Recipes – Barbecue Tricks BBQ Tips and Tricks Wed, 12 Oct 2016 01:48:32 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Authentic Jerk Chicken Rub Wed, 12 Oct 2016 01:37:11 +0000

jerk1Authentic Jamaican Jerk chicken  – how can you make it easy?
I visited at one of the south’s most authentic jerk festivals to try to get some tricks on spices that will unlock authentic Jamaican Jerk flavor.  I learned some basics:
Most often you’ll get leg quarters… With the skin scored… Jerk spice rub is typically a fiery blend of allspice, Scotch bonnet peppers and sometimes scallion, thyme,  ginger, even rum. The folks i talked to in the video were big into escovitch (pickled vegetables).
The habanero is the standard scotch bonnet substitute- they are different, but the same species. When ripe, the Scotch bonnet looks sort of like a little squashed reddish orange paper lantern.
flickr-Jason Smith

flickr-Jason Smith

After some research (tasty research) I adapted this rub and here’s how to make it at home…

Good news is the leg quarters are really affordable.. Start with that. I used half Chickens here but the breast is less forgiving than the dark meat – that’s why competition BBQ teams use thighs exclusively… I also used the remaining sauce in the small blender after coating chicken and added 4 tablespoons of cane syrup and 4 tablespoons of texas peat plus another habanero and blended to create a VERY hot but wonderful hot sauce.  Great flavor.
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Seafood Sauces Made Easy Mon, 15 Aug 2016 03:04:21 +0000

bowens-island-seafoodSeafood may not be barbecue but a good fish fry outdoors with friends comes pretty close.

Seafood and barbecue both share some room on the plate for hush puppies (grab our free Sauces and Sides book for a solid hush puppy recipe). Not sure how hush puppies ever got into the barbecue category but I think it has to do with Jamaican festival).

Also barbecue and seafood are almost always served with a few sauces.  Lately I’ve been feeling cheated at a few seafood houses for being stingy with the Tartar sauce so below (and in the video) are a few quick recipes fish1so you can make cocktail sauce and Tartar Sauce in the comfort of your own home. The video also features a visit to one of my two favorite seafood shacks of all time: Bowen’s Island.  The other is Tybee Island’s Crab Shack.  Neither has ever short changed me on Tartar sauce.
Cocktail Sauce:

  • Combine your favorite Ketchup with horseradish to taste.
  • Dash of worchestichire (optional)
  • Dash of hotsauce (optionall)

Tartar Sauce / Seafood Sauces Made Easy

Tartar Sauce / Seafood Sauces Made Easy


  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish
  • 1 tablespoon minced onion
  • 1 teaspoon yellow mustard
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste


  1. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix thoroughly.
  2. Allow mixture to set in refrigerator for at least an hour before serving.

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Grill the Perfect Beer Bratwurst Sun, 31 Jul 2016 02:42:33 +0000

Brats Done Better

Brats Done Better

By Anthony Robert

Grilled Beer Bratwurst

Everyone has their own secret perfect bratwurst recipe. Not being from Wisconsin, I can’t tell you if this recipe is perfect or not. What I can tell you is this recipe has produced for me some very delicious bratwurst. I have heard people say the Secret to great bratwurst is to simmer them in beer first (Really? Gee no kidding?), or cook them slow or make sure the fire is the right temp.

In my experience, the secret is simply patience. How long to grill bratwurst depends on how you grill them. You can throw them straight on the grill which will take about 25-30 minutes or boil the brats in beer, wine or water for about 20 minutes. After boiling, then they are grilled for 4-6 minutes. Boiling them first (also called par-poaching) in beer first improves the flavor so dramatically its almost a sin just to throw them straight on the grill. Regardless, brats take a little while to cook thoroughly. If you rush, you could easily end up with a bratwurst that is burnt on the outside and not so done on the inside.

If not handled properly, the long cooking time often burst the brat’s thin skin letting all the glorious juices out, causing a dried up brat.

Bratwurst Tradition

Due to the large German population, Wisconsin is known for their beer and bratwurst. Germans brought their bratwurst sausage recipes as they settled throughout the area in the 1800’s. Bratwurst is traditionally made from pork, although there are bratwurst that are all beef or other meats. In selecting which brand of brat to cook is a personal choice. Johnsonville is a popular national brand and is as good as any, unless you live around Wisconsin, where you can find many delicious alternatives.

Although gas grills are fine to use, bratwurst tastes the best when grilled over charcoal or wood. I have seen some fry bratwurst in a pan, but this reduces the taste to nothing more than a large breakfast sausage. Here’s how to grill perfect bratwurst

What To Grill

6 Brats

6 Good quality rolls (Semmel Rolls if you can find them)

1 whole onion

1 large Green pepper

12 ounces of beer

1 cup of water

2 tablespoons of butter

1 tablespoon salt

How To Grill It

If you have a gas grill, the sideburner is perfect for this.

Cut the onion in half and slice. Slice the green pepper into 1/4 inch wide strips. In a 2 quart saucepan, sauté the sliced onion and green pepper in 2 tablespoons of butter for three to four minutes.

Remove 1/2 of the sauteed onions and green peppers and place in a bowl covered with foil to keep warm. (You can use these on the brats later) Leave the remaining onion and peppers in the pan.

Next add 1 bottle or can of beer and 1 cup of water and bring to a low simmer. Never boil bratwurst –it will break open the skins. A low simmer is when there is steam rising off of the water and no bubbles are coming to the surface.

You can use any beer, but full flavored Mexican beers like Corona or Tecate work great.Light beer is not recommended.

Simmer the brats on low heat for 20 minutes and remove. (Discard the liquid and peppers). Take your simmered brats straight to the grill. Be careful not to break the skin. Grill on a low setting. the key here is low and slow. Brats can be cooked either directly over the fire or indirectly, where the fire is on one side of the grill and the food is grilled over the unlit portion. This allows the bratwurst to cook with little risk of burning from flare ups.

Grill the brats for 4-6 minutes total, turning often until brown. They are now ready to serve.

Use only tongs to turn. Using a fork or anything else that can poke holes in your brats will let all the good juices out and result in a dried out brat. Flare-ups from the dripping fat will cause the outside to burn as well.


Serve on good quality fresh baked rolls (not hot dog buns) and top with the onion and pepper mix that you sauteed, or with brown or deli-style mustard — or all of the above. If you like Sauerkraut on your brats, Use the fresh Sauerkraut from the refrigerated section of the supermarket. I like to use the Bavarian style with caraway seeds. Heat it in a pan with some course cracked black pepper.

Bratwurst and Beer with sauerkraut is one of my favorite grilled foods. It is fun to cook and so delicious.


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Whole Lamb BBQ On a Spit Tue, 26 Jul 2016 00:35:53 +0000

CaptureWhole lamb BBQ on a spit is a traditional way to celebrate Greek Easter. But we think it’s an impressive way to do a backyard BBQ whatever the day. So how do you spit roast a 40 pound lamb for your Holiday BBQ feast?  I turned to my friends Pete Stamatis and Nick Hatsus MD and they walk you through the process in this video.

When I asked the guys about filming their cook I actually had thought I missed the opportunity ( I remembered after my Easter holiday). However the Greek Orthodox church celebrates the holiday later- so I was actually right on time. The Orthodox Church continues to follow the Julian calendar when calculating the date of Easter and there is a thirteen-day difference between the two calendars, the Julian calendar being thirteen days behind the Gregorian.

First step is to find a whole lamb and (like a hog) in this Walmart world you might have to search around for a local butcher.   The internet is another option where I saw prices of $5.50  a pound hanging weight. Plus expect a $75 processing charge or delivery.  Expect $275 to $350 for a 40 to 50 pound lamb. You’ll also need to store it cold until you are ready to cook (something to consider).


Then secure your spit roaster.  Spitjack is the most popular vendor for roasting tools like these.  They are located in Easthampton, MA and if you can’t get to their store you can get almost everything for the same price here. Their model  CXB55 Lamb, Goat, & Whole Hog Rotisserie handles lamb and any beast up to 55 pounds or so.

Otherwise, you can rent one from a local all-purpose renter such as Taylor Rental. It’ll cost $75 to $100 for the day.

Seasoning on the lamb is done before and during the spit roast (with a baste).   After the lamb is on the spit securely the chef will coat the lamb inside and out with lemon, olive oil and a rub of oregano, salt, pepper, rosemary and parsley.  Recipe below.

Hardwood lump charcaol is preferred and once the coals are covered in a fine white ash set your lamb and spit across the cooking area. Keep the lamb approximately three feet above the hot coals.  During the cook slowly lower, incrementally, the animal closer to the coals – not lower than a foot and a half from the flames. Baste the skin of the lamb occasionally during the cook with a combination of the rub, oil and lemon juice.

For one chef online with a 37 pound lamb. Cook time was 5 hr 20 mins.—and used 55 lbs Kingsford briquettes.
The lamb in the video was 40 pounds and took over 4 hours.  The pit in the video is half closed – with a back to the spit – and that will be faster than a spit that’s open on both sides. Plus weather, type of fuel and wind will play a factor.

Hogs are traditionally cooked to a pull apart temperature of almost 200 degrees Fahrenheit.  With lamb it should be cooked to your liking however you’ll want to hit internal temp of 150 to 160 Fahrenheit (in the thickest part of the thigh. The joints will loosen dramatically when you’re close.  Use a meat thermometer to be sure and then remove from the roasting area and let it rest on the carving table for 10 to 20 minutes before carving.



Whole Lamb BBQ Spice

Whole Lamb BBQ Spice


  • 2 Tbsp. Salt,
  • 2 Tbsp. Pepper,
  • 1 Tbsp. Garlic powder
  • 4 Tbsp. Oregano
  • 1 Tbsp. Dry mint
  • Zest of one Lemon and one Orange


  1. Combine dry ingredients in a small bowl and reserve half to combine with olive oil for basting.
  2. Basil, Rosemary, and marjoram are optional (or use the fresh sprigs tied together for a flavorful basting brush)

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Loaded Hasselbacks Thu, 14 Jul 2016 12:14:40 +0000

loaded hasselbeckIf you love a good potato – this is a GREAT potato. Add just a bit of artistry, time, and care and you get the Loaded Hasselback.  All the same starchy goodness of the original Hasselback (feathered buttery crispy) with a Gooey cheese and bacon surprise. Dang it. Just realized we forgot the green onions or chives.  You should add that. The BBQ Trick is to use two wooden spoons as a slicing guide as to not separate the spud in pieces.

hassel back loaded

All in all the recipe is a lot easier than it looks. As always potatoes take time to soften so give em time to do just that BEFORE adding the cheese.

Bonus: watch the video until the end where we experiment with a Hasselback SWEET potato with bacon that was a great treat.

Loaded Hasselbacks

Loaded Hasselbacks


  • 2 hasselbacked russet potatoes
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 4 strips cooked bacon
  • Salt and pepper
  • Sliced jalapeno
  • 1 sliced cherry pepper
  • Sliced cheddar cheese


  1. Place potatoes on a baking pan to avoid dripping. Season generously with salt and pepper. Tuck pieces of bacon between every other potato slice. Coat potatoes with oil and grill (lid down to roast at 425 degrees for 25 minutes; brush with more oil. Return to the grill and roast 25 minutes more before tucking pieces of cheese and red and green pepper (alternating). Roast until the bacon is heated through and the potatoes are tender, about 10 minutes more. Grill until browned, 1 to 3 minutes. Season; brush with remaining oil. Top with green onions. Top with sour cream to taste.


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