Steven Raichlen's Barbecue! Bible

Posts Tagged ‘grilling tips’

Barbecue University™

7 Steps to Grilling Nirvana

7 Steps to Grilling Nirvana

Grilling is the world’s oldest and most universal cooking method, practiced in virtually every country and culture on six continents (seven if you consider the cookouts staged by grill-obsessed scientists in Antarctica). Today’s grillers face a staggering number of decisions, from which grill and accessories to buy, to selecting the best fuel and cooking method. (There are actually five different grilling methods, each with its own unique cooking properties. And that’s before you get to specialized grilling techniques, such as plancha grilling and planking.) Of course, you need to know...

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Barbecue University™

Winning Baby Backs for Your Backyard Bash

Winning Baby Backs for Your Backyard Bash

If ribs epitomize barbecue for most Americans, the baby back epitomizes ribs. Cut from high on the hog, just next to the spine, baby backs have tender meat—more so than spareribs—abundant fat, and a convenient shape and size that makes one rack perfect for feeding two people if side dishes are served. (A rack contains 8 ribs at a minimum and 13 at a maximum.) You’ve heard the phrase “fall-off-the-bone tender.” Never, in my opinion, have five words done more harm to the notion of what constitutes good eating. Show me ribs...

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Hot Stuff

How to Smoke a Whole Pig

How to Smoke a Whole Pig

A whole pig is the apex of barbecue. As you climb the ladder of smoking enlightenment, at some point you’ll want to try one. There are too many variables (hog size, smoker design, weather, wood, and so on) to cover in a single recipe, but here are the basic guidelines. The pig: Hogs range in size from 20-pound suckling pigs to 225-pound behemoths. The first time you smoke a hog, I recommend a 50-pounder (that’s gutted weight, by the way, but with the head on). It’s small enough...

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Barbecue University™

Grill the Perfect Steak Time After Time

Grill the Perfect Steak Time After Time

When Americans are polled about their favorite foods for grilling, steak always heads the list. A slab of beef is the perfect food for the grill: Its broad surface area soaks up wood and smoke flavors, and it cooks quickly. The most common mistake made in grilling steak is overcooking it; the second most common is undercooking. And in my experience, most grill masters fear both. Because, let’s face it: A great steak can set you back more than a few bucks. If you’re insecure when grilling a pricey steak, you’re...

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Barbecue University™

Sweet Corn Steps Up to the Plate

Sweet Corn Steps Up to the Plate

A company well-known for canned and frozen vegetables recently announced America’s favorite vegetable is . . . drum roll, please . . . broccoli. Sorry, but I’m not buying it. And not just because they only polled 4,000 people. What I am buying is sweet corn—from roadside stands, the farmers’ market, and when they’re selling fresh local ears, even the supermarket. Just-picked sweet corn is in season in many states right now, making it one of the best things about August and the dog days of summer. Corn has its...

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Barbecue University™

The Cold Grate Method for Grilling Steaks

The Cold Grate Method for Grilling Steaks

If your idea of a perfect steak is crusty on the outside, grilled to a uniform rare to medium-rare, masterfully seasoned with a hint of wood smoke, and tantalizingly juicy when you cut into it, listen up. There’s a new grilling method you’ve probably never heard of. The secret? A cold grate. I was first introduced to this singular technique by David Parrish, the founder of Adrenaline Barbecue Company (aka, ABC) of Concord, North Carolina. David,...

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Barbecue University™

Ultimate Vegan Barbecue: The Secret to Grilling Tofu

Ultimate Vegan Barbecue: The Secret to Grilling Tofu

Shhh. Don’t tell anyone—especially not our hardcore carnivore friends—but I have been know to eat grilled tofu. Willingly. Even with gusto. So it’s with pleasure that I introduce fellow Workman Publishing authors Nadine Horn and Jörg Mayer, the writers behind VBQ—The Ultimate Vegan Barbecue Cookbook. The authors are not only vegetarians. They're vegan, which in some BBQ circles makes them heretics. But listen up, because they also have the chops when they fire up the...

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Barbecue University™

Performance Enhancers for Gas Grillers

Performance Enhancers for Gas Grillers

It’s understandable if gas grillers, despite their overwhelming numbers, sometimes feel left out of the barbecue discussion. Pit masters who use wood and/or charcoal seem to get all the love, and sometimes, verbally bully gas grillers. Yet, 64 percent of American grillers own gas grills. Steven and I are among them. We own gas grills for the same reasons you do. They’re convenient, easy to light, don’t get your clothes dirty, and put dinner...

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Barbecue University™

Grill to Thrill: Cavemanning (Cooking in the Embers)

Grill to Thrill: Cavemanning (Cooking in the Embers)

Some of the best moments in life occur when we’re not completely in control. Zip-lining. Falling in love. Live-fire cooking. As an industry, grilling and barbecuing seem to be moving toward the “set it and forget it” mentality, marketing grills and smokers that have more in common with kitchen appliances than the primal cooking fires that have sustained mankind for millennia. Don’t lose touch with that powerful, seductive, unpredictable, sometimes violent element....

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Barbecue University™

Use Your Christmas Tree on the Grill: Spruce-Grilled Steaks

Use Your Christmas Tree on the Grill: Spruce-Grilled Steaks

Though I am constantly thinking about various cuts of beef and new ways to cook them, the busy month of December traditionally brings Spruce-Grilled Steak to mind over and over again. Why might I focus on this recipe each year, you ask? The answer is simple: the scent of freshly cut Christmas trees brings me back to the aroma of spruce smoke and a sizzling rib eye steak. Created by my friend and the editor of my French-Canadian books, Pierre Bourdon,...

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