Summertime is the epitome of barbeque season; with its signature smoky flavor, an array of succulent meats, veggies and sides becomes the perfect accompaniment to a laid-back summer. Barbeque has earned its place in all hearts as one of America’s most beloved cuisines.
Unlock the mysteries of barbecue with a glimpse into the world of slow smoking and wood-fired grills. You’ll make summer barbecues even more special when you bring these techniques to your own backyard BBQ!
As any great pitmaster knows, “you can’t rush a rib.” This same concept applies to larger cuts of meat or whole game. You must give it the time and care that it needs, ribs require 6-7 hours, while brisket requires 9-12 for perfect results. Barbecuing is all about low, indirect heat over longer periods of time, grilling is meant more for smaller cuts where direct flames are used quickly.
A dry rub is the foundation of any succulent barbecue and can enhance the flavor of your meat with variety of fresh herbs, spices, and salts.
Mix up your own blends with coiffeuses for great smokiness, sweet paprika for smokiness and sweetness, brown sugar for caramelization. Let this mixture penetrate into the meat overnight or at least several hours before cooking to allow the flavors to work their magic.
To infuse your meat with just the right amount of smoky flavor, you need to choose the right type of wood for smoking.
While many recipes call for hickory or mesquite, there are other options that can impart a milder, more nuanced flavor profile. Alder wood is popular for fish and poultry, while apple and cherry woods impart a fruity sweetness.
To keep your meats from drying out during the long smoking process, you need to use the right techniques to retain moisture.
Most recommend wrapping the meat with some form of fat whether it be bacon, lard, or chicken skin to keep the juices from evaporating and prevent your meat from becoming tough and chewy.
Dare to explore different wood chips flavors! Although hickory and oak are our top picks, you can also opt for apple, pecan, or cherry that will bring your meats a tantalizing aroma.
They’ll be guessing what’s behind the secret ingredient but it’s up to you whether or not they ever find out!
While you likely don’t have a pitmaster in your garage, there are some tools that can make a big difference when it comes to BBQ cooking.
A quality smoker or grill is essential for getting great barbecue results every time. Accurate temperature readings, sturdy construction, and an easy-to-clean design are all features to look for when shopping for the perfect BBQ equipment.
From low and slow ribs to brisket, pulled pork, turkey, or even fish, barbecuing is a time-honored tradition that requires true skill to master.
Whether you’re an amateur pitmaster new to the BBQ scene or a seasoned veteran, these tips will help you unlock the secrets of barbecuing with ease.
With delicious meat, simple techniques, and a little bit of patience, you’ll be well on your way to mastering the art of smoking and expanding your barbecue horizons beyond traditional grilling. Enjoy!
It’s time to bring out the grill and get cooking.