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

Pork

Thu Dec 29, 2016

Smoked Pork Belly Buns

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Barbecue Pork Belly Buns

A couple weeks ago I basked in a personal Texas-style pork belly achievement. I also mentioned that pork belly rarely stands out to me in smoke joints due to its lackluster flavor when compared to the super beefy beef ribs and briskets that serve as better ordering options. The real attraction to the pork belly for me is its immense amount of soft, luscious fat that gives it a texture unlike any other smoked meat. So in thinking of a way to best feature smoked pork belly's top trait while enhancing its overall flavor, I came up with these smoked belly buns, which just so happen would make for an excellent New Year's celebration treat.

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Thu Dec 22, 2016

Pulled Pork Nachos

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Pulled Pork Nachos

I've admitted in the past that I'm notoriously horrible at eating leftovers—I'll save them with best intentions, but the reality is leftovers are unappealing to me and they usually meet a fate whose wastefulness is a point of shame. There are some exceptions to my leftover aversion though, with pulled pork being one of those outliers. I love leftover pulled pork so much that I tend to smoke twice as many pork butts as I need at any given time so I can divvy up the second one into small servings and freeze for later use. One reason pulled pork breaks from leftover norms is due to its versatility—the options beyond a bun and slaw are almost limitless. While I'm sure you need no proof to deem that statement true, I present to you these pulled pork nachos as an exhibit anyways.

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Thu Dec 15, 2016

Texas-style Smoked Pork Belly

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Texas-style Pork Belly

I'm starting to get ready for my annual pilgrimage to Texas. While holidays with the in-laws serves as the official reason for the trip, I use this time of year to also try out at least a couple new (to me) barbecue joints. Luckily the barbecue scene in Houston is starting to take off—what used to be slim pickin's has bloomed into numerous really excellent options for slow smoked meats. Killen's is regarded as one of the best-in-breed in Houston, and I totally concur after ordering all the meats on my first trip there, plus a side of chicken fried steak for good measure. While there wasn't one low point in that meal, it was oddly the pork belly that left an impression on me since this cut has rarely stood up against the beef ribs and briskets at other establishments. This particular piece of belly had luscious, soft, and flavorful fat paired with the ubiquitous Texas salt and pepper bark that combined to make some fine slices of barbecue. So in anticipation of a trip filled with such delectables, I decided it's an apt time to share my attempt at some Texas-style smoked pork belly.

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Thu Aug 25, 2016

Szechuan-spiced Smoked and Fried Ribs

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Szechuan-spiced Smoked and Fried Ribs

I spend the majority of my year thinking up new or unique recipes to keep this blog at least somewhat fresh, even as I'm close to entering my tenth year of writing. This can be a bit of challenge though when I often just crave the backyard classics such as chicken, ribs, burgers, etc. So I use major grilling holidays like Memorial and Labor Day as an excuse to go with the tried and true standards, but for those unlike me, who may actually only grill or smoke on those holidays and are looking for something different that will impress, do I have a rib recipe here that's anything but usual—these Szechuan-spiced smoked and fried ribs take some American barbecue tradition and marry it with a mouth-numbing Chinese spice.

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Thu Aug 11, 2016

Mu Ping (Thai Grilled Pork Skewers)

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Mu Ping

Thai skewered meats have never really been my thing—mostly I was familiar with chicken satay, an appetizer I tended to find bland, dry, and ultimately not worth ordering when there were so many better choices on the menu. But at a recent family dinner, I cooked up my satay recipe and it was received even better than the Crying tiger steak that followed, which is a dish I consider in high regard. That had me reconsidering my stance on Thai skewers, leading me to both improve my satay recipe and trying out another meat-on-a-stick variation—mu ping.

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