All posts filed under: BBQ

Tales of Woe ~ Love, Hate, and Fake Soy Sauce

Shortly after Soy became an ugly four – letter word in our house (okay… 3, but it’s still a terrible thing), I was convinced I could produce a fake soy sauce that would mimic the properties, taste and joy of the luscious dark brown elixir. I’m here to tell you – I can’t…. And, neither can you. There is an army of crazy people out there that believes just because it looks like soy sauce… you can trick people into thinking it actually tastes like it. I fell into their trap; mixing balsamic vinegar, garlic powder, and instant coffee – – – Roasting mushrooms and steeping them in beef broth, or this attempt,  expressing the heavenly ( garbage )mixtures into soy-free nirvana – – – Fake soy sauce has become the culinary equivalent of the  alchemist transmutation of lead into gold… it can’t be done. However… that isn’t to say that  finding a suitable medium (like chickpeas, or lentils), then submitting them to rigorous fermenting, salting, and aging (like a traditional soy or tamari) can’t …

Wine Country Chicken

With Memorial Weekend fully upon us. it’s time to pull off that expensive grill cover, check your fire supplies, and give it a good ol’ cleaning… because you know you’re going to be spending a lot of time out there flipping burgers, rolling dogs, and gettin’ experimental. To be perfectly honest – I’ve never cooked “Beer Can Chicken“. Shoving a shiny can of Pabst up the southern-most end of a bird and grilling the bejeezus out of it, just doesn’t appeal to me. I’m dubious that it adds any real moisture, and even more doubtful that an unadulterated warm beer enema is suitable flavoring for…well, anything.   That being said… I watch a lot of PBS cooking shows. You always learn something new and you don’t have to contend with a lot of flappy patter from personalities trying to be …well, charming…. they just cook. I catch episodes of Steven Raichlen’s Primal Grill periodically. I find it to be one of the best grill-specific instructionals out there. I say instructional, because he is kinda hard to listen to. Stilted, monotone …

Tahini Grilled Chicken

  Yes, yes… it does day “eating allergy free” up there in the picture. But, before you go all cat lady crazy on me – let me explain. First off, I’m not calling it “All Encompassing Allergy Free” because frankly if you go that far, you’re just living off air… that’s been scrubbed… and hasn’t been anywhere near people… or farms… We, unfortunately, have a very specific set of allergens that I have to navigate in order to provide food that is tasty, appealing, and somewhat resembles foods we used to enjoy. And instead of dredging all that back up here.. just go back to The Long, Slow Train to Crazytown and catch up. The thing is.. we like peanut satays. Scratch that – we love anything with peanuts. But like the train ride tells you, it’s just another of the things I’ve had to scour out of our diet. Among the substitutions I’ve been testing in our diet, I’ve found that Jane has absolutely no issue with sesame… in any form. Lately, she’s even …

July 4th Eats – Brunswick Stew

Why yes, you’re absolutely correct, I did do the Brunswick Stew back in the beginning of Plate Fodder. But like a lot of things – everything changes… Castleberry’s is out of business Hunt’s changed the recipe on the Hickory BBQ Sauce and added an ungodly amount of sugar. And the same really goes for any bottled ketchup these days. So… we’ve made some adjustments to the old standby recipe in order to give you the same slap yo’ granny Brunswick Stew this is supposed to be. Okay, the Stew – My family loves Brunswick Stew. To me, the mark of a great BBQ place is the quality of their Brunswick Stew. I’ll try every BBQ joint in a 50-mile radius to see if anyone has a good one. Usually, there aren’t many winners. It is either too gloppy, too saucy, too bland, too..just bad… My mom has this recipe for Brunswick Stew. I don’t know where it came from, we’ve had it forever. We make it for funerals, family get-togethers, church socials, family dinners – you get …

Peach Butter Bingo #3 – Tie One On

Bourbon ~ Peach Butter BBQ Sauce Regionally speaking, I’m not a sweet BBQ sauce kind of guy. I like ’em hot and tart. Nothing really beats a good North Carolina vinegar sauce… or that insanely mustard-y sauce from Carey Hilliard’s in Savannah (are they even open anymore? …  I really need to get down there, see what’s shakin’ in the Port City… and poke around in The Church Cook’s Kitchen while I’m at it.) So, needless to say, this sauce really isn’t my cup of tea…so to speak… but since pork, bourbon and peaches really do a number on the taste buds, I just couldn’t resist trying the peach butter in a sweet and spicy sauce. If you’re a fan of Kansas City Style sauces – this’ll be right up your alley. It’s been raining off and on the past two days here at Turtle Creek. Since I’m not a fan of grilling in the rain, I wanted to cut down on the cooking time and amp up the tenderizing since these ribs wouldn’t be slow cooking …

One From Column A – Char Siu

Brian (my partner in crime for a great many years) and I lived for Saturdays. Saturday was the day the BBQ Place (I know, a strange name for a Chinese restaurant) at Asian Square on Buford Hwy pumped out non stop Char Siu – and we stuffed ourselves in plate upon plate of  mahogany lacquered, perfectly seasoned medallions. Char Siu – or Chinese BBQ Pork used to be a staple at every Chinese restaurant. You could order it fresh off the rotary thingy, sliced and served with a heap of rice; find it diced and scattered like little jewels throughout the pork fried rice; used in twice cooked pork, and minced – mixed with hoisin sauce and stuffed in bbq buns. Times were it was a staple at every Mr. Won’s, House of Eng, Mama Wu, Ho Ho, Cantonese Palace (insert your favorite Chinese Restaurant here). But those are sad days gone by. Like a great many things in equally diverse cultures, time – money – labor have taken their toll, and unless your particular Chinese haunt does their own slowly turning, crisperizing Peking Duck, …

Lammykins and the Big Pit of Fire

There’s a woman at the top of the hill that sells baby “pet” goats and sheep. It’s true, the crudely hand painted sign attests to it. “PET BABY GOATS AND SHEEP FOR SALE” Although I am inclined to believe that no one actually buys them as “pets“. The stock of hooved beasts rotates in and out, the community of blaying residents swells the hillside to bursting, then one by one they vanish into the night. If anyone within a drive-able distance were actually stocking their yards with hairy lawn ornaments, I’d have seen them. There aren’t any. What there is… is a never-ending caravan of umm…ethnic men in trucks picking up a couple “pets” for a thrilling weekend of fire, beer and barbecue. Yes my friends, she is providing a food source. I, myself, have been tempted to liberate a couple of her tasty, furry pets for my own entertainment, but thankfully… our neighborhood covenant doesn’t allow livestock – pet or otherwise… and, I’m not all that sure I could butcher a fluffy lamb… and besides, well.. goat eyes just really creep me out. …