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Posts Tagged ‘pork shoulder’

Product Review – The Wusthof 14 Inch Grand Slicer

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Pork Barrel BBQ is thrilled to have a guest post from George Hensler, Pitmaster of the Who Are Those Guys? Competition BBQ Team, that reviews the new Wusthof 14 inch Grand Slicer. To read more of George’s posts check out the Who Are Those Guys? website.

THE BIG MEAT SLICER
A test drive of sorts

by George Hensler

Mike Fay is the President of the Mid Atlantic Barbecue Association. He is also the pit master for his own barbecue team Aporkalypse Now. In his spare time, he cooks with Jack’s Old South BBQ Team. When he is not cooking BBQ, he is thinking BBQ. So it is of no surprise to me that when he contacted the folks at Wusthof knifes with an idea he had for developing a knife for use by competition BBQ teams, they were more than receptive.

When Mike asked me to test drive the new knife I was a bit apprehensive as I am a self proclaimed electric knife kind of guy. I will freely admit, anytime I need to slice, if possible the Cuisinart is coming out. So what I am saying here is the test is being conducted by a manual slicer challenged person or MSCP for short. I guess in today’s politically correct world it is still ok to refer to one as slicer challenged, if not, I apologize in advance for any of you who may be offended. For those that are not offended, just give me a minute, I’ll get around to you sooner or later.

First few tidbits from the designer, the knife is “34cm (14inch) long thin bladed slider 54mm deep at the heel with a radius cutting edge hollow ground to reduce drag.  The advantage to the radius is that the whole blade edge isn’t engaging the object to be sliced at the same time allowing for even less drag, yet still making a continuous cut with no saw markings.”

Mike goes on to say, “The other plus to the radius design on the blade is that when you make a draw cut (pull the blade toward you) the physiology of your arm causes your elbow to lift up, causing you to change the angle of attack of the blade. On a straight traditional slicer you either end up cutting with the very tip of the blade or break your wrist to allow the blade to remain flat, reducing your leverage. The radius blade allows you to maintain maximum leverage by not having to break your wrist while the cutting edge still tracks parallel to the food.”

I don’t know about all of that arm tracking and angle of attack on the meat but here is what I do know. I cooked a brisket flat and pork butt to act as test specimens for my scientific experimentation. I first tried my hand with the brisket. Keeping in mind I am self admitted MSCP. I was able to slice the brisket into various thicknesses with one draw of the knife, from very thin to, as contest cuts go, very thick. Mike had told me the knife was designed to cut on the draw, not going forward.

I did find it necessary to hold my thumb in the vicinity of the cut on the side of the meat closest to my body to avoid tearing the bark. I found with a little practice, I was able to produce slices of even thickness, all with just one stroke, just like he said. The same held true when I cut the pork. I first sliced the money muscle, then a few other choice muscles, all with similar results.

Being from Maryland and a proponent of pit beef sandwiches I thought what the heck, why not give the blade a go on a nice hunk of pit cooked top round. Years ago, at the numerous “Bull Roasts” held around the State, the ONLY way to slice the beef was with a blade. Knife skills were needed to get thin slices and those using an electric meat slicer were thought to be serving lesser product. In the past 15-20 years most pit beef cookers have all went to deli slicers. With this move knife skills for most went away as well.

I am happy to report the “Big Meat Slicer” tore through the top round like a champ.  The knife turned out mound after mound of prime sandwich slices. That is, once I got the hang of it. After using the product for a day or two it seemed even I, a known MSCP, could slice meat like the butchers of yesteryear. That is really saying something, about the knife I mean.

Overall, the knife performed as advertised if not better in my humble opinion. With a little practice, even I was able to turn out a decent slice, time after time. My only suggestion would be to include in the accompanying paperwork some instruction noting the knife is designed to cut on the back stroke. If you purchase one, be sure to add an order for a large sized blade cover, chances are, you won’t have anything large enough in your current knife bag, this thing is the Ultimate Big Meat Slicer for sure.

Wusthof Ultimate Big Meat Slicer

$139.000

Available at www.mabbqa.com

Pork Barrel BBQ Competes with Barbecue’s Best at 32nd Annual American Royal

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Last weekend, Pork Barrel BBQ’sCompetition BBQ Team headed to Kansas City, Missouri to cook against hundreds of the nations top barbecue pitmasters at the 32nd Annual American Royal Barbecue. Known throughout the world of barbecue as the World Series of Barbecue, the American Royal was first held in 1980 and has grown from humble beginnings into the largest barbecue conteston the planet. There are two contests held during the American Royal. The Invitational, held on Saturday, is an invite only contest made up of teams that have won at least one Grand Championship in the past year. The Open, held on Sunday, is open to anyone wishing to participate and usually attracts upwards of 500 teams.

This marked Pork Barrel BBQ’s second time competing in the American Royal Open and our first time competing in the American Royal Invitational. We earned our invitation to the 32ndannual American Royal Invitational contest by winning the Grand Championship at the 2011 Safeway National Capital Barbecue Battle in Washington, DC, the nation’s largest barbecue festival.

In Saturday’s American Royal Invitationalwe were ecstatic to finish 26th out of 142 of the best teams in the world of competition BBQ!

Pork Barrel BBQ Takes 10th Place in Brisket in the 32nd Annual American Royal Barbecue Invitational Contest

Our finishes in each of the categories were:

Chicken – 41st
Ribs- 60th
Pork- 70th
Brisket- 10th

In Sunday’s American Royal Open we continued our strong weekend by finishing 40th out of 483 teams! Finishing in the top 10% of such a large and accomplished number of teams was a thrill for us!

Pork Barrel BBQ Takes Sixth Place in Chicken at the 32nd Annual American Royal Barbecue Open Contest

Our finishes in each of the categories were:

Chicken- 6th
Ribs- 120th
Pork- 128th
Brisket- 159th

On top of this, Pork Barrel BBQ got it’s first perfect 180 score in the Dessert category in the American Royal Open Dessert contest thanks to the amazing mixed berry cheesecake cooked by Heath’s parent’s Rex & Barbara!!!

It was a huge thrill for us to cook in our home state of Missouri and in one of the BBQ hot spots of America! Beyond the success we had on the smoker, it was an amazing chance for us to hang out with some of our BBQ heroes, mentors andfriends as well as catch up with friends and family who live it Missouri (Thanks for all your help Joe andBob!!). It is always special when we get to hang out with great pitmasters and friends like Rod Gray of Pellet Envy, Pat Burke of Tower Rock, Mike Mills of 17th Street Bar & Grill, Dave Raymond (AKA Sweet Baby Ray) BBQ Sauce God and founder of Sweet Baby Ray’s, Neil Strawder of Bigmista’s BBQ, Danielle Dimovski of Diva Q, Tuffy Stone of Cool Smoke, Paul Huff of GoneHoggin.com, George Shore of Pitmaker and so many more!!!!

Heath& Brett withBBQ Legends Mike Mills, Dave Raymond (AKA – Sweet Baby Ray) and Pat Burke!

 

With BBQ Pitmasters Neil Strawder, Mike Mills, Tuffy Stone, Pat Burke and Culinary Students

In addition to the main competitions Heath cooked in the Kansas City Barbecue Society’s Grillmaster’s Series against Danielle Dimovski of Diva Q. The battle between the U.S. and Canada was held on the stage of the KCBS Great American BBQ Tour led by Mike and Chris Peters. Last year Pork Barrel came out on top against one of the legends of BBQ, Johnny Trigg. Heath made it back to back wins at the Royal by gaining the stomach’s of the judges in his Steak Battle against Diva Q!

Heath and Diva Q at the KCBS Grillmaster Steak Cookoff

Check out the Kansas City Star’s coverage of the American Royal and Pork Barrel BBQ!

It’s been a long season the BBQ circuit for Pork Barrel BBQ, but it’s not quite over yet. We’ll be loading up our trailer and heading to Lynchburg, Tennessee in a couple weeks to compete in the most prestigious of all the BBQ contests, The Jack Dainel’s World Championship Invitational Barbecue!!!

MIM Scrapbook Entry #1 – BBQ Hints from TLC BBQ Pitmaster and Memphis in May BBQ World Champion Tuffy Stone of Cool Smoke & Q Barbeque

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This is the first in a series of blog posts on our adventures at the 2010 Memphis in May World Barbecue Championships. Over the course of 4 days we racked up 4 top 15 finishes (we even managed to place 4th in the World Championship’s beef catagory with our brisket) and several hours of amazing videos from some of the most interesting and influential folks in BBQ. We thought we’d kick off our series with a bang – our first entry into our 2010 Memphis in May scrapbook is an interview with TLC BBQ Pitmaster and down right nice guy Tuffy Stone of Cool Smoke and Q Barbeque fame.

Over the course of the past year we’ve had the chance to get to know some of the great legends of BBQ, including guys like Pat Burke and Mike Mills – the founders of the Legends of BBQ Club. Tuffy, a friend and fellow Virginian, is a guy who has made a name for himself and risen to “Legend” status in short order. Tuffy is pitmaster of the Cool Smoke competition BBQ team and owner of Q Barbeque (two locations in Midlothian, VA and Hampton, VA). If the name Tuffy Stone is ringing a bell in your head but you just can’t quite place where you’ve heard it before it is probably because you saw him on TLC’s hit show BBQ Pitmasters.

For a guy with celebrity status and the ability to make anything placed on a smoker taste like a five star meal you might think he’d be working in the distance and shadows of his Jambo Pit built by legendary smoker builder and artisan Jamie Geer (Tuffy’s pit looks more like a cherry red Corvette than a smoker – it performs more like one too!), but he isn’t. Tuffy is as approachable as they come and loves to talk BBQ with fellow competitors, customers and fans.

The best part of the Competition BBQ circuit isn’t the great barbecue found around every corner, it is the chance to meet and become friends with some of the best folk around – like Tuffy. BBQ teams from around the country compete in contests sanctioned by a number of barbecue societies including KCBS, MIM, and MBN. These teams use everything from Weber Grills to Jambo Pits to homemade smokers to compete for prizes and tropies in catagories like chicken, beef brisket, pork shoulder, pork ribs, and whole hog.  If you love to grill find a contest near your home and sign up – you’ll have a blast and meet some great folks!

Now sit back and enjoy our interview with BBQ Pitmaster Tuffy Stone of Cool Smoke.

For more information on Pork Barrel BBQ and to follow our adventures at Memphis in May 2010 stay tuned to our blog and Twitter pages.

“Tong-to-tong combat” – Nice Article on Smoke in the Valley

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Tong-to-tong combat

A park becomes a smoking section as competitive barbecuers pit their pit skills against the best at Smoke in the Valley.

By Elisa Ludwig

For The Inquirer

Pulled Pork – How to Cook Pulled Pork

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Ah, pulled pork – how I do love thee pulled pork?  Let me count the delicious ways.  We have a lot of folks ask us via email, twitter, or at food shows how to smoke pulled pork.  We almost always make the following pulled pork BBQ recipe – its simple, and turns out perfect BBQ’d pulled pork every time! We are big Kansas City BBQ fans, but this pulled pork recipe should make folks from all BBQ regions happy!


We researched the origins of pulled pork – some folks say pulled pork originates from Mexico – known as Carnitas.  Of course, don’t even get Americans started in which region pulled pork was created – Memphis pulled pork, Alabama pulled pork, Kansas City pulled pork – it quickly sounds like a scene from Forrest Gump.  Whatever the origins of pulled pork – we love it and here is our recipe:


Easy Smoked Pork Shoulder / Pulled Pork Recipe

1 – 7 pound pork shoulder (also known as Boston Butt – bone in or boneless work great)

2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

4-6 tablespoons Pork Barrel BBQ’s All American Spice Rub

6 cans of beer

1 aluminum drip pan

5 chunks of hickory wood

3 chunks of oak wood

1 Bag of Lump Hardwood Charcoal


Get your smoker’s temperature up to 225-250 degrees. When lighting your charcoal, be sure to only use hardwood lump charcoal and always start with a charcoal chimney starter. If you are using a BBQ grill, you can still smoke! Just place the charcoal in a pile on one side of the grill, and place the meat on the other side.


There are several keys to making great pulled pork.  While the smoker gets to temperature rub 1 tablespoon of olive oil on the first side of your pork shoulder and then rub 2-3 tablespoons of Pork Barrel BBQ’s All American Spice Rub into the meat. Repeat on opposite side. Allow meat to rest with rub on it for at least 30 minutes (this can be done ahead of time and placed in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours).  Be patient – amazing pulled pork is only a day away!



Place your drip pan into the smoker directly under where the pork shoulder will be sitting and pour the beer into it. If using a grill, simply put your beer into a disposable aluminum pan and place under your pork shoulder. Since we are both from Missouri, we like grilling with (and drink!) Bud Light (but we sometimes use PBR)!  We like to have Bud Light around when we actually eat our Pulled Pork – Pulled Pork and Bud Light – a great combo.


Here you can see our perfect beer foam – ready to make some great BBQ pulled pork!

Place the wood chunks onto the hot coals in your smoker and then place the grill grate in the smoker. Place your meat directly above the drip pan and close your smoker. If cooking in a smoker, I place the wood into the coals, but if I’m cooking on a BBQ grill, I soak the wood for 30 minutes to allow it to have a longer smoke (you can’t go wrong either way!).  Making sure your pulled pork has great smoke is a key to great taste – whether your pulled pork is just for cooking in your backyard, or are entering the pulled pork in competition.

Make sure the temperature remains in the 225-250 degree range throughout the smoking process. Every couple of hours make sure you have enough fuel on your fire to maintain the desired BBQ smoker temperature. A pork shoulder should remain in the smoker for 11-13 hours – and will yield amazing pulled pork. Here’s what it looks like when you put it on the grill:



And here’s what it looks like when its done! The internal temperature (always use a meat thermometer) should reach 195 degrees F – be sure to wrap it in foil immediately after cooking and let it rest for at least 30 minutes – this is one of the keys to juicy pulled pork!


Once its had a chance to rest, it should pull very easily – I just use some forks and pull away! Don’t throw away the brown exterior shell – its the best part – known as “bark” it tastes like candy!  Look at the crazy delicious pulled pork below!


I serve the pulled pork on a kaiser or potato roll with Pork Barrel BBQ Sauce and a side of slaw or some sauce – enjoy!!

Recipe – Pulled Pork

Posted on:

Ah, pulled pork – how I do love thee pulled pork?  Let me count the delicious ways.  We have a lot of folks ask us via email, twitter, or at food shows how to smoke pulled pork.  We almost always make the following pulled pork BBQ recipe – its simple, and turns out perfect BBQ’d pulled pork every time! We are big Kansas City BBQ fans, but this pulled pork recipe should make folks from all BBQ regions happy!


We researched the origins of pulled pork – some folks say pulled pork originates from Mexico – known as Carnitas.  Of course, don’t even get Americans started in which region pulled pork was created – Memphis pulled pork, Alabama pulled pork, Kansas City pulled pork – it quickly sounds like a scene from Forrest Gump.  Whatever the origins of pulled pork – we love it and here is our recipe:


Easy Smoked Pork Shoulder / Pulled Pork Recipe

1 – 7 pound pork shoulder (also known as Boston Butt – bone in or boneless work great)

2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

4-6 tablespoons Pork Barrel BBQ’s All American Spice Rub

6 cans of beer

1 aluminum drip pan

5 chunks of hickory wood

3 chunks of oak wood

1 Bag of Lump Hardwood Charcoal


Get your smoker’s temperature up to 225-250 degrees. When lighting your charcoal, be sure to only use hardwood lump charcoal and always start with a charcoal chimney starter. If you are using a BBQ grill, you can still smoke! Just place the charcoal in a pile on one side of the grill, and place the meat on the other side.


There are several keys to making great pulled pork.  While the smoker gets to temperature rub 1 tablespoon of olive oil on the first side of your pork shoulder and then rub 2-3 tablespoons of Pork Barrel BBQ’s All American Spice Rub into the meat. Repeat on opposite side. Allow meat to rest with rub on it for at least 30 minutes (this can be done ahead of time and placed in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours).  Be patient – amazing pulled pork is only a day away!



Place your drip pan into the smoker directly under where the pork shoulder will be sitting and pour the beer into it. If using a grill, simply put your beer into a disposable aluminum pan and place under your pork shoulder. Since we are both from Missouri, we like grilling with (and drink!) Bud Light (but we sometimes use PBR)!  We like to have Bud Light around when we actually eat our Pulled Pork – Pulled Pork and Bud Light – a great combo.


Here you can see our perfect beer foam – ready to make some great BBQ pulled pork!

Place the wood chunks onto the hot coals in your smoker and then place the grill grate in the smoker. Place your meat directly above the drip pan and close your smoker. If cooking in a smoker, I place the wood into the coals, but if I’m cooking on a BBQ grill, I soak the wood for 30 minutes to allow it to have a longer smoke (you can’t go wrong either way!).  Making sure your pulled pork has great smoke is a key to great taste – whether your pulled pork is just for cooking in your backyard, or are entering the pulled pork in competition.

Make sure the temperature remains in the 225-250 degree range throughout the smoking process. Every couple of hours make sure you have enough fuel on your fire to maintain the desired BBQ smoker temperature. A pork shoulder should remain in the smoker for 11-13 hours – and will yield amazing pulled pork. Here’s what it looks like when you put it on the grill:



And here’s what it looks like when its done! The internal temperature (always use a meat thermometer) should reach 195 degrees F – be sure to wrap it in foil immediately after cooking and let it rest for at least 30 minutes – this is one of the keys to juicy pulled pork!


Once its had a chance to rest, it should pull very easily – I just use some forks and pull away! Don’t throw away the brown exterior shell – its the best part – known as “bark” it tastes like candy!  Look at the crazy delicious pulled pork below!


I serve the pulled pork on a kaiser or potato roll with Pork Barrel BBQ Sauce and a side of slaw or some sauce – enjoy!!

Pork Barrel BBQ