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

Barbecue

Thu May 26, 2016

Sweet and Sticky Smoked and Fried Hoisin-glazed Ribs

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Smoked and Fried Hoisin-glazed Ribs

When it comes to barbecuing, ribs are by far my go-to item. This certainly shows with ribs racking up sixteen unique recipes so far, while other common slow smoked items like pork butts or briskets only have a couple each. This has certainly bred a consistancy in my rib production, but at the same time, also a monotony. In thinking of ways to continue to build pork rib excellence and break repetition at the same time, I though why not try something completely new—smoke, and then fry my ribs. Turns out that was a pretty sweet idea, and these sweet and sticky hoisin-glazed ribs are just one of two prime examples so far.

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Tue May 24, 2016

Firing Up with the BBQ Guru's CyberQ, Plus Giveaway

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BBQ Guru CyberQ

Prior to firing up my first grill, I had little interest in cooking and eating—my diet consisted of mainly fast food, frozen pizzas, Hot Pockets, and TGIFridays appetizers. After lighting up that fateful first batch of coals though, I felt an immediate connection to my food I hadn't before. I attribute this to cooking at a fundamental level where I'm not only in control of my food, but also the heat source, which requires an extra level of attention and understanding. To me, this is what cooking needed to feel like for it to click, and because of this, I've pretty much shunned technology that aids in the process at all, save for a few digital thermometers that keep me clued into what's happening with my fire and meats.

Of course, that's just a personal preference, and once I entered the barbecue competition circuits, most all teams around me used some sort of digital device to maintain proper temperatures in their pits. The BBQ Guru—a small computer that monitors the fire's temperature and adjusts it using a fan—seemed to be the most popular choice in this arena. While I watched many teams use this device to set-it-and-forget-it, I always kept an eagle eye on my smoker and felt as if I had a connection to what I was cooking that others were missing out on.

With that hard headiness also came sleepless nights, increased anxiety, and additional work. So after grilling and smoking now for thirteen years without extra assistance, I decided it was time to see what all the fuss was about and took up an offer to try out and review the BBQ Guru's CyberQ.

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Tue Jan 5, 2016

Barbecue Scotch Eggs

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Barbecue Scotch Eggs

The New Year has brought with it a spirit to try new things. While the nature of the blog requires me to cook different recipes constantly, at this point they're tending to become mostly variations on a theme. So it was actually not the easiest thing to come up with something completely different, but I finally found it in these barbecued scotch eggs—a recipe that ended up being equally challenging and rewarding.

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Tue Dec 22, 2015

Barbecue Ribs with South Carolina Mustard Sauce

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South Carolina Mustard Ribs

Part of my holiday planning is mapping out what I'm going to bring to three different potlucks that happen annually between Christmas in New Years. Being at my in-laws in Texas without a smoker has forced my hand to look towards braised meats and baked pastas in the past, but I've helped remedy that situation by somewhat-selfishly gifting my brother-in-law with a kamado cooker as a housewarming gift, which is now ready for use. While I've loved all the chilis, barbacoas, and lasagnas I've made, I'm finally opened to explore my true calling and great pot luck fare—barbecue. In testing the waters for what might make a suitable dish, I tried out a few racks of pork ribs finished with a golden South Carolina-style mustard sauce.

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Tue Sep 1, 2015

Apricot-Glazed Barbecue Ribs

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Apricot-glazed Ribs

Ever since taking up competition barbecue, I've become obsessed with finding a way to make the most consistently perfect slow-smoked pork ribs that can elicit awards from faceless judges. In the process, my rib method has grown to include all sorts of meticulous steps, like wrapping the ribs in foil at just the right time, adding a braising liquid to get them perfectly tender, and monitoring the temperature more closely than doctors keeping tabs on patient's vitals in the ICU.

The resulting competition ribs have earned me a few trophies, but they're honestly not the kind I love most. You see, I'd rather use a simpler method and push the flavor with additional spices and heat, but that can be risky in a competition setting, since I don't want to take that chance on judges with sensitive palates.

So at the beginning of last summer, I decided it was time to get back to my barbecue roots and smoke up some racks of ribs using a less intensive method, instead focusing on hitting those bolder flavors that can make barbecue so incredible. Of course, going with my standard sauce and rub would have been a little too easy on me, so I came up with a new apricot barbecue sauce and complementary rub to make these glistening beauties extra special.

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