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WhiteTrash BBQ -- Real Pit Barbecue from New York City. This is the story of a fire obsessed guy, living in Brooklyn, with a dream of producing award winning, competition busting, real Barbeque. Come live the dream as I compete around the country in the KCBS Championship Barbecue circuit.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Fourth of July and Grilled Porterhouse Steaks

I'm still here. I'm having a hard time finding my voice lately, so the blog's been suffering. I wonder what I should be telling you. Do you want me to go back to the basics and teach how to grill and how to barbecue? Do you want to know about contests and events? Recipes? Gossip? It's beginning to feel like I've done it all before.

I hope you all had a good Fourth of July. Mine was interesting as all events with the family tend to be. My parents seem to be convinced that we're destitute as they suggested that I cook for the holiday but they would purchase the food. I tried to explain to them that there was no need for that, but they insisted. They told me to buy whatever I wanted, within reason and they would reimburse us. OK. Deal.

On July 2nd, my daughter and I were shopping and noticed that porterhouse steaks were on sale for $4.49 a pound. That's a great price around here, so I called my mother and asked if she and my father wanted steak for dinner. She told me that my father had already purchased chicken. Wait a minute. They told me to buy the food and they'd reimburse me. Good thing I called.

OK says I. Chicken it is. That's fine with me as grilled chicken is one of my favorite meals. I hang up and continue shopping. My father calls as we're checking out and tells my daughter that we should buy the steaks. Since we're done shopping I tell myself that I'll come buy the steaks tomorrow.

We go home, unpack the groceries and settle in and I get to thinking. It's July 2nd and I saw maybe ten packages of steak in the case. I doubt they'll be restocking before the fourth, so I should buy the steaks tonight. I walk back to the store and find that my concerns were well founded as they only have two packages of steak left. One looked great, the other not so much. I call my father and explain that I could only purchase 3 steaks and ask if he could buy three more where he lives, which is about 45 miles away from me. He says OK and we're all set for the holiday.

The holiday arrives and I'm thumbing through an old cookbook called Grilling With Chef George Hirsch (1994 - Hearst Books) and I discover his recipe for Porterhouse Marinade.
Perfect. I have all the ingredients on hand. This is Kismet. Looking further through the book he calls for serving the grilled and marinaded porterhouse steaks with a "Savory Bourbon Sauce."
  • 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 steak sauce (I used 3 parts A1 and and 1 part Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce)
  • 1/4 cup bourbon (I used Knob Creek)
  • 1/4 cup honey (I used Billie Bee)
  • Juice of 1 lemon (I used a yellow one)
So with my game plan set, I make the marinade and set the 3 steaks I have into the bath and I make the bourbon sauce. I think to myself, that this is great. I'll have 3 steaks that are marinaded and 3 that aren't. Everyone will be happy.

My parents arrive with bags of chicken breast. It must have been about 15 pounds of chicken. What? Where's the steak? My mother explains that she'd like a piece of chicken and since it was already purchased they'd bring it over anyway. She then tells me that my brother has the steaks and he's marinading them. She then adds, "I hope you didn't marinade your steak. I hate steaks that have been marinaded." Great.

Now you may remember my son is a vegetarian. I ask him what he wants for dinner and he tells me that he wants grilled portabello mushrooms, but don't marinade them. He wants them plain.
OK. Whatever. It saves me a step, but I'm beginning to wonder about all this marinade paranoia. What did a marinade ever do to anything except make it better?

My parents also arrived with 3lbs of potato salad, 3 lbs of coleslaw and 3 lbs of macaroni salad. How many people are we planning to feed here?

So my brother arrives and he has this huge bowl full of porterhouse and rib eye steaks. I ask him why so many and he tells me that my parents told him that we have no food and they needed to bring everything. He emptied out their freezer. Huh? Oh yeah, destitute.

So I grill up the steaks, with my 3 we had 10 steaks for six people. They were all pretty good, with my brother's marinade being a traditional teriyaki and salt marinade (boy they love their salt at home) and mine using Chef Hirsch's marinade as mentioned earlier in this long and rambling post. The porterhouse steaks were huge. They filled a 10" plate and were at least 1 1/2" thick. The rib eyes held their own as well. It was an embarrassment of riches.

The porterhouse marinade was pretty good adding a nice touch of heat from the Tabasco and a nice level of complexity from the steak sauces and Worcestershire. But the Savory Bourbon sauce was awful. All you could taste was bourbon and lemon. Ugh. Thank God I served it on the side otherwise some good meat would have been ruined. The un-marinaded portabello mushrooms tasted like a grilled mushroom. OK, but nothing special and half of them were left uneaten.

As dinner progressed and everyone was stuffing their faces my mother casually mentioned that my father may have either lung cancer or pneumonia. And how was your day?

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At 6:15 PM, Blogger Chris said...

Do me a favor and tell your family that I'm destitute! I could use a few extra steaks:)

I like your posts because, like this one, you say "Hey I tried this recipe (and give credit), this worked but this part didn't."

At 3:05 AM, Anonymous Pigtrip said...

Sorry to hear about your Dad.

As the for question at the top, assuming is wasn't just rhetorical: I want to read about what you're doing, what you're cooking/eating (photos, please), what you're thinking and what you're feeling, no holds barred. And it doesn't have to be just BBQ.

At 9:06 AM, Blogger Bill Parlaman said...

I like to read other blogs to get ideas and inspiration. If I find a post on a blog I like or don't agree with, I'll write about my opinion and then link to the blog to give full credit and help grow their readership.

I'll also read online forums to find out what's bugging people and then I can write about it.

I also wouldnt worry about just writing on BBQ, your last post about the homeless guy was good reading.

Hang in there!
Bill Parlaman


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