiple heat zones, infrared sear station and industrial strength rotisserie). But when it comes to providing maximum grilling efficiency in minimal space, few grills can beat its direct, concentrated, blast-furnace heat. It’s the compact Japanese-style tabletop grill known in the West as the hibachi. Without it there would be no yakitori or robatayaki. Get the Yakitori Like They Make It in Japan recipe....

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Grill the Ultimate Quesadilla

Grill the Ultimate Quesadilla

The quesadilla burst onto America’s culinary landscape in the 1990s. It was love at first bite. We loved the earthy-flavored, chewy-crisp tortillas, the gooey filling of melted cheese, the sting of the jalapeños. In true American fashion, we made Mexico’s “grilled cheese sandwich” our own, piling on chicken, duck, shrimp, even lobster. Makes you wonder if some of the more extravagant versions still contain cheese. In much of Mexico, quesadillas are actually cooked on a comal...

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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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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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Planet Barbecue

A Yankee Grills Bratwurst

A Yankee Grills Bratwurst

Sometimes, desperate times call for desperate measures. Some years ago, I found myself at a book signing with a much larger crowd than expected. We had bratwurst -- provided by one of my TV sponsors at the time, Wisconsin-based Johnsonville Sausage, LLC. We had a grill -- that mammoth kettle-on-steroids known as the Weber Ranch (the one so many of you have e-mailed us about). What we did not have was manpower -- trained volunteers able to cook the brats without turning...

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Planet Barbecue

Down the Hatch! Celebrate New Mexico’s Flame-Roasted Chiles

Down the Hatch! Celebrate New Mexico’s Flame-Roasted Chiles

On Saturday and Sunday, August 31 and September 1 -- Labor Day weekend -- 30,000 heat seekers will converge on tiny Hatch, New Mexico, for the 42nd annual Hatch Chile Festival. The town of Hatch, population 1680, is the self-proclaimed “Chile Capital of the World” -- and who are we to argue? A few years ago, I visited New Mexico during chile season, which lasts only a few weeks during August and September. As I noted in BBQ USA, “Every barbecue region...

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Planet Barbecue

Corn Meets Grill

Corn Meets Grill

Travel the world’s barbecue trail and you’ll find a number of constants. Every culture has its version of grilled ground meat, for example, from Middle Eastern kofta to Pakistani chapli kebab to the classic American hamburger. Meat on a stick is another constant, morphing from Peruvian anticuchos to French brochettes to Azeri lula, Indonesian sate, and Turkish shish kebab. Summertime, with its farmers markets and roadside produce stands,...

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Hot Stuff

Turn Up the Heat with Chile Peppers! 15 Hot Facts & Grilling Tips

Turn Up the Heat with Chile Peppers! 15 Hot Facts & Grilling Tips

The iconic movie character Forrest Gump (played by Tom Hanks) famously observed life “was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.” The same is true for any capsicum that’s not the mild-mannered bell pepper. Even a single chile plant can produce fruit of varying potency, from mild to tongue blistering. So eating chiles is akin to Russian roulette. On YouTube we watched in horror as one culinary thrill-seeker, Jamie Kocher, ate a bhut jolokia, more commonly known as the...

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