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.
Friday, July 30, 2010
What Will They Think of Next: BBQ Ice Cream
Now this is a new one to me. I haven't tried it yet, so I don't know what "BBQ flavor" is. If it's smoke flavor or BBQ sauce, you'll have to find out. You guys are going to have to try this on your own. For some reason, the thought of this repulses me.
Having a favorite ice cream flavor is a risky proposition with the soft-serve alchemists at Momofuku Milk Bar conjuring things like the new BBQ flavor, which you should feel free to scoop up with potato chips. There’s also a new creamed corn flavor. Because the only way to improve ice cream is more cream.
This Saturday, Nike is closing down the streets of lower Manhattan to host the Nike Sportswear @ 21 Mercer Street block takeover for "1 Love" all borough block party. This all ages event from 6pm-8pm is free, open to the public and features live performances, giveaways and food from Hill Country Barbeque.
That's right. FREE BBQ FROM HILL COUNTRY! Sounds like a great place to be. Mercer Street between Grand and Howard from 6pm to 8pm. Something tells me the food will be going fast.
I found this over at Slow Food Rebellion and frankly, I am out right stealing it. Monty stole the video too, so I don't feel so bad. Please go to his blog and read his entire post "Joe York Rules The World," but here's how he starts it off..
"Sometimes when I forget why I started BBQing with extreme prejudice - when I worry more about how to impress KCBS judges rather than my family and neighbors - I'm thrown a bone from a Good Samaritan and I am able to call to mind what a true blessing BBQ is to me and my culture. That bone often comes in the form of a Joe York documentary."
As I'm sweating working out how I'm going to do my pig roast for tomorrow this wonderful video and post made me stop, reassess and relax.
It's only barbecue folks. It's supposed to be fun and simple.
Since I was so verbose yesterday, I'll keep it short and sweet today. Here is a picture of the Ed Mitchell designed and constructed by Wilmington Grills pig cooker that will be used on Saturday. Look at the size of this beast! I can't wait.
Everything is in motion. There's no turning back now. Last night Kevin Lincoln of the New York BBQ Lover's Meetup Group and Ned Berke of Sheepshead Bites and I your humble blogger drove up to Norwalk Connecticut and borrowed an Ed WilsonEd Mitchell designed, not to be confused, as I had just done, with the esteemed Connecticut based pitmaster Ed Wilson, constructed by Wilmington Grills pig roaster from Nancee and Greg of Purple Turtle Catering Company, one of Connecticut's best catering companies and award winning barbecue chefs, in order prepare for the bacchanalian orgy of food and drink that will be served this Saturday in a private yard in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn.
Scott Smith, pitmaster extraordinaire of New York City's premiere barbecue joint RUB has ordered the 60lb or so sacrifice of pork for me that will be roasted and smoked by us and I'll be picking it up Friday.
Now the work falls on my shoulders. How will I prepare said hog? Will it be injected? Rubbed? Cooked skin up or down? Butterflied? Stupefied? Testified? Will we be doing a pig picking where all you need is a beer in one hand and a fork in the other? Or will the pig be removed from its fiery grates and its body parts carved up into more, shall we say "acceptable" presentation serving pieces for the less squeamish?
I got some thinking to do as this will be my first pig cooking done solo. Well, not really solo as I will be turning to the ever talented Kevin Lincoln for assistance and RUB'sMatt Fisher for his chefly advice and counsel.
Pray for good weather. Pray for sanity. Pray for properly cooked swine. As the bible says...
"There were burnt offerings in abundance, together with the fat of the fellowship offerings and the drink offerings that accompanied the burnt offerings. So the service of the temple of the LORD was reestablished."
Now I don't know about re-establishing the temple, but a good time is guaranteed for all.
Photo of the pig roast above courtesy of A Brooklyn Life, whom I've never met and from whom I stole this picture and whose blog I enjoy even if it is so focused on the hipster side of the borough ignoring its heart, but am inviting to this pig roast nonetheless.
PS. Do you think I got enough links into one post?
I've been to the restaurant twice, but didn't see any pizza tossing at either visit. Am I missing something? I didn't really care about the show - how is the food?
On my first visit a couple of months ago, a companion and I entered just as Del Corso was closing for the night. They graciously opened up the back dining room and served us a great pizza. Allthou the dough can use some salt, I was intrigued and pleased enough by the tastes to plan a repeat visit.
My wife, daughter and I went there on a recent Saturday night for dinner. We didn't have pizza, as my daughter had pizza for lunch that day, but choose to focus on the main menu by sharing the various appetizers.
We had the Fritto Misto, lightly fried calamari and baby shrimp, which was outstandingly light and grease free allowing the flavor of the fish to shine. This was served with an very garlicky tomato dipping sauce. Lovely.
Then we had the Meatball Al Sugo which was an incredible dish of flavorful lightly seasoned meatballs of multiple sizes in a completely different tomato sauce with large pieces of fresh basil. I don't usually like restaurant meatballs. I find them to be completely under seasoned and tough. Here, they were just like mama used to make except there was no consistency to size. Some meatballs were the size of golf balls, others like dimes.
Next up was an eggplant dish of which I can't remember the name, it's not on the internet menu but is on the regular menu at the restaurant, that consisted of layered slices of un-breaded and un-fried eggplant, tomato sauce and store made mozzarella. I'd love to describe the taste of this dish, but we inhaled it. It was that good.
This was followed by one of the specials of the day - a handmade gnocchi with arugula and an Italian "meat sauce". This was simply outstanding. Tender gnocchi, fall apart meat and mushrooms in a wine enriched gravy. It was rich, thick and surprising light. This needs to be on the menu every night.
The plates went back to the kitchen looking as if we licked them clean.
We finished the meal with a dessert of fresh zeppolies topped with warm nutella and powered sugar. Need I say more?
While the food was outstanding, the front of the house service was a bit lacking. We arrived around 8:30 on Saturday night and the back dining room was almost empty with only two tables occupied. A cute Russian hostess greeted us and told us to sit anywhere. We chose a table in the back which was set with four plates but no silverware.
As we settled in a waiter, who had an accent I couldn't place, came and filled our water glasses and dropped off the menus. I asked if there were any specials and he said, "He's going to tell you," pointing to a man in a stained t-shirt and jeans drinking wine and laughing with a group of friends at the next table.
A few minutes later the man came over and leaned on the wall next us and began to rattle off the specials. He didn't introduce himself or explain why he was telling us the specials instead of the waiter. He returned to the table where he was sitting while we made our choices.
As we were deciding, a basket of warm bread was dropped on the table with a bowl of olive oil and balsamic vinegar for dipping. In a few minutes, the man returned and took our food order.
The food came very quickly, but I was disappointed to see that none of the dishes included any serving utensils as we made it clear to the man that we sharing every dish. We also had to request our own forks and knifes as none were delivered with the food.
Later while we were eating the hostess asked if everything was alright, I didn't understand her and she was clearly annoyed that I asked her to repeat herself. I then asked for some grated cheese and she returned with a large bowl of cheese, clearly too large for a single person, again without any sort of serving utensil.
At one point in the meal the hostess, the waiter and the until now unseen bus boy came and asked if everything was OK, all within 10 seconds of each other. While I'm glad to see the staff looking out for us, the timing of this made the service appear clumsy and untrained.
As the plates were taken away, the man, who by now I recognized as the chef from his appearance on the video above, came and asked if we enjoyed the food. We told him we did and I asked about the meat in the gnocchi dish. When he revealed it was oxtail my wife was stunned that she loved it. I have eaten oxtail since I was a child, but it was one of those foods, like liver, kidney, tripe, etc that my wife would never try due to some squeamishness on her part. The chef laughed and said that was why he described the dish as having an Italian "meat" sauce. Too many folks are oxtail phobic until they try it.
Pizzeria del Corso easily has some of the best Italian food I've had in a long long time, but it needs to step up on the little things to become great. The front of the house service needs to pay attention to the details that could make Pizzeria del Corso a dining destination. On the tables were small votive candles, which remained unlit, as did the candle in the men's room. There is a tile missing on the men's room floor that was missing on my last visit over a month ago. The chef, needs to introduce himself to the customers and needs either a chefs coat or an apron. The stained t-shirt just doesn't cut it.
And finally, if Nino Coniglio's claim to fame is being a triathlon-winning member of the U.S. Pizza Team, he needs to be attracting customers with his acrobatic dough spinning! Don't loose the focus on the food, but put on the show! An empty dining room on Saturday night is not a good sign.
Even with these growing pains I'll be back and I'm recommending this place to my friends and to all of you here on the blog, because after all, you are all my friends!
BBQ Recipes: Jerk Chicken Skewers with Honey-Lime Cream
Here's another great recipe by Jamie Purviance from his cookbook, Weber's Way to Grill. Try this out. It was really really good.
Jerk Chicken Skewers with Honey-Lime Cream
Paste 1 habanero or Scotch bonnet chile pepper 1 cup lightly packed fresh cilantro leaves and tender stems 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil 4 scallions (white and light green parts only), roughly chopped 6 medium garlic cloves 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh ginger 2 tablespoons granulated sugar 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice 1 tablespoon ground allspice 2 teaspoons kosher salt 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
6 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, 6 to 8 ounces each
Sauce 1/2 cup sour cream 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lime zest 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil 2 teaspoons honey 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1. To avoid burning your skin, wear rubber or plastic gloves when you handle the chile. After handling the chile, do not touch your face or any other part of your body, as that might cause a burning sensation. Remove and discard the stem of the chile, then cut away and discard the hot whitish veins and seeds. Put the rest of the chile in the bowl of a food processor. Add the remaining paste ingredients and process until smooth.
2. Trim the chicken of any fat and remove the tenders. Cut the chicken lengthwise into even strips, 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick.
3. Place the chicken strips and tenders into a large, resealable plastic bag and spoon in the paste. Work the paste into the chicken, press out the air in the bag, and seal tightly. Place in the refrigerator and let marinate for 2 to 3 hours.
4. In a small bowl whisk the sauce ingredients. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Let the sauce stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes before serving. Prepare the grill for direct cooking over high heat (450° to 550°F).
5. Wearing rubber or plastic gloves, thread the chicken strips onto the skewers, being sure to keep each skewer well within the flesh of the chicken. If you don’t have rubber gloves, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly after this step.
6. Brush the cooking grates clean. Grill the skewers over direct high heat, with the lid closed as much as possible, until the meat is firm and the juices run clear, 6 to 8 minutes, turning once or twice. Serve warm with the sauce.
I haven't done a post on barbecue ingredients in a long long time but playing around with a new slather for ribs on July 3rd made me stop and think about one of my favorite ingredients: Worcestershire Sauce.
I was first introduced to this magic mop during my teen years. It was at my friend Dan's house and his father was in the kitchen preparing to grill some steaks. He took this huge slab of London Broil and began to smother it with Lea and Perrins Worcestershire Sauce. He then took a fork and stabbed the steak repeatedly, working the elixir deeper and deeper in to the muscle fiber of the meat. I asked John why he was desiccating the meat and he told me that his method produces "the best steaks in the world." Suspicious, I stepped back as he went upstairs to grill the meat. Yes, upstairs. The grill was on a roof deck accessed through my friend Dan's bedroom. Oh, if that deck could talk. But, I digress.
Dan's dad was right. Those were some outstanding steaks. I liked the flavor so much that to this day whenever I grill a London Broil you will find me dousing it with Lea and Perrins Worcestershire Sauce before it hits the fire. I've also learned to add it to soups, stews and sauces. Worcestershire Sauce has many uses and I keep finding new places to add it.
But what is so amazing about Worcestershire Sauce? Well, it's simply magical. According to the Lea and Perrins website, the invention of Worcestershire Sauce was almost an accident. "The story of Lea & Perrins® famous Worcestershire Sauce begins in the early 1800s, in the county of Worcester. Returning home from his travels in Bengal, Lord Sandys, a nobleman of the area, was eager to duplicate a recipe he'd acquired. On Lord Sandys's request, two chemists—John Lea and William Perrins made up the first batch of the sauce.
Lea and Perrins were not impressed with their initial results. The pair found the taste unpalatable, and simply left the jars in their cellar to gather dust. A few years later, they stumbled across them and decided to taste the contents again. To their delight, the aging process had turned it into a delicious, savory sauce."
And the rest they say is history. Now how does this relate to BBQ you may ask? Well, Worcestershire Sauce is rich and meaty tasting with a strong sense of umami. What is umami you may ask? Well, umami is a pleasant savoury taste imparted by glutamate, a type of amino acid, and ribonucleotides, including inosinate and guanylate, which occur naturally in many foods including meat, fish, vegetables and dairy products. As the taste of umami itself is subtle and blends well with other tastes to expand and round out flavors, most people don’t recognize umami when they encounter it, but it plays an important role making food taste delicious. And Worcestershire Sauce does just that.
My latest rib experiments involve using Worcestershire Sauce as a base for a rib slather. It adds a strong sense of "porkiness" to the final product. I can't' give you the recipe for the slather just yet, but try replacing any of your usual slathers with Worcestershire Sauce. Trust me, you'll be happy you did.
And no, this is not a paid endorsement. I just really like the stuff!
I'm a bad blogger. I'm an even worse "media" reporter. I was graciously given a "media" pass from the organizers of The Big Apple BBQ Block Party. I had plans to use it to get up into the faces of the pitmasters, take pictures of the food, sample it all and report back to you. Well, it sorta didn't happen.
I started out alright, but frankly I don't know if I'm cut out for the "media" position. I felt that I was intruding on the pitmasters on the day when they should be shining to the NYC masses and educating them all on the fine points of barbecue. And because of that, I didn't get up into the faces of the pitmasters, take pictures of the food, sample it all and report back to you.
But I did do some. Let me start off with a picture of one of the loveliest and most gracious people, I met that day. Just above this paragraph is Leslie aka "The Barbecue Princess,"from the Ubon's BBQ Company. Leslie made sure that I and my companion, Nancee of the Purple Turtle Catering Company were welcome and well fed at Ubon's trailer. Leslie even invited us back for an after event party that night.
Damn - that Ubon's was some good eating. The pulled pork sandwich was succulant and the meat very tender and flavorful. Now, I usually don't say this, but their "dipping" sauce made the sandwich. There were a lot of well done pulled pork sandwiches at the Block Party, but the sauce made the Ubon's sandwich shine in a very crowded galaxy. This is a very unique and infamous sauce. Buy some! I know I did.
This recipe comes to us from the fine folks at Weber. It's written by Jamie Purviance and you can find it in his cookbook, Weber's Charcoal Grilling™. Now I haven't tried this recipe yet, but I plan on trying it out soon.
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons paprika
4 teaspoons granulated garlic
4 teaspoons pure chile powder
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
4 racks baby back ribs, 2 to 2-1/2 pounds each 4 medium chunks of hickory wood, soaked in water for at least 30 minutes
3/4 cup apple juice
1/2 cup ketchup
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon molasses
1/2 teaspoon pure chile powder
1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup apple juice
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons barbecue sauce (from above)
1. In a small bowl mix the rub ingredients.
2. Using a meat thermometer or dull knife, slide the tip under the membrane covering the back of each rack of ribs. Lift and loosen the membrane until it breaks, then grab a corner of it with a paper towel and pull it off. Season the ribs all over, putting more of the rub on the meaty sides than the bone sides. Arrange the ribs in a rib rack, with all the ribs facing the same direction. Allow the ribs to stand at room temperature for about 30 minutes, or until the surface looks moist, before grilling.
3. Fill a chimney starter to the rim with charcoal and burn the charcoal until it is lightly covered with ash. Spread the charcoal in a tightly packed, single layer across one-third of the charcoal grate. Place a large disposable drip pan on the empty side of the charcoal grate. Fill the pan about halfway with warm water. Let the coals burn down to low heat (250° to 300°F). Leave all the vents open.
4. When the fire has burned down to low heat, drain 2 hickory chunks and place them on top of the charcoal. Put the cooking grate in place. Place the rib rack over indirect low heat (over the drip pan) as far from the coals as possible, with bone sides facing toward the charcoal. Close the lid. Close the top vent about halfway. Let the ribs cook and smoke for 1 hour. During that time, maintain the temperature between 250° to 300°F by opening and closing the top vents. Meanwhile, make the sauce and the mop.
5. In a small saucepan mix the barbecue sauce ingredients. Simmer for a few minutes over medium heat, and then remove the saucepan from the heat.
6. In another small saucepan mix the mop ingredients. Simmer for a few minutes over medium heat to melt the butter, and then remove the saucepan from the heat.
7. After the first hour of cooking, add 8 to 10 unlit charcoal briquettes and the remaining 2 hickory chunks (drained) to the fire. At the same time, lightly baste the ribs with some mop. Leaving the lid off for a few minutes while you baste the ribs will help the new briquettes to light. Close the lid and cook for another hour. During that time, maintain the temperature of the grill between 250° to 300°F by opening and closing the top vents.
8. After 2 hours of cooking, add 8 to 10 unlit charcoal briquettes to the fire. Remove the ribs from the rib rack, spread them out on clean work area and baste them thoroughly with some mop. Put them back in the rib rack, again all facing the same direction, but this time turned over so that the ends facing down earlier now face up. Also position any ribs that appear to be cooking faster than others toward the back of the rib rack, farther from the charcoal. Let the ribs cook for a third hour. During that time, maintain the temperature between 250° to 300°F by opening and closing the top vents.
9. After 3 hours of cooking, check if any rack is ready to come off the grill. They are done when the meat has shrunk back from most of the bones by 1/4 inch or more. When you lift a rack by picking up one end with tongs, the rack should bend in the middle and the meat should tear easily. If the meat does not tear easily, continue to cook the ribs. The total cooking time could be anywhere between 3 to 4 hours. Not all racks will cook in same amount of time. Lightly brush the cooked ribs with some sauce and, if desired for crispiness, cook them over direct heat for a few minutes. Transfer to a sheet pan and tightly cover with aluminum foil. Let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before serving. Serve warm with the remaining sauce on the side.
This came into my e-mail the other day and while it was originally created to honor Mexico's independence, this drink will work just as well as a salute to America's. It took me awhile to figure this concoction out, but it was worth it. Try this out on The Fourth. Viva America!
Mexican - American Flag Cocktail by Riazul
If you find yourself in south of Señor Frogs on Cinco de Mayo, the traditional drink recipe you’ll encounter is the Coctel Bandera Mexicana. Representing the colors of the namesake Mexican Flag, the cocktail trio includes blanco tequila (white), sangrita (red) and lime juice (green) in three separate “caballitos”(Basically brandy snifters)... sipped alternately.
Riazul Premium Tequila, whose heritage dates back to the Mexican War of Independence, would like to toast its northern neighbors on their Independence Day with an adapted flag cocktail… Bandera Americana: the American Flag cocktail.
The trio includes a small glass of Riazul Premium Silver followed by a traditional sangrita based on a generations-old Jalisco recipe, then chased with a blue margarita. Raise the flag to this tequila trifecta!
(1 Lt, approximately)
2 lb Raw tomatoes, peeled and seeded
3 Freshly squezeed orange juice
2 Freshly squezees lime juice
1 Small onion, chopped
1 teaspoon of sugar
Salt to taste
6 Serrano peppers (fresh-raw)
White — Tequila:
1 bottle of Riazul Premium Silver (blanco)
Blue — Margarita:
2 oz Riazul Silver
1 oz Blue Curacao
½ oz Triple Sec
1 oz lime juice
½ tsp simple sugar
Directions: Mix all of the sangrita ingredients together and serve cold in caballitos with corresponding shots of tequila.
Rub rims of cocktail glasses with lime juice. Dip rim in coarse salt. Shake tequila, blue curacao, triple sec, simple sugar and lime juice with ice, strain into the salt-rimmed glasses, and serve.