Photos by Richard Dallett.
2016 was a very full year, with the release of the Project Smoke cookbook and a book tour, the launch of Project Smoke Season Two, lots of great eating—and tons of new recipes on the site. Besides the ones we already revealed as our most popular recipes of all time, these recipes were tops on BarbecueBible.com during 2016.
Barbecued Pork Belly
Bacon is about smoke and salt. Barbecue is about smoke and spice. They join forces in this barbecued pork belly. What is most remarkable about this sizzling, spice-crusted barbecued belly is how it retains the sweet, meaty taste of fresh pork. You’d never mistake it for bacon.
Bourbon Brown Sugar Smoked Pork Loin
This pork loin plays pinball on your taste buds, offering the sweetness of brown sugar, the tang of mustard, and the rich smoke flavor of bacon (the bacon also helps keep the meat moist). And just for polish, there’s a Tennessee whiskey glaze.
The key is to cure the salmon in salt for at least a day (this both flavors and dehydrates the fish), then rinse it, dry it, and blast it with wood smoke, but—and this is a very important but—no heat. The low temperature (around 80°F) is crucial, for your goal is to smoke the salmon without cooking it. This gives you the translucent sheen, velvety texture, forthright smoke flavor, and briny marine tang (complete with a hint of iodine) characteristic of truly world-class cold-smoked salmon.
Whole Smoked Beef Tenderloin with Ember-Roasted Peppers
Yes, it’s extravagant. And, no, it’s not inexpensive. But it’s guaranteed to delight the carnivores in your circle—especially when smoked to sanguine perfection. An added bonus? It’s ridiculously easy to prepare—you can even do it ahead—and can be served warm or at room temperature.
St. Louis Ribs with Vanilla-Brown Sugar Glaze
The St. Louis rib offers the best of two ribs: the lush marbling of baby backs and the meaty richness of spareribs. Picture a center-cut section of a rack of spareribs trimmed down to the approximate shape and size of a rack of baby backs. It’s easy to cook, tender to the tooth, with flavor that just doesn’t quit.
Chicken wings enhanced with smoky flavor, smothered in jalapeño sauce, and topped with cilantro and peanuts. Napkins and cold beer required.
Bacon, Ham and Cheese Chicken Thighs
These bacon-wrapped smoked chicken thighs may sound like pure Americana, but the inspiration comes from Belgrade. In Serbia, grilled chicken and pork are routinely stuffed with smoked ham and piquant cheese.
Brisket on the Bone
Each meaty bone tips the scale at 2 to 2½ pounds. Seasonings? Keep them simple: salt, pepper, and hot red pepper flakes. Focus on the meat and smoke.
Smoked Beer-Can Burgers (Plus 3 Variations)
Strips of bacon—c’mon, you knew bacon would be involved—are wrapped around the outside of each burger before the beer can is eased out of the meat. Then the burgers are stuffed with cheese and/or other ingredients before being indirect grilled over medium heat. When served on buns, these bad boys are jaw-stretchers.
If you like baked potatoes (and who doesn’t), you’re going to love this technique. Smoke-roasted potatoes are one of the most addictive foods known to man.