Posts Tagged ‘Well Seasoned’

Wow its been a busy few weeks ! BBQ from BC to Buffalo and then back to Canada !!

I must sincerely apologize for the delay in posting I have been busier than a bee. We have been travelling from BC to Buffalo competing!

In Langley BC I had the distinct pleasure of teaching once again at Well Seasoned. It was a terrific set of days we had a sold out classes for Ribs and received a lot of positive feedback from the classes.

 

Then we headed up to the gloriously beautiful Whistler BC to compete at the Canadian National BBQ Championships!!  This is the most gorgeous location to have a BBQ competition. At the base of the mountains beautiful wisps of smoke plume upwards . It is a sight to behold for sure. Our site was once again shared with the teams from Well Seasoned with pitmaster Angie Quaale and David Gassaway, Praire Smoke & Spice with pitmaster Rob Reinhardt and Jaci Reinhardt.  We all get along really well and there was a lot of sharing involved with cooking techniques and recipes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Congratulations to Wine Country Q for their GC and to the Canadian Team Well Seasoned RGC and the ticket to the Jack !!!! We received 7th in burger and 6th in King of the Q,  1st place pork and the rest lets just forget about it till next year. Overall we came in 13th out of 43 teams. It was not our best results for sure. They really didn’t like our food other than our pork this year. Oh well. We still had a blast!

Angie and David. Wow were they ever surprised awesome to see!!

After flying back from BC we had just 36 hours to prep and pack for the Taste of Country Nationals in Buffalo BC. Talk about some quick packing!!

This new event combines great country music family friendly events, BBQ vending and of course a BBQ competition. Moe Cason from Ponderosa BBQ and I were asked to go on the local TV station ABC WKBW News 7 in Buffalo and do a short segment on the event!!

The event was a blast to do and the crowds were enormous. The vendor lines never stopped the entire time we were there and there were hundreds of people in the Peoples Choice tasting lines as well. For this contest we were joined by a Ninja. No kidding. A Pork Ninja named Jamie. :-) We were really appreciate of his help all weekend for sure and we could not have done the sampling without him.


We were lucky enough to come home with some hardware!! 1st place pork 3rd Chicken 7th ribs 13th brisket for 5th overall. Plus for the first time ever we won 1st place people’s choice. that was a big thrill for us. We usually don’t participate in peoples choice. This one was a blind peoples choice for pork. IT was a thrill for sure and we will be back next year.

Then right after awards we raced back to Canada for a VIP catering event for some lovely folks.

Catering table as we were setting up.

Good times but we are now taking a well deserved long overdue …weekend off. Catch you next week!!

 

Catching up my trip to BC

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.

We also headed out for some great food. super yummy.

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.

Christmas Eve prep continues….

Day 23 – 25 Days of Christmas BBQ Blogging..

ABT’s, Puff Pastry Wrapped Brie with smoked garlic and walnut wine preserves, Cevapacici wrapped eggs

More prep today so there will be no finished products till everything goes on the BBQ’s tomorrow afternoon.

The first item I started out with today are the ABT’s (Atomic buffalo turds) which my FIL and husband both love dearly. I sure like them as well.

I love making ABTs They are fun little jalapeno packages of goodness. I rarely make the sme kind twice. These just get better and better.

I started out with 23 whole jalapenos that I split, cleaned the seeds out and washed. I use a tomato corer for this. Its a great tool for this task.




Then I mixed up 2 packages of cream cheese, some applewood smoked cheddar that I received in my Traeger gift basket this year, a bit of my own BBQ rub, spring onions and some minced garlic – thats about it.


Piped the mixture into the jalapenos. (* if your mixture is too stiff to pipe put the piping bag in microwave for 30 seconds) added a small slice of kolbasa to the tops of each.


Wrapped each with bacon. They are ready for the grill tomorrow.

The next item I worked on is a puff pastry wrapped brie. This is where store bought items really come in handy.

I had received a wonderful package from my sister in Smoke Angie Quaale owner of Well Seasoned a gorgeous gourmet food store in Langley BC. Angie sees some of the best food items there are and she sent me some of her favorites from this year. In amongst these food gems was a lovely jar of turkish fig and walnut wine preserves. Now I love figs and brie so this is a natural fit for me. In addition I had smoked some garlic the other day. I really don’t have the time to make my own puff pastry so PC brand works for me.

The rest is just a matter of assembly. This is not hard at all and best of all it can all be done the day ahead before it hits the grill.



Roll out the puff pastry


I scraped the top of the brie with a steak knife. I then spooned on some of the delicious fig and walnut wine preserves.


Pile on the individual cloves of smoked garlic


Wrapped all up in the puff pastry. I also gave it an egg wash so it will be shiny coming out of the grill or oven. Lastly I sprinkled on some smoked salt.


Off into the fridge it goes till tomorrow.

The last item I prepped today was something I haven’t tried before with this type of sausage.

Usully we have cevapcici with a roasted red pepper dip (Ajvar) for Christmas eve and as a snack on Christmas day. I fell in love with these shortly after marrying my husband who is Macedonian. These are a staple in his parents house- caseless sausages made of pork and beef. Unfortunately I forgot to pick up another case from D&S Meats in ajax Ontario. I did not have enough time to make my own.

So what to do?? I only had a few left in freezer. 24 to be exact. Not nearly enough for both Christmas and Christmas eve. I love scotch eggs and I hope this turns out to be a fantastic BBQ’ed version of them.

I started with 8 boiled eggs and made a patty out of the sausage. I did this all on plastic wrap to make it easier to assemble.



Then for color and flavour contrast I laid down pieces of roasted red peppers and some spring onions.


Next up you just have to add cheese. I picked an aged cheddar that was in the fridge. ( I would have used just about any type of hard cheese.)




Then here is where the plastic wrap comes in handy. I used it to help lift up the sides and then formed it into a ball.


I just repeated that over and over till all 8 were covered then sprinkled some House of Q BBQ rub on them.


I hope they work out well so I can slice them into wedges. Ill post the pics tomorrow. I am off to my favorite place to shop-my butchers Hovey’s Gourmet Meats to pick up my turkeys and some other tidbits of yummy goodness.

Quekies – BBQ Cookies….. and Pig Candy from Big Butz BBQ Sauce

Day 12-25 Days of BBQ blogging.

Came across an interesting topic on twitter the other day. BBQ Cookies.

Now my dear BBQ buddy Angie Quaale from Well Seasoned has been making Bacon Chocolate Chip Cookies for some time and getting rave reviews for them. I don’t doubt they taste fantastic since she is such a great BBQ’er and chef in general. Bacon in any recipe will get my attention.

However I have never come across a recipe that calls for BBQ sauce and pig candy in cookies…


This lead me to contacting Tom from Big Butz BBQ Sauce for the recipe and to find out the inspiration for them comes from. Gourmet Girl Magazine is one of my favorite twitter (@TheGourmetGirl) people outside of the BBQ world.


Straight from Tom here is his own words and recipes…
Big Butz Quekies
BBQ Sauce infused Shortbread with Pig Candy Crumbles Cookies.

Recently I heard about this thing called a Virtual Holiday Cookie Crawl that Gourmet Girl Magazine was doing . They said they were looking for people to post recipes of their favorite or unusual cookie recipes that they had come up with for other people to try and enjoy. Now, I am a BBQ Sauce maker, not a baker, so this wouldn’t seem like something for me but, then I got to thinking, “Who says you can’t make a BBQ Sauce flavored cookie?” After all, the way I looked at it, cookies are sweet, BBQ Sauce is sweet (especially our Cranberry flavored sauce), so it can’t be impossible. After some research and thinking about the different flavors of cookies I’ve had over the years, I began to do some tinkering. Until finally I came up with Big Butz Quekies! At first glance these may sound like the strangest things ever but, just one bite and you’ll be amazed. This is the entry that I came up with for Gourmet Girl Magazine’s Virtual Holiday Cookie Crawl

Cookie Dough Mix
(Makes about 2 dozen)
1 ¼ cup All Purpose Flour
½ cup White Cornmeal
¼ cup Cornstarch
15 tbsp. Stick Butter
½ cup Confectioners Sugar
½ tsp. Salt
3 tbsp. BBQ Sauce (Big Butz BBQ Sauce preferred)
4 Strips Pig Candy (Recipe to follow)

First mix together the flour, cornmeal, cornstarch, and salt in a large mixing bowl. You can use a sifter to do this, I just use a fork to stir it around for a few minutes until there are no lumps and everything appears to be blended together evenly. In a separate bowl, start by creaming the butter (for easy figuring, it’s one tablespoon shy of 2 sticks of butter). Once the butter is smooth, stir in the sugar. (It is best to leave your butter out for it to soften but, if you must, you can microwave it at 10 second intervals. Do not let it melt!) Add the BBQ Sauce to the butter and sugar mixture and stir until completely blended in. Take your butter mixture and add it to the dry mixture by cutting it in.

Continue stirring until the mixture takes on a dough like quality. Chop up the pig candy strips into bits and stir them into the dough. Once everything has been thoroughly mixed roll it out of the bowl onto some plastic wrap. Seal up the dough in the wrap, flattening it into a large puck shape in the process. Place the wrapped up dough in the fridge for an hour all the way up to overnight if you need to. When ready to bake, preheat your oven to 375° and take dough out of the fridge. Knead the dough and roll it out into a log shape that is about a 1 ½ inches in diameter. Cut the log in half with a knife and place half back in the fridge.

Start slicing pieces about ½ inch thick or divide over and over again until you get 12 even pieces. During the slicing process you may have to continue to rotate the log to keep the pieces as round as possible. Lay pieces out flat on cookie sheet. There is no need for greasing or spraying oil on the sheet. Place sheet in oven and cook for 13-15 minutes. Cookies will be brown around bottom edges when you take them out but the rest of the whole cookies should not be. While cookies are baking, lay out a sheet of wax paper.

When cookies are done, use a flipper and immediately remove them from the sheet, and place them on the wax paper to cool. Repeat the same process for the second log. Cookies will come out soft but will firm up as the cool and will really stiffen up if placed in the fridge inside a sealed bag. For serving, I recommend providing some BBQ Sauce for dipping the cookies into to really bring out the BBQ flavors. This recipe works with any of our BBQ Sauce and can bring a whole new dimension when using our Hot flavors. For those who are looking for the ultimate in making these cookies, one could attempt to use a Big Green Egg or Bubba Ho Keg type cooker to do it and would truly have made BBQ cookies.


Pig Candy
(Makes enough for 2 batches of Big Butz Quekies.)

1 package Thick Cut Bacon
1 cup Brown Sugar
¼ cup Chile Powder
¼ cup Kosher Salt (or less)

Quite a few people already have their own recipe for Pig Candy. This is a quick and easy one that I came up with and can be made in the oven. Preheat your oven to 375°. Mix sugar, chile powder, and salt together in a bowl. Lay bacon out on a Jelly Roll Pan or standard backing sheet (there is going to be plenty of grease). Coat bacon evenly with mixture and place pan in the oven. Let cook for approximately 20 minutes or until bacon appears to be cooked and sugar mixture has caramelized on the bacon. Remove bacon from the oven and let cool for a few minutes. After bacon, or now Pig Candy, has cooled for a few minutes, place the strips on another baking sheet lined with paper towels to soak up the grease. You might have to do this a second time to get all the extra grease off. Once fully cooled, your Pig Candy is ready to be used in your Quekies! Or, you can always just eat it by itself.



Thanks very much to Tom for sharing his recipes.

Mulled Jack Daniels One of my favorite Christmas time libations….

Its time to repost this favorite of mine…

Today is in honor of the Jack. I have had the pleasure of competing there once (2008 we ended up being the Top International Team woot!) and we went earlier this year to support some of our near and dear BBQ friends. Its been said before and Ill say it here again the Jack Daniels Invitational BBQ competition is something incredibly special. I hope to have the privilege of going and competing there again someday.

A dear BBQ friend of mine and Sister in Smoke Angie Quaale from Completely Q-less came up with this great recipe. Her store in BC – Well Seasoned is insanely busy throughout the year but even more so right now. If you are ever in Langley, BC head on over you won’t be disappointed.

This is a great adult beverage to keep toasty and warm with on cold winter nights. I’ll be making a batch for Christmas Eve this year. I also plan on making this at next years BBQ Competitions. I think it will be a great midnight sippin drink.

Its one of those general recipes that just works. This is from Angies email when I asked her for it.

No real recipe…

It is really good quality apple juice (the not from concentrate in the refrigerated section is best – I think it is Tropicana) heated on the stove in a large pot with whole star anise, candied ginger, cinnamon sticks, dried figs, all spice berries, cloves, dried cranberries. Heat until you have as much flavour out of the spices/fruit as you want….if you leave it too long it will start to get bitter – strain and transfer to a crock pot. Add JD about 1-750 ml. Bottle for 6 litres of juice but you can make it your own strength preference. Let it sit in the crock pot on low to keep warm for your guests to enjoy. You can add a bit of honey if you like but I find the apple juice sweet enough.

Thanks Angie!

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