Category Archives: Barbecue

Barbecue Burnt Ends

I first fell in love with barbecue when living in Texas. It was probably the first time I really had that perfect smell of what barbecue should have smelled like when eating at Sonny Bryan’s. The chopping away at ribs, brisket, or pork shoulder, piled onto a paper lined tray and served with legitimate sides, let’s just say I was in heaven. As we all know Texas is not the only place for barbecue, and as I have grown older (sigh), I’ve experimented enough with my smoker, and coming up with sauces to come up with some really great barbecue.

But there is one thing that I really love when making barbecue, and that is burnt ends, and let’s just say that doesn’t happen all that often. I usually smoke things like fish, ribs, and pork shoulder, but burnt ends are the golden nuggets of barbecue in my opinion, and brisket is that source. With that said, I set out to smoke a brisket and get some burnt ends going.

Barbecue Burnt Ends

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 4 lb beef brisket
  • salt
  • cracked black pepper
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 cup of your favorite barbecue sauce
  • your favorite wood for smoking, I used cherry, soaked in water for at least 3 hours
  • smoker

There are barbecue purists out there when it comes to brisket, among other items, but I went the route of seasoning overnight, and injecting right before I placed my brisket on my smoker. It worked really well, but I will let you decide.

Start by adding a generous amount of salt and pepper all over the brisket. Place into a sealable bag and place in the refrigerator overnight. The following day, remove your brisket and let it come up to room temperature.

During this time, add the beef stock and garlic powder to a sauce pan, and mix. Set one cup of the mixture to the side to be used later.

Inject the brisket in a variety of places. Let it rest, and prepare your smoker.

Once your smoker has come to temperature, add in a few chunks of your cherry wood, and place your brisket into the smoker. Cover, and take a rest. Add a bit more wood about 45 minutes into the cooking process. I like to smoke early and let it cook on low the remainder of the time. Adding smoke towards the end gets a little bitter in my opinion.

burnt-ends-ingredients

Smoke the brisket until you have an internal temperature of 170 degrees, then remove and let it rest in a baking dish.

During this time, add the remaining beef stock mixture, along with the barbecue sauce to a large pot, and give this a good mix. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Once the brisket has cooked, but into bite sized cubes and toss into the sauce mixture. Cover and place into the preheated oven for one hour.

Dig in. These burnt ends not only had a great smoke flavor but they were even more caramelized from the barbecue sauce mixture. So good, and so simple, you will probably want to repeat this process the following day. They go quick! I hope you enjoy.

Barbecue Burnt Ends
Author: 
Recipe type: Barbecue
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • 4 lb beef brisket
  • salt
  • cracked black pepper
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 cup of your favorite barbecue sauce
  • your favorite wood for smoking, I used cherry, soaked in water for at least 3 hours
  • smoker
Instructions
  1. There are barbecue purists out there when it comes to brisket, among other items, but I went the route of seasoning overnight, and injecting right before I placed my brisket on my smoker. It worked really well, but I will let you decide.
  2. Start by adding a generous amount of salt and pepper all over the brisket. Place into a sealable bag and place in the refrigerator overnight. The following day, remove your brisket and let it come up to room temperature.
  3. During this time, add the beef stock and garlic powder to a sauce pan, and mix. Set one cup of the mixture to the side to be used later.
  4. Inject the brisket in a variety of places. Let it rest, and prepare your smoker.
  5. Once your smoker has come to temperature, add in a few chunks of your cherry wood, and place your brisket into the smoker. Cover, and take a rest. Add a bit more wood about 45 minutes into the cooking process. I like to smoke early and let it cook on low the remainder of the time. Adding smoke towards the end gets a little bitter in my opinion.
  6. Smoke the brisket until you have an internal temperature of 170 degrees, then remove and let it rest in a baking dish.
  7. During this time, add the remaining beef stock mixture, along with the barbecue sauce to a large pot, and give this a good mix. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  8. Once the brisket has cooked, but into bite sized cubes and toss into the sauce mixture. Cover and place into the preheated oven for one hour.
  9. Dig in. These burnt ends not only had a great smoke flavor but they were even more caramelized from the barbecue sauce mixture. So good, and so simple, you will probably want to repeat this process the following day. They go quick! I hope you enjoy.

 

Chicken Satay

If you have never tried chicken satay, well let me just say you are going to love it. I came up with this only because my kids love Filipino barbecue, and well, I wanted them to explore and try different things. My goal actually was to get my oldest to try the satay sauce that I knew my wife would fall in love with. It’s a peanut butter based sauce, but one that is so good it will have you putting it on bread, and whatever else you can think of. Satay in its general state is basically any type of meat, threaded on a bamboo skewer, and grilled over wood or charcoal. What is not to love about that right?

This chicken satay was so good my entire family devoured it, and let’s just say I had to pull my wife away from the sauce. Again, the sauce is that good.

Chicken Satay

Lets get started.

Ingredients for Satay Sauce:

  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 3/4 cup of creamy peanut butter
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tbsp red curry paste
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar

Ingredients for Chicken Satay

  • bamboo skewers, soaked in water for at least 30 minutes
  • 2 lbs chicken strips, cut into large bite sized pieces
  • 1/4 cup of lemongrass, minced
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced into a paste
  • 1/2 tbsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp dried tumeric
  • 3 tbsp fish sauce
  • 3 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 3 tbsp canola oil

Start by making the sauce. You can do this ahead of time. Add the satay sauce ingredients to a sauce pan, and simmer, stirring along the way. Once everything is combined, and forms a sauce, take it off of the burner and set it aside. Let cool, and store in a covered container in the refrigerator.

Next get started on your chicken. Add all of the chicken satay ingredients, excluding the chicken and skewers, and mix well. Add in the chicken, and give a good mix. If you are using your hands, be careful as the dark soy sauce is very dark, and might stain your hands. Cover with plastic wrap and let the chicken marinate in the refrigerator overnight, or at least three hours.

How to make chicken satay with peanut dipping sauce

Now lets get ready to grill the chicken. I like to use charcoal when making chicken satay as the coals get super hot while at the same time impacting a bit of smokey flavor into the chicken.

Take the chicken out of the refrigerator about 30 minutes prior to grilling. You will want to take some of that chill away from the chicken and allow for a more even cooking process.

Thread the chicken onto the skewers, about six pieces per skewer. Repeat with all chicken.

Heat your coals and clean the top grate of your grill with a bit of oil. It is always important, in my opinion, to have a clean grate.

Chicken Satay Recipe

Add the skewers onto the heated grill, and cook for a few minutes, allowing the chicken to get a nice sear, however preventing it from burning. If the chicken begins to flame up, cover the grill. After a few minutes, flip the chicken, and cook another few minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.

To serve, places the skewers onto a serving platter, and dig in. My boys eat directly off of the stick, and I love that as well.

Warm the satay sauce, and serve on the side, or drizzle over the chicken. Again, you are going to love this chicken satay. The chicken itself is super awesome and is loaded with tons of flavor, however when you dip it into the peanut sauce, well, you enter a whole new world. The peanut sauce is a bit salty, but is balanced by this awesome spiciness and sweetness from the peanut butter. It’s an amazing recipe and I’m certain you will fall in love with it as much as my family did. I hope you enjoy!

Chicken Satay
Author: 
Recipe type: Chicken
Cuisine: Thai, Indonesian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
Ingredients
  • Ingredients for Satay Sauce:
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • ¾ cup of creamy peanut butter
  • ¾ cup water
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tbsp red curry paste
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • Ingredients for Chicken Satay
  • bamboo skewers, soaked in water for at least 30 minutes
  • 2 lbs chicken strips, cut into large bite sized pieces
  • ¼ cup of lemongrass, minced
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger, minced into a paste
  • ½ tbsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp dried tumeric
  • 3 tbsp fish sauce
  • 3 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp honey
  • 3 tbsp canola oil
Instructions
  1. Start by making the sauce. You can do this ahead of time. Add the satay sauce ingredients to a sauce pan, and simmer, stirring along the way. Once everything is combined, and forms a sauce, take it off of the burner and set it aside. Let cool, and store in a covered container in the refrigerator.
  2. Next get started on your chicken. Add all of the chicken satay ingredients, excluding the chicken and skewers, and mix well. Add in the chicken, and give a good mix. If you are using your hands, be careful as the dark soy sauce is very dark, and might stain your hands. Cover with plastic wrap and let the chicken marinate in the refrigerator overnight, or at least three hours.
  3. Now lets get ready to grill the chicken. I like to use charcoal when making chicken satay as the coals get super hot while at the same time impacting a bit of smokey flavor into the chicken.
  4. Take the chicken out of the refrigerator about 30 minutes prior to grilling. You will want to take some of that chill away from the chicken and allow for a more even cooking process.
  5. Thread the chicken onto the skewers, about six pieces per skewer. Repeat with all chicken.
  6. Heat your coals and clean the top grate of your grill with a bit of oil. It is always important, in my opinion, to have a clean grate.
  7. Add the skewers onto the heated grill, and cook for a few minutes, allowing the chicken to get a nice sear, however preventing it from burning. If the chicken begins to flame up, cover the grill. After a few minutes, flip the chicken, and cook another few minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.
  8. To serve, places the skewers onto a serving platter, and dig in. My boys eat directly off of the stick, and I love that as well.
  9. Warm the satay sauce, and serve on the side, or drizzle over the chicken. Again, you are going to love this chicken satay. The chicken itself is super awesome and is loaded with tons of flavor, however when you dip it into the peanut sauce, well, you enter a whole new world. The peanut sauce is a bit salty, but is balanced by this awesome spiciness and sweetness from the peanut butter.

 

Smoked BBQ Chicken Wings

My oldest kid has become a true fan of chicken wings. I’m OK with that, only because he has been a picky eater for the majority of his childhood, so when he wants something that has a bone in it of all things, I’m cool. Normally during a busy week we might order chicken wings because after a long day at work, I really don’t want to come home and heat up a bunch of oil, trim chicken, and fry it. I just don’t. When we do order out though, this kid will take on the chicken wings, not six, but probably ten to twelve of them. To me, that’s impressive for a kid his age, and it’s always a sign that he is growing, not only in size but age. He’s a great kid, and I love him. So with that said, when I do have a bit of time to slow down, I like to focus on low and slow food on the smoker.

Smoked BBQ Chicken Wings

There were a couple of reasons why I wanted to make these chicken wings for the kid; one is that my neighbor hooked me up with a ton of cherry wood, which I totally appreciated, and I needed to make a batch of my spice rub. I’ve smoked chicken breasts in the past, but never have I smoked chicken wings, so I was up for a challenge of not over smoking the chicken wings, while at the same time trying to impart a great cherry wood smoked flavor, while keeping the chicken moist. I think I won on that front.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 24 chicken wingettes, wing tips removed, drumette is optional
  • 1/2 cup of your favorite BBQ spice rub
  • 2 cups, approximately cherry wood, soaked
  • 1/2 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce
  • Smoker

Start by seasoning your wingettes with the spice rub. Massage it all over the chicken, then place in a plastic, sealable bag, and let it marinate overnight in the refrigerator.

The following day, get your smoker ready. Cover the cherry wood chunks with water, and let them soak for a good hour or so.

Prepare your smoker however you do that. I use a charcoal chimney to light the charcoal, then pour that into the base of a drum based smoker, using a water pan in the middle, then grill grates on top, only to cover and trap on the smoke.

How to make smoked chicken wings

Once the coals are heated up, in my case, dump them into the bottom. Top with a handful of the soaked cherry wood, I added a couple of dry chunks as well, then assemble the rest of the smoker and lay the marinated chicken wings onto the grill grate. Cover and walk away. Or, stay there and begin to smell how amazing that smoke smells, then walk away.

Smoke the chicken wings for about one hour, then carefully flip them over, and let them smoke for another hour, then remove from the smoker and onto a baking sheet. Once you remove them, let them rest, then brush on your favorite barbecue sauce. Place in a preheated 275 degree oven to finish cooking for about 20 minutes. The sauce will get nice and caramelized, almost sticky, and very delicious.

Smoked BBQ Chicken Wings Recipe

Remove, plate, and serve. The result are truly great smoked BBQ chicken wings. They were nicely glazed, and the meat had that great pink color from the smoking process that you only get from the smoke ring. This pink was through and through but not overwhelmed by the amount of smoke. Let’s just say my kids love them and so did I. If you have time and want to go low and slow on the smoker, give these a shot.

Smoked BBQ Chicken Wings
Author: 
Recipe type: American BBQ
Cuisine: BBQ
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
 
Ingredients
  • 24 chicken wingettes, wing tips removed, drumette is optional
  • ½ cup of your favorite BBQ spice rub
  • 2 cups, approximately cherry wood, soaked
  • ½ cup of your favorite BBQ sauce
  • Smoker
Instructions
  1. Start by seasoning your wingettes with the spice rub. Massage it all over the chicken, then place in a plastic, sealable bag, and let it marinate overnight in the refrigerator.
  2. The following day, get your smoker ready. Cover the cherry wood chunks with water, and let them soak for a good hour or so.
  3. Prepare your smoker however you do that. I use a charcoal chimney to light the charcoal, then pour that into the base of a drum based smoker, using a water pan in the middle, then grill grates on top, only to cover and trap on the smoke.
  4. Once the coals are heated up, in my case, dump them into the bottom. Top with a handful of the soaked cherry wood, I added a couple of dry chunks as well, then assemble the rest of the smoker and lay the marinated chicken wings onto the grill grate. Cover and walk away. Or, stay there and begin to smell how amazing that smoke smells, then walk away.
  5. Smoke the chicken wings for about one hour, then carefully flip them over, and let them smoke for another hour, then remove from the smoker and onto a baking sheet. Once you remove them, let them rest, then brush on your favorite barbecue sauce. Place in a preheated 275 degree oven to finish cooking for about 20 minutes. The sauce will get nice and caramelized, almost sticky, and very delicious.
  6. Remove, plate, and serve. The result are truly great smoked BBQ chicken wings. They were nicely glazed, and the meat had that great pink color from the smoking process that you only get from the smoke ring. This pink was through and through but not overwhelmed by the amount of smoke. Let's just say my kids love them and so did I. If you have time and want to go low and slow on the smoker, give these a shot.

 

Homemade Smoked Sausage

If there is one thing that one of my boys attaches quickly to in the kitchen is eating. Just kidding, well, not really. He has always attached himself to assisting me in making homemade sausages. Let me say that making homemade sausage is not only fun, but it can get a bit messy. Grinding the meat, mixing it, and dabbling in casing, well, let’s just say not too many in the home kitchen get overly excited about it. I do, and so does my son, and that always makes for teachable moments, and a bit of bonding, and one can never go wrong with those.

Homemade Smoked Sausage Recipe

A couple of my favorite homemade sausages to make are a chicken feta sausage that my wife really loves, and a Thai sausage that has some great heat to it, however this time I wanted to make a polish style sausage, and put them on the smoker. These sausages were dynamite, and let’s just say my son who loves sausages gave the homemade smoked sausage a thumbs up.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 5 lbs of boneless pork shoulder, cut into large cubes
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds, lightly crushed
  • 2 tbsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tbsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 tbsp dried marjoram
  • 1 tsp pink salt for curing
  • 1 cup of ice water
  • hog casings, soaked and cleaned in cold water
  • sausage stuffer
  • 2 cups apple wood chips, soaked in water for 1 hour

Begin by grinding your meat. I use a KitchenAid with the grinding accessory for this job. It works well. Let the meat fall into a large mixing bowl.

Mix all of the seasonings, and set aside.

When the meat is ground, sprinkle the seasoning over the meat, pour in the ice cold water, and get in there with your hands, working quickly, and make sure everything is mixed and incorporated.

How to make homemade sausage

Add the casing to your sausage stuffer. Again, I use my KitchenAid for this and it works well. Work in small batches and begin stuffing the sausage, making sure they are not too tight or the casing might burst. This is where two people, in my opinion, really helps. Continue stuffing until all of the meat is stuffed into the casing. Give a bit more slack on the end of the casing, then tie the end into a knot.

Now determine the length you want for each link, and gently press into the casing and begin to twist. Continue to twist a couple of times. Repeat for each link.

When you are ready, slice in the middle of the twisted casing to remove a link.

Feel free to vacuum seal what you will not use so that you can use the sausage in the future. It’s five pounds of sausage, so it should go a long way unless you are having a party that same day.

Next, prepare your smoker. If you do not want to add smoke to the sausage, these are now perfectly fine to grill or sear in a pan.

Light your charcoal chimney with a lot of charcoal. Once the coals are heated, add them to your smoker. Add the water/drip pan into the middle, then the top rack. Just to let you know, I have a vertical smoker. It’s cheap and does a good job.

Add the soaked wood chips to the hot charcoal, close the vents, then add your sausage links to the top grate. Cover, and walk away.

Smoke the sausages, turning once along the process, about 2 hours in, until the casings are nice and smoked, and the internal temperature runs around 155. Once smoked, let them rest for a couple of hours on a plate in your kitchen, then slice and serve.

When you slice into these homemade sausages, you get the great smoke ring, and then comes that great garlic and peppery flavor from the seasoning. You can tell my kid was super proud and always realizes that a bit of time, and hard work pays off when making great food. I hope you enjoy.