The Meatwave: Barbecue & Grilling Recipes, Reviews, Tips, and Tricks

Barbecue

Thu Sep 28, 2017

Smoked Porchetta Sandwiches

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Smoked Porchetta

When I decided to make smoked porchetta, the impetus was really to have these very specific sandwiches. See, the week prior to that Meatwave I was in Vancouver for a conference and right next to the venue was a sandwich shop I had read about and always wanted to try—Meat & Bread. They're signature item is a sandwich that combines porchetta meat, crackling pork skin, and Italian salsa verde together on a toasty ciabatta roll. Of course, I had to get this while there, and while the sandwich looks and sounds seemingly simple, it was an incredible powerhouse of flavors and textures that left me craving more after finishing the last bite. So what was the best way to get more once 3000 miles away from the restaurant? Make it at home!

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Thu Sep 21, 2017

Barbecue Portobello Burgers

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Barbecue Portobello Burgers

After scoring a win with barbecue tofu—which just further went to prove that most anything can be made better with barbecue—I decided to take a chance on a repeat vegetarian success, but this time using portobello mushrooms. I've always been told, but have never quite been sold on the idea that portobellos are "meaty," which really just speaks to their heartiness more than flavor or texture in my opinion. That notion though led me to treat these mushrooms as "burgers," and one of my favorite burger topping combinations is grilled onions, cheddar, and barbecue sauce, so that was exactly how I served these up.

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Thu Aug 31, 2017

Texas Style Brisket

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Texas Brisket

I really love Texas barbecue. I know I moved to NC and should be partial to hog, but seriously, how can you beat luscious, molten beef fat that's so good that nothing more than salt and pepper is needed. As much as I love Texas barbecue, it's remained my most unattainable item to cook at home. Sure, I've had successes to varying degrees over time, but I have never really matched that trifecta of perfectly juicy, smoky, and tender beef in my backyard, and just kind of resigned myself to that fact that my home smoking setup wasn't conducive to producing true facsimiles of Texas style barbecue. That was until I smoked this particular brisket, which has changed my outlook on what I can output in my backyard and my view of myself as a pitmaster.

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Thu Aug 17, 2017

Smoked Porchetta

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Smoked Porchetta

I had it all planned out, the centerpiece of my Italian-themed Meatwave was going to be a massive pork loin that I was going to butterfly, stuff with prosciutto, sopressata, provolone, and basil, then roll close and grill. I'm sure it would have been impressive and excellent, but a slight wrench was thrown into my plans—I was given a BBQ Guru CyberQ Cloud to take for a spin, and with a lot time away from home recently, if I didn't try it out on that Meatwave weekend, I probably wouldn't get to it until at least a couple months later. I could have chosen to smoke the pork loin in order to make use of the device, but the rather fat-devoid loin isn't ripe fodder for low and slow cooking, which favors fattier cuts. Then the perfect idea came into my head—ditch the stuffed loin and do a smoked porchetta. The fat-laden pork belly required for porchetta is perfect smoking, and a porchetta would be equally worthy to serve as the centerpiece meat for the day.

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Tue Aug 15, 2017

Becoming Your Best Pitmaster with the BBQ Guru CyberQ Cloud

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CyberQ Cloud

From the time I started smoking meats, I've taken pride in tending to a fire—learning how to control its temperature, knowing when it needs more fuel, and sitting beside it with not much else to do except down some beers. To me, that was as much part of the barbecue equation as the meat itself and I kind of scoffed at those using devices and crutches to help maintain a fire. So it was with a some reservation that I took up the offer to try out the BBQ Guru's CyberQ last summer, having more interest in its networking capabilities than its core function of fire and food temperature management.

It only took one cook though for me to be totally sold—it kind of brought set-it-and-forget-it functionality to my Weber Smokey Mountain, freeing my to do so much more in the time I would have normally been fussing with the coals, including food prep, blogging, and, most importantly, uninterrupted sleep. After a few more cooks where I experienced more consistent results in my smoked meats and my fires ran at ideal temperatures for longer periods of time than I was used to, I was fully able to set aside my low tech barbecue pride and embrace the help of the Guru, so much so that when the BBQ Guru team extended another offer to try out their CyberQ Cloud model this summer, I was so excited I couldn't get it fast enough.

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