I want to take a moment to post my thoughts on BBQ Pitmasters before our episode airs. I have read a lot of negative comments on various BBQ boards twitter and facebook. We knew there was a complete format change this year prior to going in. It was public knowledge so no secret about that. In fact I looked forward to the opportunity to BBQ something other than the typical 4 meats.
I really do believe a pitmaster should be able to handle more than just those 4 meats ribs chicken pork and brisket. I think a pitmaster should handle the various obstacles thrown at them. No where did it say this was a typical MIM, KCBS, PNWBA, FBA etc contest. Its just bbq on tv. So maybe call it BBQ and grilling entertainment>??? People need to lighten up a bit. Please note I also have no problem any more using the term BBQ to describe making hot dogs on a grill or even something like grilling asparagus. I used to cringe at it but over time I realized there were so many ppl using the term BBQ to describe something else that I figured it didn’t matter to me as long as people were getting together enjoying great food in the company of their loved ones and friends. For those of you that think this show was scripted let me tell you for sure 100% it wasn’t. However I will tell you it was the biggest challenge of my bbq career to date and the hardest competition I have ever endured. It took real stamina, knowledge and quick thinking on the parts of all of the teams that went and did this show. Win or lose every single team that appears should be commended for taking on this competition.
We were in California in 110F or higher temps for the entire time. We spent the vast majority of our times standing up racing around or generally plotting our next move. Yes there were times when we did some BS smack talking (and seriously it was hard to keep a straight face on it LOL) but overall when you are BBQing among friends it really is just a bunch of posturing and BS I love the guys we went up against.
What a fun time we all had Big Poppas Smokers, Big Mistas BBQ and the legendary Johnny Trigg. I absolutely 100% enjoyed myself with our team of my husband and my BBQ BFF Angie. I would do it again in a heartbeat. We had a lot of giggle times and a lot of stressful times but overall I am really happy with how it all went down.
Hope you watch the show. Just take it for what it is a whole lot of fun and entertainment.
Well I am really behind in my blog posts but I thought I should share a few pictures and results from the Canadian National BBQ Championships in Whistler BC as well as my trip overall.
I flew out earlier this summer to spend some time with my BBQ BFF Angie Quaale teach at her incredible gourmet food store Well Seasoned and while I was there compete.
It was a culinary indulgent trip for sure. BC is where my Mom was born and I have not been since I was just a few months old. The first thing I said after getting off the plane was holy crap those mountains are huge.
*Please note this picture was taken by Ralph Maughan
You see no picture does them justice to get their magnitude and their impressive size and beauty. Gorgeous breathtaking and majestic don’t seem t do them any justice as an adequate description.
Also I have to state the people of BC are seriously laid back. They take their relaxation very seriously. Shortly after getting off the plane we headed to Granville Island. Now this was an incredible place to spend the day just hanging out eating some of their delicious local fare and well of course having a few cocktails.
Wandering around the streets of Vancouver afterwards with my hosts Dennis and Angie was a whole lot of fun. There is so much to look at and see taste and experience that it is a bit of sensory overload.
After spending the day being tourists we proceeded to the beach at English Bay for the evening to watch one of the most incredible fireworks displays at the Symphony of Fire from Team Spain. We had a very long extended and relaxing meal with a whole lot of cocktails.
Here is part one of some video from the event.
It was an incredible way to end my very first day in BC.
The next day was all about relaxing kicking back and just getting caught up.
To top it off we went to a comedy club contest. This was held in a not so savory part of the city and was an adventure in itself. Some of the comedy was so horrible it was funny. The highlight was a friend of Angies – Art Factora who was funny, truly funny and kept us laughing long after he came off stage. they also served PBR a favorite beer of mine.
I also held a couple of recreational BBQ classes while I was there. I taught a class on ribs and also a class on BBQ desserts. Well Seasoned has had chefs from across the world come and teach at the store everyone from top TV Chefs to local favorites. Their course calendar is packed to the hilt with culinary excellence and opportunities to learn.
On another day we headed out to lunch with Anthony Sedlak famed Chef and star of the MAIN on the Food Network. Funny guy who likes to stand on his head. A lot. He was great company to have lunch with and I am really looking forward to seeing his various projects come to fruition. We tried a new burger place Romer’s Burger Bar and by the descriptions on the menu I was really looking forward to my burger. Sadly the burgers lacked in taste texture and overall appearance but the company I had more than made up for the poor meal.
One of the all time best meals I actually had during my stay was in Angies and Dennis’ backyard. we had a truly divinly decadently delicious halibut that Angie crusted with Salt & Vinegar potato chips. It was incredible. Dennis had caught the halibut himself. Paired with some fresh veggies, salads and a couple of bottles of wine this was by far my favorite meal from the entire vacation.
We also did girly things like get pedicure and one other thing I never ever thought I would do … we got tattoos. Yup. Tattoos. You see I have been calling Angie and I and a few other ladies of BBQ sisters in Smoke. Angie one day called me a said in her ever so exuberant voice you know we should get tattoos when you come to BC….. and so we did. She got hers on her leg and I got mine on my wrist. I won’t kid you it hurt like heck at first but the pain went away and I am so happy I did it. There are a few other ladies now that have plans to get the same tattoo as well and thats going to be pretty awesome.
We had to prep and get supplies for the competition in Whistler so we ended up doing some shopping and of course did a little trip to Washington as well. One of the great things about BC is the availability of incredible produce and meats everywhere you go.
I have to go into more detail about one of the places at the Granville market.
Oh My goodness this place is an amazing culinary feast. We went back to Granville to stock up on munchies for Whistler. This is where I fell in love with an incredible charcuterie place called Oyama Sausage Company.
They make everything themselves. Pate’s, hams sausages terrines salamis cured smoked meats you name it they have it and its all delicious. I want to go back and try every single thing they make. Everything.
Kevin Roberts, the new host of TLC BBQ Pitmasters Season 2 was on The Early show this morning talking hot dogs. Yes. Hot dogs. It was probably a much safer topic than his previous appearance on the Today show with some rib cooking options. I liked his suggestion of a pickle bar versus chips. It is a much healthier idea for sure! He is still taking shots but this time was Franks Red Hot! The Food Dude certainly is amusing with Chicago Style, Texas style and many more pimping out the hot dogs!!
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Figuring out what you need ahead of time and what tips and tricks you can use are a great time saver. Setting up your site is an important part of the whole process. Each of these sites has helped me a lot.
Here are some great tips and checklists to make your life easier:
Excellent resource for tips on all things competition and backyard BBQ.
*Excellent resource for competition and backyard BBQ.
Sometimes you just wish you could be in two places at once………….
If I wasn’t already booked for a competition I would be going to this next weekend. Rob “Rub” Bagby is a top notch competitor and an all around really great guy with a proven track record for getting terrific results!!
I have heard many extol the virtues of this class after taking it. I sure wish I could have made it down for his excellent BBQ Cooking Class.
Today’s announcement from TLC BBQ Pitmasters here are the judges for Season #2 premiering August 12 at 10pmEST/9c
Myron Mixon from Jack’s Old South and BBQ Pitmaster from Season #1
Superbowl Champ & BBQ Enthusiast
Celebrity Chef James Beard award winning author of Back to the Table and Kitchen Life