Hootenanny Ribs

Hootenanny Ribs
3-2-1 rib perfection on my Traeger Pro 34 wood pellet grill

Friday, December 30, 2011

Smokin' Good Time

BBQ.  Barbecue.  Barbeque.  Bar-B-Q.
Smoking meats using indirect heat with charcoal and wood can be delicious no matter how you spell it.  Pork, beef, poultry, fish, mutton, even goat, venison, and wild game can all be smoked, barbecued, successfully and flavorful.  Methods vary as much as the meats that are chosen to be smoked.  And the cooking meat with fire or hot coals is as old as humanity.

Growing up in the South, Mecca for good BBQ, I learned at a young age that I really liked it.  East Tennessee is the crossroads for BBQ.  There is Memphis BBQ, Carolina BBQ (North AND South), Georgia, Alabama, Kentucky... all with different variations of mostly pork (western Kentucky is famous for mutton), different sauces and rubs, and that is just in the Southeast.  Kansas City and Texas are both big BBQ regions with their own distinct styles.  Then there is Hawaiian, Jamaican, Mexican, even Mongolian BBQ; all over the world man has established tasty methods of preparing and cooking meats and food items with smoke from various woods in order to obtain savory and filling meals.  Now everywhere traveled I endeavor to try the local BBQ to see the local methods and flavors;  maybe finding something that I can incorporate into my process.  It is my "Quest for Smoked Nirvana" to paraphrase a friend.

It takes patience and practice to become adept at the art of BBQ.  ANYONE can become accomplished at cooking good BBQ.  All it takes is a passion for savory smoked goodness.  Everyone has their favorite meat, favorite seasoning and rubs, favorite spices, favorite woods to use, favorite sauces.  The novice can be successful using a regular kettle charcoal grill.  That is how I learned.  Then bigger smokers come into use.  Mine is an Oklahoma Joe Smoker that was given to me by my brother-in-law.  That's right - GIVEN.  It took a backhoe to move the heavy son-of-a-gun!  After receiving that beautiful piece of equipment and getting it cleaned up and BBQ-ready, my cooking became quite a bit more serious.  Reading BBQ manuals and blogs, asking friends their BBQ methods, learning from some who showed me the ropes on good rubs and preparation - all of this helped me become somewhat of an amateur pit master.  It is gratifying and enjoyable to cook, nay BBQ, good meat, enjoy some good Blues music and some cold adult beverages while my masterpieces slowly cook, then share the goodness with my family and friends.  It is an art when done correctly. 

BBQ is social... and it is in our DNA.   That's why I have a smokin' good time when I BBQ.



  1. Cool! Will be following.

  2. Looks good! Make sure to post some good recipes. Added to my food blogs to follow!

  3. The photos are so realistic that I am salivating! I can almost smell those ribs, Lou! Enjoy the Quest for Smoked Nirvana, and thanks for sharing the journey.