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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The inaugural post

I am a man of many passions. Some would call me a fan of many things. A veritable fanatic if you will. One of my greatest passion is cooking outside. I love grilling/BBQing/smoking/indirecting everything from Angus Beef to Zucchini. Yes, we can grill veggies as well. From the basics of burgers and brats to the complex such as a spiral sliced stuffed pork loin.

Cooking on the grill is not just throwing a slab of meat over a some hot coals and then serving. For me the prep work can have as much an impact on the outcome as the actual cooking process. I will discuss all manner of marinades, brines and rubs that can take you to the next level in the eyes of your family, friends, and even that annoying neighbor with the huge outdoor kitchen that uses a fork to flip his steaks and expects you to enjoy the shoe leather he will be serving when those steaks are done. Or in my case show my Father in Law that a steak is best when red and not well done with holes poked all throughout during the grilling process.

I will talk about all manner of different cooking methods from high heat/short duration grilling to low heat/long duration smoking. The former may not lend itself to a lot of time around the grill enjoying your favorite beverage but it is ideal for making that perfect steak. The latter may not be good for cooking a great steak but it is ideal for enjoying your favorite beverage as well as slow cooking a pork shoulder or a few slabs of ribs.

Speaking of beverages. I am a big fan of beer and wine. I will discuss some good pairings of beers and wines to compliment the meal as well

Cooking outside is not a science. It's an art. And it will never be completely mastered by anyone. It is only limited by the imagination of the cook. I have a great imagination and have come up with some pretty interesting stuff. But I can't cover it all. So I hope that I have plenty of people who will contribute to this site with things they have created and want to share them with others.

A little about me and what I use to make my outdoor concoctions. I currently own 3 grills. Two of which are Weber Kettles. One of the two is more than 20 years old and was recently replaced by a brand new 22 inch Weber One Touch Gold that was given to me on Father's day by my 2 month old. Not sure what he was doing to earn an allowance that allowed him to afford it but I love it. He and I are posing with the grill in my profile pic. In fact he was the first thing to go on that grill. Little shrimp on the barbie so to speak.

While I do about 85% of my grilling on those two Webers, I also have a Chargriller Smokin Pro which I use for smoking large amounts of meats or for grilling say brats and burgers for a crowd. I have a rotisserie attachment for this grill as well. While I am strictly a charcoal person nearly everything I do can be done on a gas grill. Outside of maybe smoking a pork shoulder for 10 hours, a gas grill can do nearly anything a charcoal grill can do.

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