Posted by Jill Lind on May 08, 2018
The History of Barbecue Month
Humans have been cooking meat over a flame for centuries, but exactly where the idea of cooking meat over a grill came from isn’t clear. Supposedly, when Columbus discovered the Americas, he found that many of the natives were roasting meat over a wooden grill. This would give the meat a smoky flavor as it cooked.
Today, it’s such a popular method of preparing meat that there’s a whole range of barbecue cookers you can get hold of – and plenty of different styles. Small ones can often be seen in homeowner’s back gardens, where they are perfect for catering for small gatherings, whereas large ones seen in commercial settings can be so big that they can cook an entire hog!
If anywhere is most keen on a barbecue, it’s the United States. It’s not uncommon to find that barbecue is not just kept to one season – such as in the UK, where the barbecues tend to only come out during the summer months. All year round, in many parts of the USA you can get hold of deliciously, smoked and barbecued meat. And if there’s a public celebration, you can bet your bottom dollar that there’s going to be barbecues to feed the masses.
It’s time to embrace the start of summer the best way we know how with National Barbecue Month! Meat U Anywhere BBQ & Catering - Trophy Club's own Pitmaster Andy Sedino is going to be sharing his favorite tips and tricks with you all month long! #TrophyClubTX #BarbequeMonth
Tip #1: With all things, it starts with a solid foundation.
And in the Texas BBQ 4Real world, that means real wood. Andy and his team use only Gourmet Woods Seasoned Oak & Hickory for MUA’s Famous Award-Winning Smoked Brisket and all the other smoked meats. And remember, when it comes to true BBQ, it's low and slow.
People want to interchange "barbecue," "smoking" and "grilling" as the same. Not...at....all. Very different. Grilling is placing the meat directly or indirectly above the heat source of a wood or charcoal GRILL or a gas GRILL. See where the GRILL part comes in? The process usually calls for high heat to quickly sear the meats and, for some folks, to finish those meats away from the heat on a top rack of the GRILL.
Texas BBQ 4Real is when you use indirect heat from a wood firebox far away from the actual meats and the smoke from those real wood coals. Smoking means that the temperature has to be low and the process is always slow. Always.
At Meat U Anywhere BBQ, we smoke our briskets anywhere from 12-14 hours overnight. Same thing for our famous Texas-Sized Beef Ribs. That's why people keep coming back for more. If you haven't tried us, come see us at 91 Trophy Club Drive. We're open at 6 a.m. daily, starting with our breakfast tacos and we serve them all day long. Most of our smoked meats are usually ready by 10 a.m. daily.
In the coming weeks, we'll discuss meat selection, trimming, dry rubs vs. wet rubs, how to add heat and coals to your firebox without smoking out your meat, and when you know it's done without using a thermometer and letting all those wonderful juices out. And sauce on real Texas BBQ? We'll answer that question, too.
So we’ve talked about wood and we’ve talked about low and slow. Here comes the tricky part, but if done right, the jackpot: the meat, trimming, rub, gauging your temperature and cutting.
Let’s make some assumptions here, i.e., that you will be smoking brisket and are using a true smoker with a firebox away from the meat compartment, not one of those round things. Remember those are probably good for GRILLING.
On the brisket, get the best quality that you can from your grocer/butcher. and to save some time (and your fingertips), have them trim some of that excess fat (off the brisket, of course).
Get your fire going in your firebox. Do not use lighter fluid; instead use paper and/or kindling and don’t place the logs so close together that wood is choked because no oxygen. It’s like a Big Guy wearing an XL T-shirt when he really can’t admit he needs a 2XL (or, uh, maybe larger?). Point is, give it some room.
Black rolling incendiary smoke from bark on your logs is fine as it will dissipate over the entire cooking time. Our J&R Oyler ideal brisket temp is around 190-200 set and forget it. Only low ‘n slow. You know your Pit better than we do, so for instance if you know it's taking 12-14 hours—at whatever you're halfway point is never load more logs with bark.
They're too "green" and depending on your smoker and brisket size, it could cause you to "smoke it out". That’s the over-smoking/almost gaseous flavor you sometimes taste. It’s like your grill burgers on charcoal fire before you get good coals. Same standard. A clean white smoke is preferred for all other meats like ribs, chicken, turkey breast, sausage or anything you want to smoke properly.
We use the “smoke out” term to describe (and avoid) what happens when you load product prematurely on your pit and your logs have not burned down properly—only a clean white smoke for all other meats. Remember for Brisket, only bark on your wood over at least half your cooking time creates bark on your brisket. Finish it the last half of your cooking time with the bark burnt off your logs with white to reddish embers.
Rubs: some folks swear by what they hear on social media and other places about using only salt and pepper because that’s what a few “BBQ gurus” use. Forget that. It’s like using only salt & pepper to flavor a homemade chicken soup. Come to Meat U Anywhere BBQ and pick up our Brisket Blend rub. It’s a dry rub and we find that’s best if done right.
Use the Brisket Blend generously to coat the brisket on ALL sides.
Place the brisket on the smoker with the “point side” up. Close it and forget it (for a while). Don’t keep opening every 20 minutes to see how it’s doing. You don’t go on a long road trip and stop every 30 minutes to pop the hood and check the oil? If you do, sorry, can’t help you—we’re just trying to make a point about BBQ.
Here is the tricky part on refueling. You’ll need a secondary fire because you want to add beautiful embers to that meat in a few hours when your gauge is telling you the fire is low. Build it nearby in, well, you know where: that round grilling thing.
You may have to do that several times during the low and slow process depending on your pit, until your brisket is done. That will be a good 12-14 hours if you are doing it right, maybe longer, depends on your fire.
What to do while you’re waiting and doing all this? Well, remember that Big Guy we talked about earlier? He probably knows a good way to work on that Six Pack. Seriously, get some friends over, pop a top on a few with them. Solve the world’s problem’s until the Brisket is done.
When the brisket is off the smoker, here is how you know it's ready without having to "put a fork in it."
Look at the valley between the flat and point. Using your thumb, you should be able to depress without any sponge back when pushed down. All looks good? Ok, then you're ready to wrap and let rest for at least 30-45 minutes at room temp before slicing.
When you are ready to cut, the first cut should be between the same valley where the lean and moist cap meet. When sliced perpendicular to the point muscle you should be able to have a big hunk of brisket with juicy moist brisket on top and lean juicy brisket on the bottom. That's called a "competition cut".
Trim off any excess fat (without trimming the bark!) and you are ready to begin slicing against the grain. Do Texas-size slices so you can enjoy the true flavors of the meat. Sauces? True Texas BBQ does not need sauce but we have various sauces for you at Meat U Anywhere BBQ if you want.
Now, sit back, enjoy and, just in case, be ready to give the members of the Brotherhood of the BBQ an Uber ride home.
Till next time.
Memorial Day is a few days away and though we look at it as the unofficial start of the summer, let us not forget those courageous American men and women who gave their lives so that we could be free. That truly is what this holiday is about—so let us take a moment of silence in their honor.
Ok, so to celebrate Memorial Day, many people want to fire up the grill or smoker. Each will require planning and timelines based on guest counts and menu items. One pound of raw meat per 1/2 pound cooked weight in most instances will be plenty. Remember from Lesson 1, this is Grilling, Not Barbecuing, you may be invited to a Barbecue which in our Texas mindset is an event of slow Smoking meats which produces the Art & Crafted meats for a BBQ.
But we are versatile at Meat U Anywhere BBQ. In fact, on our 26-foot gooseneck flatbed trailer we have our signature Smoker and Parilla (Spanish for grill and pronounced Pah-REEH-yah).
On that unit, we can simultaneously smoke approximately 2000 pounds of meat on the J&R Oyler Smoker. Everything from brisket, beef ribs, St. Louis Cut Ribs, Turkey, Ham, Jalapeño Cheddar Sausage, German Sausage, Pork Loin, Boston Butt, Peppered Tenderloin, Prime Rib Roast, even Lemon Peppered Salmon on cedar planks.
Remember what kind of seasoned wood we use for that? Right, we only use a combination of Gourmet Woods hickory and oak.
On the other side of our covered trailer, we have our Parilla. On that, we use Texas mesquite. We do not use mesquite for the low and slow of smoking but for grilling it is the best wood source. On our Parilla, we can grill about 100 sirloin steaks or burgers at one time. And the smell? Well, if you have grilled before, you know what I’m talking about.
Ever have a tortilla warmed over mesquite coals? The char on the edges remind me of my days as a young boy with my mom and uncles out on the (Pit) at the ranch. The open fire in a dug out hole in the ground, the aroma of meat as it cooks on a makeshift grill, and that char smell on that meat and my mom’s homemade tortillas, as they do the same...well, in my mind I can smell it, and it just puts a lump in my throat every time I think about it.
With our Entertainment Trailer (complete with two 65-inch satellite-equipped TVs to catch up on those sporting events and more while grilling and smoking), we can bring the ranch to you—yes, all the food and fun for you and your family and friends to enjoy. It’s a super cool set up— the fire going, the two HD TVs, suds in your hand, your buds in chairs around you watching the action on TV, making tacos or burgers on the grill while the BBQ finishes its thing. Well, that’s what it’s all about.
Want to have us at your next party? Inquire via firstname.lastname@example.org or come see us about booking the rig for your next event. Minimums apply. Thanks for tuning in these past few weeks. Remember, if you don’t know us, come see us at Meat U Anywhere BBQ here in Trophy Club. Whatever you need, no catering function is too big or too small or too far away for us to handle.
Because like our name says, we’ll Meat U Anywhere.