Since this is my very first blog post, I am going to set out to clarify the difference between BBQ and grilling. They are terms that I will probably use quite a bit, but are NOT interchangeable. Not in my vocabulary. I have looked them both up many times in my life and will give my condensed version here for a definition.
BBQ- The cooking of food, typically meat, at low temperatures over an indirect fire either of wood, charcoal,or gas.
Grilling- The cooking of food, typically meat, at high temperatures over a direct fire either of wood, charcoal, or gas.
Now that that is settled, we can go on. I prefer doing BBQ , but love to grill as well. It's just a matter of how much time I have to dedicate to supper that night. For the most part, I reserve BBQing for the weekends during the summer, and grilling is for weeknights during the summer and most of the time during the winter months. Grilling is NOT a season, it is a year long event. I'll admit though that I will typically resort to the gas grill for those winter evening cooks, otherwise it is a good old Weber kettle.
Now that the winter weather is finally showing signs of breaking, I will post some pictures of my gear as I get outside and get the time to clean everything up for summer use. Besides the grills mentioned above, my backyard sports a very nice BBQ pit made by Dave Klose from Texas. He makes a quality pit that will last more than a lifetime. I also have an FEC100 made by cookshack that is in the kitchen in the back of our deli, and a spicewine cooker that we bought for possible on-site catering gigs. We haven't put the spicewine through it's paces yet, but I have used one before and they are a fantastic pit as well.
OK, that is the basics for outside. I have a pretty nice indoor kitchen as well, but nothing as nice as the one we have at the deli, that's for sure. I'll spend a day talking about that kitchen as well and posting a few pictures.
What I will be talking about on a regular basis? Well, I don't really know for sure myself, but rest assured there will be some BBQ and/or grilling talk. I will probably throw lots of other food adventures into the mix I am sure. I roast my own coffee beans and may have some info in there about that coming down the road. I have also just started to make my own wine, and that may crop up once in a while. I also don't know how often I will be posting. For now, it will come as often as I feel like spending a bit of time writing.
Don't expect to get any healthy eating tips here. You will have a hard time finding them. You never know though, they may just crop up unexpectedly.
My cooking background? Well, let's see, I would have to say it comes from both my mother and my father. Not sure why, but I always gravitated toward the kitchen and mom was always more than willing to share her cooking expertise if she wasn't too busy. I believe my first foray into baking was probably a sour cream coffee cake that mom had a recipe for and I know I made that quite a bit. It didn't stop there. Pancakes were one of my favorite things to eat, and I know those were made lots of times after I got it right (story about that later down the road). I just always liked being in the kitchen and it shows.
We always loved it when it was grilling time. Dad was of course the grill master of the house as is the way of most households across America. I picked up all of the basics from him and more. But besides the grilling, he also gave me my first peak into BBQ and smoking. We had a walk-in smokehouse on the small farm that I grew up on. I don't remember a whole lot about it, but I do remember some of the smoked fish that was produced out of it. Oh man was that some good stuff. The smell of sweet smoke was present in that building looooong after it was turned into a tool shed. So, my dad was where I got the smoke thing from.
I eventually started doing this stuff on my own and wound up finding a nest of chuckle-heads on the internet called the bbq-brethren. They have become a second family to me and a crutch for my addiction called BBQ.
More info before I close for today. I also dabble in competition BBQ and will probably post about those during the year. I haven't hit the formula completely solid yet, but have done well in every category at least once. Just can't put them all together at the same time. Oh well, that will come eventually. If not, it is still fun and I will do it as often as my schedule and finances allow.