My favorite charcoal Basques Charcoal and a sponsor of our BBQ team Diva Q will be available at Goemans this year. They will have the charcoal in their stores next week!!!

Goemans has 5 locations in Ontario:

  • Kitchener
  • London
  • Mississauga
  • St. Catharines
  • Stoney Creek

The difference between Basques Hardwood Charcoal and the others

What essentially differs us from the competition is our hardwood charcoal. Our lump charcoal is made only with logs which have been selected cuts grown under regulated forest regeneration programs. In fact, you will not find any construction or destruction residue in our bags. That means no nails, pieces of metal or again charcoal which may look like a two by four.

Cooking on Basques Hardwood Charcoal

Basques charcoal: 100% natural hardwood * sugar Maple
Ingredients: 100% natural charcoal for a real wood-grilled flavour


Just an FYI we have announced two classes for 2010 with more dates being announced in the future. Please see our Classes tab for more information. Please note all of our past classes have sold out continuously so sign up soon.


When I was travelling through the US last week I came across two items not normally seen in my everyday shopping and 0f course I had to buy them. Why? because they were bacon inspired. Anything with Bacon is pretty much good in my books so these could not be passed up.

First up bacon Gumballs. Because who doesn’t like a mouthful of bacon. ?? 32 pieces of bacon flavored gum. !!!

Second bacon Gummy strips. <<<<MMM I love gummy candies.  These are not good gummy candy. I’ll stick with the gummy worms. Sadly no bacon flavor just the visual effect of eating a slice of bacon. Not a good strawberry taste either. What cracked me up about this was the very stern instructions on the back:  Do Not attempt to fry or microwave.  WTflip.


An interesting read from DR’  s  BBQ  his manifesto on barbecue…

Welcome to my barbecue manifesto. I decided to sit down and type this while i’m on fire. Why you ask? I have heard the word barbecue and crockpot used in the same sentence twice in two days. After this travesty to the food world I must sit down (with beer in hand of course) and write my thoughts on this subject.   Read More HERE


Day 23- 25 Days of Christmas BBQ Blogging……


I received in the mail today a product sample of Frogmats.

I opened the package to find two very lightweight mesh sheets that claim to be non stick and perfect for delicate items for the BBQ or grill.

From their website the description:

We have all experienced the frustration of grilling delicate foods on the Bar B Que. The food immediately sticks to the grates and tears or crumbles when you try to turn it. The food falls through the openings in the grate and you have one big mess.

Frogmats solve this problem. Food will not stick to the Frogmats and is easy to turn without crumbing.

Frogmats are great for preparing fish and Ka Bobs. Fish will lift off the Frogmats with ease as does the vegetables in Ka Bobs. The open matrix of the Frogmats will eliminate to a large degree any food from falling through the grates.

The Frogmats will not pick up odors from fish,. therefore each time it is used there will be no left over taste.

Frogmats are designed to perform in indirect cooking methods. Do not expose the Frogmats to direct flame.

Our Frogmats are FDA compliant for direct food contact.

Easy to clean with a warm water spray by the outdoor hose or in the kitchen with sink sprayer. The Frogmats will last for years.

Prepare picture perfect fish dinners like the pros with Frogmats

Frogmats are USDA approved for food processing and handling, and are FDA compliant (21 CFR177.1550). In addition, the fabrics can operate in temperatures from -400°F (-240°C) under static conditions and -100°F (-73°C) under dynamic conditions up to 550°F (288°C).

The timing for me worked well as I had a new experimental BBQ item I had made for tonight. Heres the link to the sausage wrapped hard boiled eggs that were prepped yesterday.

Frogmat on the Traeger Lil Tex

Frogmat with sausage balls.

I have to say they worked great. Absolutely non stick from the cheese that was gobbed out at the bottom to the grease that accumulated. I think these are an excellent product for the BBQ. I will also be using them in my oven. I already own silpat sheets and these will just add to my arsenal of non stick happiness.

Additionally the website claims are accurate in regards to cleanup. I washed mine in the sink and it was simple and easy with no scrubbing involved. Gotta love anything that works well and cleans up easy.

Easy Clean up

They are available in a variety of pre-cut sizes to suit your individual BBQ needs as well as custom sizes.

Bottom line I would recommend them highly, I have a few other projects in mind over the winter with them such as jerky.


Now as for the rest of my day it was a whole lot of prep for tomorrow Christmas Day and some great eats from tonight. Heres the pics.

Yummy Abts

Prepping the brine for the 4 turkeys

Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes prepped for Christmas Dinner

Acorn squash with butter cinnamon maple syrup and brown sugar.

Par boiling the parsnips to get them ready for the grill tomorrow.

Some of our Christmas Eve Eats

A couple of Tourtieres (done on the traeger)

MMMM the eggs rocked however next time more cheese.


Some cheeses and fruits and more munchies

Awesome Taco dip. So very yummy. Thanks to my friend Louisa for bringing it over!

My favorite insalata Caprese.

Wicked good. This puff pastry with brie, fig and walnut wine preserves plus a ton of smoked garlic knocked it out of the park. Just awesome.

Thats it for tonight.

Merry Christmas eve everyone.


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.


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.


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!