Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible

Barbecue University™

Barbecue University™

Boston Butt Basics

Boston Butt Basics

Sorry, Stephen Hawking, but “the discovery of a new dish does more for human happiness than the discovery of a new star.” So wrote a French food philosopher named Brillat-Savarin in 1825 (yeah, the same Brillat who gave his name to the obscenely rich French cheese and a rum-soaked cake for dessert). I don’t know what dish the Frenchman had in mind, but for me it would have been pork butt. Sure, pork chops, ribs, tenderloin—even trotters and snouts—have added much to human happiness. But when it comes to sheer barbecue bliss, I snap my fat-slicked fingers for pork butt. Without...

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Barbecue University™

The Secrets to the Best Thanksgiving Turkey Ever

The Secrets to the Best Thanksgiving Turkey Ever

Desperate times call for desperate measures. Especially when it comes to turkey. In our collective quest to find an antidote to the dry birds of Thanksgivings past, most of us have tried—at least once—a number of unconventional cooking techniques. Draping butter-soaked cheesecloth over the breast, for example. Or awkwardly flipping the bird from back to front and front to back as if it were a restless sleeper in the oven. Roasting the turkey in a buttered paper grocery bag....

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Barbecue University™

Beer Can Turkey for Thanksgiving

Beer Can Turkey for Thanksgiving

You wouldn’t, would you—not with America’s most revered culinary emblem—Thanksgiving turkey? In this age of culinary iconoclasm, shouldn’t a few classics remain sacred? So don’t let a man with a can even get near a fowl so profoundly American, Benjamin Franklin wanted to make it our national bird. Well, recent times have broadened our definition of icons—and turkey. The latter has been ground into burgers, stuffed into hot dog and sausage...

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Barbecue University™

Spit-Roasted Thanksgiving Turkey That’s Got Mojo

Spit-Roasted Thanksgiving Turkey That’s Got Mojo

For me, the big question for Thanksgiving is what’s the best way to cook turkey. Over the years, I’ve tried dozens of methods, from roasting, baking, braising to deep-frying. As you might imagine, my current favorite method involves building a fire—specifically, firing up a smoker or a grill. Over the next month, I’ll be sharing with you my favorite live-fire cooked turkeys. To get you started—here’s a adobo-marinated, mojo-sauced,...

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Barbecue University™

The Raichlen Barbecue Playlist

The Raichlen Barbecue Playlist

Grilling on Martha's Vineyard with Tony Garnier I’ve never met Bob Dylan. But I’ve sure seen him in concert a lot and I’m always playing his music. So when I met his bass player, Tony Garnier, on Martha’s Vineyard, one year, and discovered that he’s nearly as grill obsessed as I am, I immediately invited him over for a barbecue. The guy can play, and man, does he make a mean gumbo. Over the years, I’ve met Frank Zappa (just off recording Absolutely Free) and Rod Stewart (way back when he was the singer for the Jeff Beck Group—remember them?). I never met Jim...

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Barbecue University™

Pizza Hits the Grill

Pizza Hits the Grill

If barbecue traded on the stock market, I’d buy futures in grilled pizza. Flame-seared pies now turn up at innovative restaurants across North America—and around the world. Grill manufacturers sell a broad array of pizza accessories, from pizza stones to peels to cutters. The Companion Group—manufacturers of my Best of Barbecue and Planet Barbecue lines—recently created a new division called Pizzacraft, devote to the art of pizza on the grill. Wood-burning ovens are no longer the province solely...

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Barbecue University™

10 Questions with Derrick Riches, the Barbecue Expert of About.com

10 Questions with Derrick Riches, the Barbecue Expert of About.com

Each month, millions of visitors (literally) come to About.com with questions about barbecuing and grilling. And each month, a lanky blond man with a penchant for wearing black answers those questions: Derrick Riches from Salt Lake City. Riches grew up hunting, fishing, and camp cooking in mountains of the western U.S., and caught barbecue fever during a summer in central Texas. He has grilled over everything from a hole in the ground to a $20,000 stainless steel gas super grill, and has been quoted by media outlets from the Wall Street Journal to the BBC. Of his current position with About.com (held since 1997),...

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Barbecue University™

Ode to Apples

Ode to Apples

October is National Apple Month—not the mention, prime picking and eating time for some of America’s best apples. What better occasion to celebrate the contributions this storied fruit has made to American barbecue? Apples possess a natural affinity for pork, which probably gained the fruit admission to the barbecue world in the first place. But don’t stop there. Apple juice, apple sauce, and cider vinegar are essential ingredients in regional American barbecue...

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Barbecue University™

Barbecue for Breakfast

Barbecue for Breakfast

It's 6 a.m., Chappaquiddick Island, Martha's Vineyard. My favorite time of day. The sun has just risen, spilling golden flames over the horizon. The wind rustles the treetops, and in the distance I can hear the surf hit the shore at Norton's Point. My family is asleep. The phones are mercifully silent. It feels like I’m the only person awake on the island. So I do what any barbecue-obsessed male would do at six in the morning. I fire up my grill....

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Barbecue University™

7 Great Ways to Barbecue & Grill with Beer

7 Great Ways to Barbecue & Grill with Beer

A barbecue without beer is like, well, a pit without smoke or a grill without fire. And the beer’s not just for drinking – it’s a lifeblood of live-fire cooking. So, pop open a cold one, fire up your grill, and try one of these flame-tested techniques featuring brew. What are the possibilities? Let me count the ways: As a soaking medium for wood chips. Slows the combustion rate of the wood so it smolders and smokes, not burns. Gives you a hint of beer flavor in...

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