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Pork Barrel BBQ Blog

 
 

Where in the World is Pork Barrel BBQ – Missouri State Capital & Governor Mansion

Pork Barrel BBQ is attempting to get pictures of our All American Spice Rub tins in front of all 50 State Capitols and Governor Mansions.  In order to do this we need your help!!  Summer vacations are a great way to help us complete this challenge so don’t forget to take a tin of our All American Spice Rub with you if you plan to visit any of our 50 great state capitol cities this summer.

Our first submission comes from our home state – the great state of Missouri. Below is the Missouri State Capitol and the Missouri Governor’s Mansion with Pork Barrel BBQ’s All American Spice Rub.

Don’t forget to visit us at our website – www.porkbarrelbbq.com – and pick up some of our dry rub.

It is barbecue season and nothing makes your meal taste better than our All American dry rub! E-mail us your pictures at porkbarrelbbq@gmail.com!

 

 

The Tools of the BBQ Trade – Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker Smoker Assembly

 

Pork Barrel BBQ recently acquired two Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker Smokers. Over the Memorial Day Weekend I put one together and tried it out for the first time.  The following post hits on the highlights of assembling the Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker Smoker.

The Smokey Mountain Cooker Smoker comes in a large box and is relatively easy to assemble. It took me about 25 minutes to go from an unopened box to a smoker that was ready for cooking.

The first step in the assembly of the smoker is to attach the three legs to the heat shield that goes under the smoker – this is a heat shield and not an ash catch.

Next you attach the bottom of the smoker to the three legs and heat shield.

After you’ve installed the legs to the bottom of the smoker install the charcoal grate and ring.

 Next put the body of the smoker onto the base of the smoker.

Next you install four brackets to the inside of the base and place the water bowl inside the base.

Next put the first of the two grill grates into the smoker.

The final step is putting the second grill grate into the smoker.

Place the lid onto the smoker and you have a finished product!

The Finished Product with its protective cover!

We have heard nothing but great things about the Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker Smoker and can’t wait to try ours out. Check back soon for a post on how the maiden smoking with our new grills went.

 

Did Someone Say BBQ Cakes?!?!?!?

We spend all of our time thinking about BBQ, dry rubs, and bbq grills – but BBQ cakes?  Uh…no.  Check out these amazing creations by the fine folks at Cake Wrecks.  Here is a sneak peak that might make you hungry for BBQ (or not…)!
Pretty cool huh?  Now check this one out – this one, not so much…
 

Pork Barrel BBQ Was a Donor at the 2009 Taste of the South Charity Gala Held in Washington, DC on May 16

On Saturday, May 16 Pork Barrel BBQ donated our Pork Barrel BBQ All American Spice Rub to the 27th annual Taste of the South charity gala held at the D.C. Armory in Washington, D.C.  (We were very excited to see our name just to the right of one of our favorite BBQ joints – Gates BBQ in Kansas City, MO.)  This year’s featured charity was the Magnolia Speech School of Mississippi, a private, nonprofit, oral education program for children with hearing loss and language disorders.  Additionally, a small portion of the funds raised went to Jubilee Jobs, a Washington, D.C. based charity that provides support for disadvantaged job-seekers in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.

Taste of the South was a great time for all that attended, even though it felt like it was 100 degrees inside the D.C. Armory. We are already looking forward to next years Taste of the South and the chance to help some worthy charities.

In addition to giving back to the community Pork Barrel BBQ used this opportunity to unveil our new label on the sample bags of our All American Spice Rub. Here’s what they look like up close. Let us know what you think of the new look and don’t forget to visit us www.porkbarrelbbq.com!

 

Pork Barrel BBQ Issues BBQ Challenge to Jessica Ravitz of CNN

Jessica Ravitz of CNN wrote the following article on the quest for the best BBQ – I think its obvious that she is from Texas, California or the East Coast (and probably calls the Midwest “flyover” states) because she completely ignores Missouri barbecue in her article.  At Pork Barrel BBQ, we support the exploration of all things BBQ, and encourage Jessica to travel the nation a bit more in her quest – her first stops need to be Gates Bar-B-Q, Arthur Bryant’s, Oklahoma Joe’s in Kansas City, MO and Dickie Doo Bar-B-Que in Sedalia, MO.  Jessica – we at Pork Barrel BBQ will be glad to meet you any day that works for you in Kansas City and take you on a tour – just let us know what works – and best of all, we’ll pay for all your Missouri BBQ!  You can reach us at porkbarrelbbq@gmail.com.

Read Jessica’s article here:

http://www.cnn.com/2009/TRAVEL/05/22/barbecue.quest/index.html?iref=t2test_travelfri

Quest for the best barbecue

By Jessica Ravitz

(CNN) — If Daniel Vaughn has his way, he said, his newborn daughter will “teethe on a rib bone.”  It’s not that the Dallas, Texas, architect means to channel his inner caveman. He just loves barbecue and, given that his wife doesn’t, is hoping the little one will share his passion for ” ‘cue,” as he calls it.

“My main quest is to find the best in Texas,” said Vaughn, 31, who phoned CNN while he was heading to his 168th barbecue joint since he began his search in August 2006.

So far, listed among his favorites: Snow’s BBQ in Lexington and Kreuz Market in Lockhart.

“The best experience is finding a place you’ve never heard of, a place that’s not on anyone’s list,” he said. “It feels like you’ve really discovered something special.”

Vaughn’s journey, which is chronicled on his blog Full Custom Gospel BBQ (which also features reviews), is just one illustration of how this American culinary tradition has taken hold. It has spawned pilgrimages to out-of-the-way shacks, associations and “societies,” competitive cook-offs and countless debates among those who take this smoked-meat matter most seriously.iReport.com: Vaughn’s tasty experience at Kreuz Market

“It’s a combination of flavors, sights, smells, sounds, people and stories,” said Mark Dunkerley, 32, of Nashville, Tennessee, who embarked on his own barbecue quest last fall (a road trip spanning four Southern states) and named The Bar-B-Q Shop in Memphis, Tennessee, as his top pick. “Anything you spend six to 18 hours preparing, it’s more than a meal. It’s an event.” Check out some iReporter BBQ joint recommendations »

This “event” became possible about half a million years ago, when humans discovered fire. For about 250,000 years, humans have been throwing meat on and around the flames, said Steven Raichlen, best-selling author of “The Barbecue Bible.”

But the 16th century Spanish explorers to the Americas first chronicled the unique cooking technique that became barbecue when they came across the Taino Indians of the West Indies using a barbacoa, their word for a wooden framework propped above flames, to smoke meat.

It was a way to preserve meat and was later popularized by the poor and slaves, who didn’t have refrigeration, explained Amy Mills, daughter of barbecue’s legendary champion pit master and restaurateur, Mike Mills, with whom she co-wrote “Peace, Love, and Barbecue.”

The smoking approach was also useful in that it tenderized lesser cuts of meat, said Mills, whose father is behind the ribs celebrated at 17th Street Bar & Grill in Murphysboro, Illinois, and Memphis Championship Barbecue in Las Vegas, Nevada.

“Today, barbecue has enjoyed a renaissance,” securing its berth as “America’s original comfort food,” which is especially important in these tough economic times, when supporting local and affordable businesses is more popular than ever, Mills said. “It’s the most democratic food group. You can come into a barbecue restaurant and find people in ties and people in overalls. … You leave your title at the door.”

Depending on where you are, the meat and smoking wood that is used, the sauce (if there is one) or the rub, barbecue can mean many different things, Raichlen, the best-selling author, journalist, cooking teacher and TV host pointed out.

While it’s pulled pork with vinegar sauce in most of North Carolina, Raichlen said barbecue is, for example, mutton with butter and Worcestershire sauce in Owensboro, Kentucky, grilled bratwurst in Sheboygan, Wisconsin, and oysters on the half-shell with chipotle sauce in Tomales Bay, California.

“We live in a world of homogenization,” he said. Barbecue is “the last bastion of regional culture, and I think that’s one reason we prize it so dearly.”

Fans, in fact, prize barbecue for a multitude of reasons. For city slickers, who live in places where backyard smokers are not viable or even legal, a country jaunt for some finger-licking meat can be an escape. And the time, sweat and, indeed, “labor of love” shown by those who run these establishments, as Dunkerley of Nashville puts it, is something to behold and honor.

The slow food, which bucks the nation’s fast-food focus, is “a backlash against the hustle and bustle of daily life,” said Carolyn Wells, executive director and co-founder of the 10,000-member Kansas City Barbecue Society, which she calls “the world’s largest organization of barbecuing and grilling enthusiasts.”

“It’s not a solitary pursuit,” she said. “It’s something you do with your family and friends.”

This might be why barbecue is, for Frank Beaty, a reminder of different times and people. iReport.com: Beaty’s barbecue recommendations

He may live in Las Vegas, Nevada, today, but Beaty, 55, grew up in Texas, the grandson of Dempsey Davis, a man who “grew his own meat.” Using an “old brick smokehouse,” in Paris, Texas, Beaty said Dempsey practiced what he preached.

“My granddad said two things about barbecue,” Beaty said. “If you have to have teeth to eat it, it’s not right. And if you have to put sauce on it, it’s not right.”

For 35 years, wherever he’s traveled as a festival producer, Beaty said he’s always been on the lookout for the best and most tender barbecue a town can offer. One of his top choices, a surprise even to him: Everett and Jones in Oakland, California.

“Texas has the best barbecue, but somehow Everett and Jones migrated from the south,” Beaty said.

Because his wife will rarely join him, Vaughn — the man on a mission in Texas — counts on some friends to help him on his traveling feeding frenzy. In March, he said he and two cohorts outdid themselves, setting a record: 10 barbecue restaurants in one day.

“You get the meat sweats, where you rub your brow and it comes away smelling like smoke,” he said with a laugh. “But you get used to it.”

 

Where in the World is Pork Barrel BBQ – Childhood Home of President George W. Bush

Over the course of the past several months we have shown you “Where In The World Pork Barrel BBQ Has Been” and now we launch a new challenge for you the Pork Barrel BBQ dry rub fan.  It is our goal to get a picture of a Pork Barrel BBQ product (dry rub tin, hat, t-shirt or something else) in front of the homes of all 44 US Presidents, 50 State Capitol buildings, and 50 Governor’s Mansions.

Our first entry comes from Midland, TX and is the childhood home of our 43rd President – George W. Bush.

If you’re headed out on vacation this summer this is a great time to snap a few pictures with your favorite Pork Barrel BBQ product and send them on to us at porkbarrelbbq@gmail.com.

 

The Tools of the BBQ Trade – Pig Grill

We are always on the look out for interesting BBQ gadgets, dry rubs, bbq sauces, grills and smokers. A loyal supporter of Pork Barrel BBQ sent us this picture from a hardware store in Midland, TX of a pig grill (and in the background you can see a bull grill).  We have to admit that this has been placed on the Pork Barrel BBQ wish list, but we aren’t quite prepared to drop the $1,599.00 necessary to put this beauty in your backyard.

If you find any interesting BBQ gadgets, dry rubs, bbq sauces, grills, smokers or anything else related to barbecue that you think would make a good post on this site email us the details at porkbarrelbbq@gmail.com.

 

BBQ & Spice Rub Links

We spend entirely too much time searching the web for information on BBQ, Barbecue, Barbeque and Spice Rubs!  We thought we would create a page that has some of our favorite BBQ and Spice Rub links – we will add to this page over the coming days and months – if you have a favorite BBQ or Spice Rub link, or own your own Barbeque or Spice Rub company and want to be included on this page – please send us an email to porkbarrelbbq@gmail.com.  Also, if all this reading makes you hungry – please visit our favorite BBQ and Spice Rub site and be sure to order some of our All American Spice Rub!

Best BBQ Joints in America

BBQ Joints Around the World
  • Bodean’s in London – Next time you’re in London and you’re craving a little bit of home why not drop into one of Bodean’s locations in Soho, Tower Hill, Clapham, Fulham, or Westbourne Grove?  Read Our Review
BBQ Recipes
Food Shows and Sites
Local Organic Butchers and Grocery Stores
Our Favorite BBQ Twitters

The Tools of the BBQ Trade

Grills and Smokers
Supplies
  • Chimney Smoker – An essential tool – your coals are ready in 15 minutes, and you never have to use lighter fluid!
  • Hardwood Lump Charcoal – The best way to cook – burns hot and true, and contains no additives to ruin the taste of your barbeque or spice rub.
  • Meat Thermometer – The only way to know that its done and safe – nothing is worse than undercooked BBQ!
Other Great BBQ Sites
  • The Salt Lick – BBQ joint outside Austin, Texas – if we ever get to Austin, this one looks like it will make it on our Best BBQ Joints in America list.
 

Links – BBQ & Spice Rub

We spend entirely too much time searching the web for information on BBQ, Barbecue, Barbeque and Spice Rubs!  We thought we would create a page that has some of our favorite BBQ and Spice Rub links – we will add to this page over the coming days and months – if you have a favorite BBQ or Spice Rub link, or own your own Barbeque or Spice Rub company and want to be included on this page – please send us an email to porkbarrelbbq@gmail.com.  Also, if all this reading makes you hungry – please visit our favorite BBQ and Spice Rub site and be sure to order some of our All American Spice Rub!

Best BBQ Joints in America

BBQ Joints Around the World
  • Bodean’s in London – Next time you’re in London and you’re craving a little bit of home why not drop into one of Bodean’s locations in Soho, Tower Hill, Clapham, Fulham, or Westbourne Grove?  Read Our Review
BBQ Recipes
Food Shows and Sites
Local Organic Butchers and Grocery Stores
Our Favorite BBQ Twitters

The Tools of the BBQ Trade

Grills and Smokers
Supplies
  • Chimney Smoker – An essential tool – your coals are ready in 15 minutes, and you never have to use lighter fluid!
  • Hardwood Lump Charcoal – The best way to cook – burns hot and true, and contains no additives to ruin the taste of your barbeque or spice rub.
  • Meat Thermometer – The only way to know that its done and safe – nothing is worse than undercooked BBQ!
Other Great BBQ Sites
  • The Salt Lick – BBQ joint outside Austin, Texas – if we ever get to Austin, this one looks like it will make it on our Best BBQ Joints in America list.
 

Pork Barrel BBQ Competion Team – Pork Barrel BBQ To Compete in the 17th Annual Safeway National Capital Barbecue Battle

Pork Barrel BBQ is proud to announce that we will be participating in the 17th Annual Safeway National Capital Barbecue Battle, June 27-28 in Washington, D.C.  The Barbecue Battle takes place between 9th and 14th Streets, on Pennsylvania Ave., NW.

Saturday, June 27 is the Kansas City Barbecue Society Event in which we will be preparing brisket and pulled pork.

Sunday, June 28 is the Memphis in May Barbecue Event in which we will be preparing ribs and pulled pork.

Come on down and say hi and enjoy the festivities.  Admission for the event is just $10 for adults/$5 for kids ages 6-12/Free for kids 5 & under.

In addition to Pork Barrel BBQ’s Competition Barbecue Team there will be top competition barbecue teams from around the country vying for over $40,000 in cash and prizes.  The Safeway Demonstration Stage will host celebrity chefs who will share their secrets with you through cooking demonstrations.  Stop by The Safeway Sampling Pavilion for free food samples and recipes.  There will be vendors selling barbecue from around the country (Memphis Ribs – Carolina Chicken – Texas Brisket) for your dining pleasure.  In addition to great barbecue, there will be over 30 bands performing on 3 stages all weekend long.

The best thing about the weekend is that it is for charity.  Admission to the Barbecue Battle includes a donation to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Washington.

For highlights of last years Barbecue Battle check out this page on the 2008 Barbecue Battle.