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

George Shirley (
Thu, 02 Jul 1998 20:46:17

At 07:05 PM 7/2/98 +0000, you wrote:
>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'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.

You got it mostly right. With the downsizing of the erl bidness most pits
are being made out of 35 to 54 inch steel pipe. One piece stands on end for
a firebox and the other runs horizontal. Counter balanced lid, couple of
smoke stacks at one end, air register where the wood goes. Mount the whole
thing on a trailer, dual axle of course, Baby Moon hubcaps on the trailer
tires, white walls if you're wealthy, pull it behind a Cowboy Cadillac
(one-ton dually pickemup truck, either stretch cab or crew cab), take the
whole deal to a friends house or to a lake or river, spend the whole night
barbecuing and drinking beer, all the next day eating barbecue, tater salad
(slaw's for sissies), drinking beer, corn on the cob, chiles, drinking
beer. Well, you get the idea.

>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.
George, thinking about going to Robstown for some bbq.