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BBQ Brian

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Everything posted by BBQ Brian

  1. I got the 220 with the collapsable stand. I wanna hear about the clove/saffron recipe... how'd that turn out? Thanks Brian
  2. Just finished grilling pork burgers on the Baby Q - cool! Recipe is real simple: ground pork and three tablespoons of my basic bbq rub - notes of cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice - Apple Butter bbq sauce on the side - of course. Makes for a nice burger and the Baby Q did a fine job doing it's thing. Wa hooo Brian
  3. I just added to the gear... I bought a Weber Baby Q on Friday. I was tired of hauling around my deck grill to do cooking classes and demo's - ugh. The Baby Q is small, light and still stands up to the expectations that you want from Weber. Anyone else using a Weber Q as a portable grill? Brian
  4. Here's a photo of the musk ox. The recipe we used was a pomegranate and mint marinade thus the nice carmelization on the outside. And Arne commented about the use of Weber Smoky Mountain cookers.... well I didn't get the chance to count how many teams are using them but it is at least half while some have home-made things and the remainder have the big trailer kettles. I thought this wall of kettles was cool: Cheers, Brian
  5. (grumble, grumble) oh raggle, fraggle, managle, baggle, fraggle.... Well, um, a first for us I gotta admit.... middle of the pack in everything where we are usually in the top 6 - there were 28 teams this year. I, as well as the rest of our cooking team, had a fantastic time cooking musk ox which was the sponsored category for "Chef's Choice". I'll post pictures soon on that one as well. Each team that entered that category was provided a french rack of musk ox and long story short, it was like a cross of bison and beef. Rather lean but very tasty and not gamey at all as many expect. We seared it on high heat and went for a perfect medium-rare. Again, pictures soon. Dissappointingly, the coordinators of the competition do not provide full scoring sheets to know where you placed in that category. Thanks for the question and yes we did qualify for the Kansas City Royal this year with the win in Trail. An invite to the Jack Daniels Invitational is still to be determined. Brian
  6. A couple of pics of the ribs... I thought they were good - considering I ate almost a whole rack! But the input was appreciated... Brian
  7. I was smoking ribs this past weekend testing recipes. I started off with two full sides of ribs and I split them into two full racks each (cut along the cartilage separating the breast plate from the bones). Half of them went into a smoker (Weber) and half went onto my gas grill with indirect cooking. Both had the same slather, rub, baste and sauce. Interstingly, my guests found that they liked the grill roasted ribs for flavor over the smoked ones... hmmm? It wasn't necessarily that they didn't like the smoke flavor but they found that there was more diverse flavor from the grill roasted ones... interesting feedback for me. I'll try to post pictures soon. Brian
  8. The annual EAT Vancouver trade show is on this weekend (May 25-27,2007) - who's going? What are you looking for? Who do you want to see on stage? Or, if you already went, what was cool? Brian
  9. I was in Gasland in White Rock on Friday and they had a nice stash of coal as well as Johnstones in North Van. The new location of Johnstones is just off Broadway in Port Coquitlam near the Mary Hill Bypass. Anyone smoking Tri-tip's (beef)? If so, where are you getting meat? Brian
  10. I ditched the paper in the base of the chimney for a portable butane stove... like the ones you see at Asian markets and are about $20. Place the chimney right on it and fire it up... less smoke than the burnt paper and well screaming chimney in under 10 minutes. The downside however is I completely burnt out my camping stove now. Oh well... Thanks for the comment about the sauce - we finally got it together and launched it in stores last month - currently about 40 stores in the lower mainland with more to come. I never would of though about Army and Navy re: sources for bbq stuff... what else is in their bbq aisle? And Par, since you brought it up, I like using a discarded floor matt under our kettles - like the ones you see at an office building or an apartment - rubber backed carpet front... perfect for dropping grease, burning coal and whatever else.... its already a discarded item. I love the grilled rice idea from Paul - I'll add that to the "gotta try" list. As for making your own charcoal, um, holy over-the-top batman! Let me guess, no store bought sauces either? Hee hee Brian
  11. I have never smoked with Plum but my track of thought is ANY hardwood from a fruit tree is worth the try. So when's the test? Lump? Um, I find it's better to control heat especially in a Weber smoker... if you loose heat, open a vent a touch and wham, there it is back again. Briquettes seem to take longer to re-ignite. Or is that simply just me? By the same token, I used Kingsford last week, because I was in a pinch, and I don't want to be too far out of line, but the product is crap compared to other types of charcoal. NamChar? Well, it seems to have run into a few challenges in getting to the market on a consistent basis... I too have run out of sources, at least inexpensive ones... I love the charcoal links - those are fantastic! My plan for the weekend involves teaching my longtime buddy who's visiting from Montreal how to properly cook ribs... from start to finish 7 hours. Guess what? It might involve a bevvie. Cheers, Brian
  12. Oh my... now that's a story. Back up plan - hot dogs or Bella Pizza?
  13. Nice Neil, nice... I learnt from the master on which end of the tongs to use too. So far I seem to have the right end (plus a few trophies). Charcoal sources? Keith - all depends on where you are... the national chains carry coal but typically briquettes - lump is that much harder to find. Overwaitea had it (Hard Coal) in stock recently while I've seen lump in CDN Tire in Trail, BC but not in the lower mainland... go figure. Best bet though is a good bbq outlet that sells hardware - they'll likely have the better quality stuff. Brian
  14. I thought I'd try to start a variation for a thread - all about bbq. I know from a question here and there on eGullet that there are indeed enthusiastic grillers in Western Canada but there are also zealous smokers as well. So here are a few questions to start things off: - what's your favorite dish to grill? - do you know how to tell if your steak is done (without cutting it all up on the grill)? - do you use charcoal or stick to the "easier-to-use" gas? - sources for charcoal, woods and cookers - what do you want to know how to do better on your grill? - what secret ingredient do you like to play with while outdoor cooking? - and if you are willing, what did you screw up for your guests? Let's see if we can be resourceful and let people learn by our mistakes or by the same token, share with others what works well. Have at it.... Brian
  15. Yeah - once bit, hard to forget something as tasty as good piroshky (pirogie). On my list of places is: Red Square in Burnaby - great bakery too Red Square Web Site Brian
  16. A couple of months ago I contacted a molasses manufacturer to help clarify flavor and terminology... they educated me that "fancy" or even better "extra fancy" molasses has teh sweetest and best flavor. Blackstrap on the other hand is darker, more refined (think of olive oil and first presing, second pressing etc and you'll get the picture) and more bitter. To accomodate the bitterness from blackstrap they advised adding corn syrup or as you may describe golden syrup. As for treacle, sorry, that's a new term to me. Cheers, Brian
  17. BBQ Brian

    Turkey Brining

    Darin, Good question... the essense of the salt is to create a solution (the brine) that has a higher density than the product it is immersed in it (i.e., a turkey). By immersing it and allowing it to adjust to the pressure around it, the solution "infuses" into the bird. You can use juices (be careful here though - watch the acid content and the type of juices) or simply alot of frangrant herbs, spices or vegetables (i.e., onions) but minimize or eliminate the salt content. Without trying it and measuring the results, my guess is your bird will not take on as much fluid as the less diluted brine, but it will and can be as tasty. Brian
  18. BBQ Brian

    Turkey Brining

    ... and the neverending question - how long to brine? Well, my benchmark is one hour per pound of meat. So far, all the experiments I've done indicate that works well. Here's the blog: House of Q - Practising Brines With Turkey Brian
  19. There's absolutely no logical reason why this whole packaging concept gives me the willies... but it does. Oh my.
  20. Well Arne, yes... that's usually the method however here and again and when the smoker is at home and I'm in Edmonton I gotta resort to the traditional oven method. (More like I need to remind myself that the big box-like device in the kitchen does not need wood or charcoal - just turn the knob to 350F - somehow it goes to that temperature - imagine that - no charcoal?) Same juicy bird but without the lovely yummy smoke flavor. Brian
  21. Karole, I've cooked many-a-bird and don't really understand the conception that turkey is a week-long affair (by the way, I never ever exagerate). It's really not that challenging. Here's my thoughts when it comes to the bird itself: - don't worry about birds that are injected with this or that or are butter-basted - not worth the money in my opinion - Grade A or Premium grade birds are fine and in my case, utility are perfect - free range or organic are nice if you can afford the exponential increase in cost - but usually not necessarily worth it Here's Brians cooking method: - buy a bird - fresh or frozen - plan on 1 lb per person (yield is about 50-60%) - defrost it if frozen and then brine it in 1 cup salt (kosher or rock) and 1 cup sugar with 4 L of really cold water - add ice and refridgerate - brine for the same time at the weight of your bird - 20 lb bird = 20 hours - rinse and cook at 350F uncovered until breast temp is 170F (usually about 3 hours) - rest 20 minutes - carve and don't forget to wear your bib - the juices are wonderful Here's a link to my blog and practising with brines: House of Q Blog - Turkey Brine Good luck and once you've cooked your bird, we want pictures! Brian
  22. The story continues.... Vancouver Metro ran an article today talking 'bout the ongoing labor shortage in the hospitality industry and referenced the BC Restaurant Association's survey on the topic: BCRFA Survey Results Metro News Feenie Article For me this is an interesting topic but is not unusual from other industries (i.e., construction trades). However identifying that there is a shortage is one element, knowing that schools can pump out a number of anxious "trainees" is another but when it comes down to it can restaurant owners make enough profit while having to increase pay to the new staff? Conundrum. Resolution? Maybe what you see in Calgary is the short term effect - cycled closures of restaurants simply because there isn't enough staff to operate. Other resolutions? Brian
  23. In my background I've got it deeply entrenched that Octoberfest includes dancing the waltz and polka's however, I am unsure many even know how to do that anymore. That alone may contribute to the lack of appeal to the oom pah pah bands (by the way, try and find a German/Swiss/Austrian band). The beer on the other hand I'm sure no one minds! Brian
  24. My parents send me regularly the food sections from the Edmonton Journal and I have to admit, they are far more appealing than the local news rag(s) in the Vancouver market. But then again, what are we looking to see for content? Simply better photo's? Not necessarily so... just cooking ideas? I do tend to peruse Simi Sara's daily recipe in the daily freebie rags - that's interesting to me. But how about you? Brian
  25. Just to clarify... I see an interest in the facts rather than regional politics for the forum. There are a mix of home cooks on eGullet as well as trade and some might know hygiene in one environment but have no idea in another. By the same token, I believe there is an interest in educating on the topic overall. Brian
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