Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible

Flavors

Planet Barbecue

The Best Grilling Sauce on Planet Barbecue

The Best Grilling Sauce on Planet Barbecue

There must be a thousand restaurants in Tokyo like the Izakaya-Tomotsu near the train station in the Chiyoda-Ku ward: eight stools lined up at an L-shaped counter; and outdoors, two rickety tables with beer crates for chairs. This rough-and-tumble yakitori parlor serves up every imaginable cut of grilled chicken, from the leg, wing, neck, and skin to the liver, gizzard, heart—and a great deal more. All this comes from a closet-size kitchen dominated by a charcoal...

Read more →

Barbecue University™

Grilling with Cherry Wood and Fresh Cherries

Grilling with Cherry Wood and Fresh Cherries

When it comes to flavor, nothing can beat the aroma of wood smoke. You may be familiar with using hickory, apple or oak wood, but have you tried smoking with cherry wood? Cherry can be used the same way you would other varieties: toss soaked wood chips on the coals of your charcoal grill or add them to the smoker box of your gas grill. I came to appreciate fragrant cherry wood during my sojourn to the Pacific Northwest—Cherry Wood Chips are...

Read more →

Planet Barbecue

Celebrate Chinese New Year with Five-Spice Powder Ribs

Celebrate Chinese New Year with Five-Spice Powder Ribs

Have you celebrated the Chinese New Year yet this winter? Why not use what time is left of the 15-day annual celebration, and start a new tradition for your family. As I've written in the past, Chinese culture generally shies away from grilling as a cooking method. But the dishes that are grilled will bring you new flavors that will delight your taste buds and have you marking your calendar for this season every year. Traditionally, we may think of duck...

Read more →

Hot Stuff

Go Wild on Fat Tuesday with Wings, Shrimp, and Much More!

Go Wild on Fat Tuesday with Wings, Shrimp, and Much More!

Today is Mardi Gras, better known as “Fat Tuesday.” It’s the last hurrah for observant Christians, who beginning tomorrow, will start a 46-day period of fasting leading up to Easter Sunday. (Loosely translated, Carnival, from the Latin carne vale, means “farewell to meat.”) There was once a practical as well as a liturgical purpose behind Lent. Peasants couldn’t afford to overwinter their animals, so there was generally an ample supply of...

Read more →

Barbecue University™

How to Grill Fruit and Intensify Flavor

How to Grill Fruit and Intensify Flavor

Grilling can bring out the best in many fruits, intensifying the flavors and caramelizing the natural sugars. And they’re not just for dessert: fruit can be incorporated into drinks (Grilled Sangria), appetizers (Bacon-Grilled Dates), and even condiments (Pineapple Salsa). Grilled fruit can play all the roles. Here are some of my favorite ways to expand your grilling repertoire by bringing fruit to smoke and fire. These recipes will challenge your taste buds and “wow” your party guests...

Read more →

Planet Barbecue

Like It Hot—Grill It Hot

Like It Hot—Grill It Hot

As the summer kicks into high gear and temperatures soar, the best way to beat the heat is . . . to join it. Fiery foods make you sweat, and perspiration is the body’s natural cooling mechanism. Fiery foods are enjoyed in hundreds of the world’s top food cultures. Indeed, people in some of the warmest climates across Planet Barbecue eat some of the spiciest food. Here, to challenge your inner fire-eater, are some of the most fiery dishes on the world’s barbecue trail. Just be sure to keep a glass of cold beer (or better...

Read more →

Project Smoke Quiz: Sauces and Marinades

Project Smoke Quiz: Sauces and Marinades

Do you know your barbecue sauces and marinades from around the United States and the world? Test your knowledge with this short quiz.

Read more →

Tips for Planked Salmon

Tips for Planked Salmon

Excerpted from Steven Raichlen's Beer-Can Chicken. Chances are, if you’ve visited the Pacific Northwest you’ve enjoyed one of the most distinctive American ways to grill fish: on a cedar or alder plank. The process satisfies and gratifies on quite a few levels. First, the wood imparts a unique flavor all its own—a spicy, wine-like flavor in the case of cedar; a woodier, smokier flavor in the case of alder. It also tends to absorb...

Read more →

A Guide: Curing Salts in Home-Smoked Meats

A Guide: Curing Salts in Home-Smoked Meats

Photo by Rob Baas. In a few weeks’ time, a big rosy pork shoulder ham will have pride of place on millions of American tables. Its very color is a harbinger of spring, the result of a preservation process using curing salt. (Without this special salt, the meat would not be pink; it would be the same shade of tan as a cooked pork chop.) The details have been lost to history. But thousands of years ago—as early as 3000 B.C.—mankind discovered salt not only delayed the spoilage of precious proteins like meat and fish, but when laced with small amounts of sodium nitrate, sodium nitrite, or potassium nitrate (saltpeter) there were even more benefits: an appealing color,...

Read more →

Your Next BBQ Secret Weapon: Coconut

Your Next BBQ Secret Weapon: Coconut

Coconut may not play a big role in your grilling, but in Asia it is a staple. Malaysians, Cambodians, and Indonesians all use coconut shell charcoal for grilling. Coconut milk goes into marinades and basting mixtures in these countries: try the Cambodian coconut grilled corn in Planet Barbecue. In Guam, freshly grated coconut is added to grilled chicken salad. So as you ascend the ladder of barbecue enlightenment, you need to know more about the amazing coconut....

Read more →