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

Sandwiches

Tue Jul 8, 2014

Merguez Sandwiches with Caramelized Onions, Manchego, and Harissa Mayonnaise

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Meatroccan Nights

I was pretty damn proud of myself that I pulled off making merguez at home. I thought I hit a high point in my exploration into Moroccan-influenced grilling with those links, but then I took those little sausages and put them between a toasted baguette, added some caramelized onions, cilantro, Manchego, and harissa mayo and created one of my favorite things I've ever grilled.

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Tue May 13, 2014

Sweet and Spicy Grilled Chicken Sandwiches

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Sweet and Spicy Chicken Sandwiches

The world seems to love skinless, boneless chicken breasts. The world is against me. Why choose fatless, flavorless breasts when you can have juicy and flavorful thighs? That's my thinking, and so it was with a little dismay that I watched Pitmaster Chris Lilly grill up some chicken breasts for lunch while Kingsford hosted me at the Decatur Riverfest a couple years ago. I found relief that brisket and ribs were on the menu too and a satisfying meal was still to be had, but Chris is quite the cook, so I figured I should at least give those chicken sandwiches a try, no matter my misgivings.

Damn, those sandwiches were hella good.

The actual chicken meat still proved my point on the lack of flavor of chicken breasts, but Chris had built such a great array of seasonings and extras that the sandwich on the whole was incredible. So I was all too pleased when the recipe was provided to me and I had a chance to make these sweet and spicy grilled chicken sandwiches at home.

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Tue Apr 22, 2014

Grill-Pressed Chorizo Tortas

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Grill-Pressed Chorizo Tortas

Longtime readers of this blog are probably already familiar with my enthusiasm for Cinco de Mayo. Tex-Mex is up there with barbecue as a favorite cuisine, so a holiday that glorifies the American bastardization (I say that with only the most delicious connotations) of Mexican food culture is something I can take to celebrating. Not that I need an excuse to fill my grill with delicious fajitas, stuffed poblanos, and tacos, but given one, I go with it and then some. I get so excited that I find myself trying out new recipes for Cinco de Mayo most of the month of April. This year it's turning out that I'm all about the torta, which mixes both my love for making sandwiches on the grill with fresh and spicy Tex-Mex flavors, exemplified in these grill-pressed chorizo tortas.

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Tue Oct 29, 2013

Meatball Parmesan Hero

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Meatball Parm

My day job has me commuting up to the Bronx Monday through Friday, where my office's close proximity to Arthur Ave finds me awash in great Italian cured meat sandwiches, pastas, and pizza to stuff me silly at lunch. For those not familiar with the area, Arthur Ave is boastingly known as "The Real Little Italy," and pretty rightfully so. While the few blocks that comprise Little Italy in Manhattan are a bona fide tourist trap, up in the Bronx, "The Ave" is lined with shops where you can find homemade sopressata hanging from the ceiling, fresh mozzarella that you can watch being pulled as you order, and cannolis only filled on demand—all done with a sense of tradition and without a drop of pretension. So it's kind of dumbfounding why so many chicken, eggplant, or meatball parmesan heroes up there fail miserably.

Too often these shops fry up the main ingredient and let it sit in a sea of tomato sauce, topped with mozzarella, nestled in a steam table all day. By the time its piled into a roll and served, any trace of crunch from the breadcrumb coating has vanished and the entire thing is a mushy, unappealing mess. There's one place that gets it right though.

Tucked into the back corner of the Arthur Avenue market is Cafe al Mercato, where each ingredient is kept separate, only assemble on order, combined in the right balance between sauce, cheese, meat, and bread. Then the entire thing is heated in the oven. This creates a sandwich with awesome flavor and texture—a parm hero that, while not the best in the world, is incredibly satisfying. Knowing that right procedure to a successful parm, I took to the task of making a great one at home—on the grill (of course).

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Tue Aug 6, 2013

Smoked Bologna

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Smoked Bologna

I'm fresh of a weekend spent away at a barbecue competition, and man does all that work and travel take a hell of a lot out of you. It obviously won't rob me of the desire to grill and smoke—it only makes that stronger—but it does leave me feeling like I need to kick back and take things easy for a week or two. So if I want to combine smoking as well as east, it doesn't come much more simple than smoked bologna.

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