Posts Tagged ‘Diva Q BBQ’

Texas Pepper Jelly – Damn Good Stuff.

I am putting this in the category of where have you been all my life.

This is a fully biased post. Be forewarned I am in love with this stuff. I will  be gushing and oohhing and awwwing all over this stuff. IT freaking rocks.

Full disclosure….

I got an email from Texas Pepper Jelly owner Craig  Sharry. I had met this gentleman a while back and he had asked me if I would like to try his products. Now they have been around a while but I just had not gotten around to ordering some.  Craig has been working on these recipes forever. Nice to see such an amazing product on the market. I have seen there logo and products on the competition circuit and I had read about them. I jumped on the opportunity. Craig sent me a nice assortment of his items.  Please note he did not in any way pay for this endorsement.  This is just from what I have tasted.

 

As it is March break I have a bit more time to play on the grills. Today has been designated wing day. 12 lbs of wings to play with.

24 designated to try these 4 items.

 

  

 

I used my Traeger Texas style with oak and hickory pellets for the wings today.

Half were lightly coated in Obie Cues Double Strength Garlic Pepper (another product  I love)

The other half was coated with Dizzy Pig Pineapple Head Rub (this stuff is the bomb) – this will be on another blog post late this week.

They were grilled for 1 hour at 275F (I prefer them crispy)

 

I then took 6 wings for each sample. I used 1/4 cup of jelly on each batch then returned them to the grill for 10 minutes to set.

Cherry Habanero

Peach Habanero

Strawberry Habanero

Apple Habanero

The colors were incredible. Love how sticky they apply to wings.

SO how did they taste?????

The Cherry by far was my favorite. I love the lingering heat on all of them and the flavors are great.  Surprisingly they are not overly sweet – certainly they have more depth to them than I expected. I have tried the peach and the apple on pork chops as well and they are delicious. The strawberry was ok- but not my favorite on wings. I think Ill have it on ice cream next as it was recommended to me.

My advice. You need to get some. Really. They are excellent. I can’t wait to try them on more items like ribs, a stuffed baked brie and more!

Thanks Craig. You made my wing day a blast. Awesome product. Keep up the great work and winning GC’s!!

Texas Pepper Jelly on Facebook 

Texas Pepper Jelly on Twitter

Texas Style Beef Ribs with Mop Sauce

 

I love Texas. Hopefully this year I will be able to go back and eat at some of the legendary BBQ joints. For now though I spend a lot of time over at Full Custom Gospel BBQ reading his reviews and experiences.  These ribs were inspired by my last trip there.

One of the challenges that I always have is finding beef ribs that have enough meat on them. It seems that outside of a few locations this is quite a daunting task.  A friend of mine Mike the owner of Big Bone BBQ came to my rescue. His restaurant serves up BBQ Beef ribs once a week at Big Bone BBQ Barrie. I got some from him and I was all set.

  

Removing the membrane was easy with a clean bar towel. Better grip than a paper towel for this tough membrane.

I also used a spoon to scrape off the large pockets of fat. Whatever you do though don’t discard the fat. Put it aside into a small saucepan and Ill get to it in a bit. After a bit of trimming I had about 2 cups of fat and beef bits.

 

 

Decided to keep the rub super simple only 4 ingredients. Granulated garlic, granulated onion, Morton’s Kosher salt & freshly cracked black pepper.

3/4 c Salt

3/4 c Pepper

1/2 cup garlic

1/2 onion

Generously rubbed (I used about half of the rub and stored the rest for future use) they headed to the grill at 225F . I used mesquite pellets for these.

  

Then I got around to making the mop. The first step was to render out some beef fat from the trimmings. This measured out to be 1/4 cup when finished.  You could also add 1/2 bottle of beer to this Mop if so desired. In addition pay attention to the sodium levels on the beef broth. Some are horrendously high. I used a reduced sodium broth and opted not to use Soy Sauce in this recipe.

Mop Ingredients

2 c beef broth

1/2 c  Worcestershire sauce

1/4 c Apple Cider vinegar

1/4 c Rendered Beef fat

1/2  bottle BV beef upper  ( approx 1.5 oz – you can also substitute Kitchen Bouquet)

4 tbsp Tiger Sauce

2 tbsp Mustard powder

2 tbsp dried onion flakes

 

 

 

 

Bring all of the Mop ingredients to a simmer. Set aside.

About 4  hours in I started Mopping every 15 minutes. I wanted to wait until the ribs had developed a very thick bark (crust).

Before Mopping:

 

 

After mopping:

 

After two additional hours mopping every 15 minutes the ribs were done.  Rested them covered tightly in foil for 15 minutes.  They were dark and crusted over and absolutely delicious. Some of the ugliest ribs I have ever made and it just didn’t matter. Paired with cornbread, cheesy pasta casserole and green beans they made an excellent meal.

   

Grilled Potato & Chorizo Salad

I love a good grilled salad. I find that any grilling component combined with greens typically keeps me interested in eating something of the vegetable variety. This recipe is a riff on a friend of mines salad. Every year we host a potluck Christmas party. My friends Colleen, George and their 3 amazing kids come when they can. Colleen makes a terrific version of this salad with boiled potatoes (skin on) and sauteed chorizo with lots of parsley, salt, pepper and EVOO. I love how the paprika comes out of the chorizo and stains the potatoes in her version. Often you will find at this said party her dish is always pushed to the very back of the buffet table. I find that this inhibits our guests from eating too much and well I am left with more leftovers. Totally Selfish. Yes I know but heck at least I am honest about my strategic buffet placement. I have always had a hard time sharing her salad. It is great eaten hot or cold as is my version. Use whatever chorizo you can find. This was made with a mild Spanish version from PC.

Grilled Potato & Chorizo Salad

Ingredients

250Gr Chorizo
1.5 lb Small Potatoes ( I used PC Brand)
3 cup Flat Parsley leaves
3/4 cup Queso Fresco

2tbsp EVOO

Vinaigrette
1/2  cup Cold Pressed Olive Oil

3 tbsp Meyer Lemon Juice

1 tbsp dijon mustard

generous amounts of salt & pepper

 

In a small glass bowl mix the ingredients for the vinaigrette and set aside.

Preheat your grill to medium high heat.

Slice small potatoes in half and place in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 8 minutes. Remove plastic wrap and toss with the 2 tbsp EVOO and a generous sprinkling of salt & Pepper.

Grill the potatoes and the chorizo for 5 – 10 minutes on each side until the potatoes have crisped on the outside.  Slice the chorizo into bite sized pieces. Toss the potatoes and the vinaigrette together.  Add the chorizo to the potatoes. Serve tossed with the parsley and top with the Queso Fresco. Add salt & pepper to taste. Yummy cold or hot.

  

  

 

 

Bacon Apple Chestnut stuffed & wrapped Pork Loin

Bacon apple chestnut stuffed pork loin

Ingredients

3lb pork loin
10 slices bacon

For the stuffing

3 c large seasoned croutons
2 ½ c diced apple
1 c reduced sodium chicken stock
1/3 c chopped parsley
¾ c chopped roasted chestnuts
6 slices bacon chopped
2 onions diced
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp dried thyme
¼ tsp kosher salt
¼ tsp black pepper

In a medium sized pan on medium level heat fry bacon until crisp. Using a slotted spoon or bamboo strainer remove the bacon and set aside.

Add chopped onion, thyme, salt, pepper and garlic to the residual bacon fat. Stir often scraping any bacon residue from the bottom of the pan. Sauté until the onion has softened. Add the diced apples and reduced sodium chicken stock. Bring to a simmer and add the croutons. Mix thoroughly cover and remove from heat.

Butterfly the pork loin using 3 cuts to open like a book. See this video for instructions -

Cover the pork loin with plastic wrap. Pound the pork with a mallet to make it a uniform thickness. Remove cover from the stuffing and fluff with fork. Add parsley to the stuffing mixture.

  

Spoon the stuffing mixture onto the pork loin leaving a 1 inch frame around all of the edges.
Starting at one end – roll the pork and stuffing together to make a tight roll.
Wrap pork with bacon lightly overlapping each layer. Secure with butchers twine.

Grill indirect at 275F until a digital thermometer reads 155F. I used oak and hickory wood pellets. Rest for 10 minutes then slice. Feeds a crowd.

  

  

 

  

BBQ Pitmasters Season 3 Audition Tapes – Check them out!!

 

Yesterday was the cutoff date for submissions of videos for BBQ Pitmasters Season 3 !

 

The competition is really heating up for a spot on the hit show. Lots of great audition tapes posted to Youtube and Vimeo. Some are new faces and some are people you may have just seen before. Good Smoking Luck to all who applied!!

BBQ Pitmasters 2012 from chris hart on Vimeo.

 

Pitmaster’s Audition from Bourbon Barrel BBQ on Vimeo.

 

Rod Gray Pitmasters Audition from Scott Jolley on Vimeo.

Tips to Starting a Competition BBQ Team

I often get asked for advice about starting a Competition BBQ Team. Its a never ending process. I learn something at every contest.

Here are a few forms I use for each and every competition

Diva Q Cook Log 2012

Diva Q Competition Checklist 2012

 

Here are some helpful tips to get you started as a competition team. Remember Having fun is a big part of it but planning it can make it a whole lot better.

 

 

Practical tips & advice for new competition BBQ teams

 

  • Practice

Keep practicing until you get completely comfortable within competition timelines. Practice until you are sick of eating bbq. When you practice at home follow the same timelines as a real competition. Set up like you would a real competition (no running back into the house).

 

  • Analyze

Ask your friends to critique your food. Ask them to rate it just like at a competition. Give them score cards. After a competition analyze your scores. Find out what the judges didn’t like. It’s not personal. It’s just competition. Learn from it.

 

  • Good Notes are worth their weight in gold

At every contest and for every test cook keep notes and take lots of pictures. In addition your expenses should be tracked as well. How much you spend on all of the items you need and what it cost to get there. Be practical. You can’t do every contest (unless you are a millionaire) so pick and choose carefully based on your income and comfort level in spending money on a hobby.

Things to take note of:

Temperature outside, and inside your grill

Humidity levels

Placement on the grill

Holding times

Rubs

Sauces

Finishing glazes

Presentation

Cooking times

Wind direction

  • Change one thing at a time.

When making changes to your flavor profiles, cooking temperature or any other competition change – only change one thing at a time. Measure the results and adjust accordingly. If you change too much you don’t know what you are measuring.

  • Clean as you go.

When you finish a turn in clean up and set up again for the next category. Don’t leave this till the last minute. A clean and de-cluttered competition table makes for an easier environment to work in.

For easier cleanup I like to use Smoky Mountain Smokers Disposable Cutting Boards- they make cleanup  lot easier and there is much less chance for cross contamination.

  • Consistency  Consistency  Consistency

Set up the same at every contest. Set your grills up, your tables up even the drink coolers in the same location. Do things on schedule at the same time. You should plan what you are doing every hour of the contest. Saves valuable time when it comes to turn in crunch time.

 

  • Have a back-up plan

If you use electrical based grills- have a generator and make sure you have gas.  Same for electrical appliances – be prepared. If the contest runs out of power how do you recover? Make a plan.

  • Be Considerate, have fun and play nice.

Introduce yourself and your team to other teams. Don’t play your music too loud. Don’t encroach on your neighbours’ competition site. Ask before entering anyone’s site or wait to be invited. Share electricity and water fairly. Mind your own kids- don’t let them run all over other people’s sites. Offer to help someone if you can. Ask general questions but don’t ask specifics i.e. – what’s in a competitor’s sauce or rub. Everyone remembers the idiots.

  • It’s a lot cheaper to party at home.

Drinking to excess at a contest really doesn’t make that much sense. It is a pretty darn expensive party. Save the liquid libations for after the last turn in time and when the packing and cleaning is done. It’s not a pretty sight to have to clean up BBQ gunk and grease when you are hung over.  Plus if you play make sure you stay the night or have a designated driver.

  • Taste trumps everything.

Taste is the #1 most important factor in scoring for KCBS. Keep that always in mind that you should be spending more time on taste than appearance- always.

  • Be Prepared

Find out what the weather is going to be like well in advance. Search the contest location on Google maps. Take note of where the water and electricity is. Find out who you should contact in case of an emergency.

Have an inventory list of all the items you use in competition. For sauces and rubs make sure you have enough for each contest.  Order regularly to ensure freshness.

  • Share with your competition neighbors.

Wherever possible try other competitor’s entries. Write down what you taste.  Make notes on their turn ins. Ask for honest feedback from them. Its good – doesn’t tell you much. Ask them to be specific.

 

  • Shorten the learning curve.

Before the contest read the Competition forums on the net. Watch you tube videos. There is lots of great information out there on box presentations, rubs, how to videos and sauces. Take a class from an experienced competitor. Take a judging class. Judge a contest. See what is being turned in. All of these will help shorten the learning curve.

  • Shut up Pay attention and listen.

Pay attention to your competitors and what they are doing. Listen to experienced bbq’ers on the competition circuit. Ask the contest reps for advice. You have two ears and one mouth. Use them in that proportion. Often the best advice received is not the advice that was solicited.

  • Edit delete and remove.

After a contest take a look at what you packed and what you actually used. Always go back and edit your notes, delete anything unnecessary and remove anything you didn’t use. Packing too many just in case items just adds up to a much longer competition clean-up. For example I love these heavy duty bus pans. They serve multiples of purposes. i use them to pack items in them. Then when I arrive at a contest I line them with bags to prep- then finally as a dish pan. Three purposes one item to pack.

  • Show me the money!

Remember that you don’t write the check. You don’t give out the scores. What you like to eat and the flavor profile you enjoy- doesn’t matter. The only people that matter are the judges. It’s their opinions and taste buds that put you on the podium.  You should taste test everything with a clean palette (no smoking or drinking anything but water) but remember just because you love 5 spice powder with a heavy hot sauce doesn’t mean the judges will.

 

 

Ted Reader – Tabasco Canada’s Newest Spokesperson !

Ted Reader has confirmed that he is Tabasco Canada’s newest Spokesperson on his facebook account:

I am happy to announce that I am officially one of Tabasco Canada’s newest spokesperson. I have always been a fan of Tabasco and all of their products and it is pretty exciting to now be part of the family. Check out Tabasco Canada and enjoy the tastyness. Cheers

 

I think this is fantastic news!! Ted comes up with wicked good grilling recipes and I really believe that unlike a lot of those celebrity spokesperson endorsements this one actually makes a lot of sense.

Ted+Tabasco= all things good, tasty & fun.

 

Tabasco made a super smart move having Ted rep them ! Great news!! I can’t wait to see the fun grilling and BBQ related recipes he is sure to create!

For more news about Ted make sure to check out

Tabasco Canada on Facebook

BBQ Pitmasters Season 3 – Its back !! Get your audition tapes in!!

One little tweet. Thats all it took for the BBQ community to get all in a kerfuffle about a new Season of BBQ Pitmasters

BBQPitmasters
To all our great diehard BBQ Pitmasters fans, good news in the works. Check bbqforum.com for an announcement. Things are moving quickly!
26 Jan Favorite Undo Retweet Reply

2 days later a post on the BBQ Forum provided a link to the information:

 

BBQ Pitmasters is back!
Season 3 begins shooting in March!!


Good Luck to everyone sending in their audition tapes!!  I had a blast doing the show in Season 2.

 

Of course the debate about BBQ on tv continues on. Well documented by one of my favorite BBQ blogs

The BBQ Brethren

 
Lots of discussions are going on here.

Chopped Carolina Style BBQ Pork with a spicy vinegar sauce

It should come as no shock that I ♥ pork. All pork. I like different types of sauces and a Carolina Vinegar sauce is definitely different.

I love the balance of the rich pork with the tang of vinegar and red pepper flakes. I love the texture of chopped pork as well.

Ingredients

2 8lb boneless pork butt

For the Rub

1/4 cup butcher grind tellicherry black pepper
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup smoked paprika
1/4 cup Morton’s kosher salt
1/8 cup Chipotle powder

For the Sauce

4 cups Apple Cider Vinegar
1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup finely ground tellicherry black pepper
1/4 cup Smoked Chipotle Tabasco Sauce
1/4 cup Morton’s kosher salt
2 tbsp Thai Red Pepper Flakes
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

Combine all rub ingredients thoroughly rub on all sides of the pork butts. Set aside in fridge for 2-3 hours.

Set your grill up for indirect cooking at 250F.
I used hickory wood pellets for this pork. Use hickory chips or chunks depending on your grill.

Place the meat on the grill and BBQ indirect until the internal temperature has reached 200F Approx 6-7 hours depending on your grill. Wrap the butt in foil lightly and set aside for 1/4 hour.

While the pork has been cooking assemble the sauce ingredients in a non reactive pan or bowl. Whisk thoroughly to incorporate the ingredients completely. Set aside covered in the fridge.

Chop or pull the butts. Make sure to incorporate any pork juices that accumulated from foiling back into the the chopped pork.

Add sauce until desired moisture and flavor is achieved. The remaining vinegar sauce keeps well in the fridge for at least a month.

Piled high on a soft hamburger bun with a crunchy coleslaw this pork is awesome. The leftovers freeze well too- Enjoy!

New Competition Class date May 24 & 25 Roc City Rib Fest


Roc City Rib Fest BBQ Class APPLICATION Form

Powered by Netfirms