[gardeners] Oh, Lord; here we go with Barbeque! was Re: Barbeque, was Re: [

Catharine Vinson (gardeners@globalgarden.com)
Thu, 2 Jul 1998 19:05:53 +0000

Harry wrote:

> Texas gets the sauce right, but they have this morbid
> insistence on putting it on beef.  

It ain't what you put *on* the meat that makes it barbeque....it's how you 
cook it, IMHO (although yellow, mustard-based sauce is an abomination).

As you know, Texians are opinionated <bg>. On the subject of barbeque we 
come down on the side of  downright obnoxious. I'm no exception <gosh, 
what a surprise!).

Proper barbeque calls for the following:

a) DEAD ANIMALS -  (beef BRISKET, pork RIBS, chicken, sausage, 
cabrito generally being favored, with Brisket forming the basis of the 

b) A PROPER PIT - You can't buy 'em at the ACE hardware store. Not even at 
the Wal-Mart (well, I've seen a couple that could do in a pinch). Best pit 
is one you build. First you get yourself some bricks, some stone or such. 
And then you get to it. Build up a "coffin" about 15 feet long and 4 feet 
high. Suspend rack about 3 ft. off the ground. Add lid that you raise and 
lower with pulley and chains. Fiddle to get the dang thing to draw right. 
Fiddle some more. Keep fiddling while you let all your friends put in 
their two cents worth on How to Build a Pit. Have lots of beer and 
bandaids on hand to cool things off.

c) FIREWOOD - Massive stacks of well-cured hardwood logs and kindling, 
including oak, mesquite. NO PINE, for god's sake!! 

d) IGNITION DEVICE - a match.

e) THE RUB - Top secret. No two cooks are the same. (Hint: the rub is a 
dry one most often).

f) THE COOK - The high priest of the pit. Word is law. Attitude to job is 
one of bliss, reverence and devotion.

g) TIME - The longer the better. Good barbeque takes a l-o-n-g time and a 
s-l-o-w fire.

h) SAUCE - Optional and served ON THE SIDE!!!!! The purist eats his/her 
brisket naked as it comes from the pit. He/she doesn't drown it with 
sauces. It needs nothing. It is perfection. It is Barbeque.

Catharine, who finds her eyes filling with tears at the thought of one of 
Ken Hall's luncheon plates: brisket, ribs and choice of sides. Amen.