The single best barbecue experience I had in 2019 was at Blood Bros. BBQ in Houston. That's saying a lot given that I also had my first taste of many other establishments churning out top tier smoked meats—Truth BBQ, B's Cracklin' BBQ, Grady's Barbecue, Sam Jones BBQ, and Buxton Hall. What was so exhilarating about Blood Bros. to me was not just the quality, and every meat I tried was stellar, but the effortless melding of barbecue with other cultural influences. In general, this is what makes eating in Houston more exciting than most places, the melting pot of cultural inputs ends up outputting food in a manner that doesn't feel forced—it's not “Fusion” food, it's just their food. A group of Vietnamese friends started up Blood Bros., and the menu feels like an organic a sampling of everything they grew up eating in Houston that resonated with them. It's mostly Asian, but not strictly so, and sometimes Vietnamese, and other times not, like Thai sticky peanut butter ribs, which was one of the standout meats for me. During this quarantine period I was having very fond memories of those ribs and decided to make my own recipe for them as an ode to Blood Bros.
I have no idea what the Blood Bros. recipe is for these, I just knew that they blended Thai cuisine and American barbecue really well and didn't hold back on the spicy. So I used my personal knowledge of each cuisine to devise a recipe I thought would do the inspiration justice. It started with some homemade red curry paste, and I highly recommend making this stuff at home in a mortar and pestle for maximum flavor. I used the curry paste as the base of a wet rub, to which I added fish sauce, brown sugar, salt, and black pepper.
I then slathered the sauce all over a rack of St, Louis cut spare ribs. They definitely looked a lot different than the dry rubbed ribs I'm used to making, but I figured different is the right development path for this recipe.
Next I placed the ribs in the smoker that I had running at 225°F. I used a couple fist-sized chucks of apple wood to impart a light smokiness. I chose a more mellow wood because I thought without the heavy spice layer of normal barbecue, heartier woods could end up tasting a little too overpowering in this scenario.
Once the ribs were going, I went back inside and started on the sauce, which is the heart of the flavor of this recipe. I looked at my normal barbecue sauce recipe and started subbing out ingredients and changing quantities in a way that would make it taste like a melding of American barbecue sauce with Thai flavors. This began by swapping onions for shallots, which I sautéed and then added in a larger the usual amount of garlic along with ginger and Thai bird's eye chilies.
Then I whisked in the foundational ketchup with a fair amount of creamy peanut butter, providing the ribs namesake flavor and sticky character. To that I added rice vinegar, brown sugar, soy sauce, red curry paste, fish sauce, and lime juice. After cooking for bit to meld the flavors and thicken slightly, I seasoned the sauce with salt and pepper but something felt like it was missing. I was racking my brain on what to add to give the boost of flavor I thought was absent, and finally I had an idea—I added in a squeeze of tamarind concentrate and that ended up providing the perfect sour note and little extra savoriness to make the sauce feel complete.
With the usual barbecue ribs, the exterior starts to darken and turn overly brown or black after a few hours of smoking, which is why I spritz the ribs with a liquid—normally apple juice—when they hit a good mahogany color to avoid overcooking the rub. I had originally planned on doing that here, using rice vinegar to spray them down, but the ribs didn't turn a deep red until right at the end of cooking, so it wasn't needed at all.
At the same time they started to look beautiful, they were also almost done, which I tested by lifting one end of the rack with a pair of tongs and judging how they bent. So with just 30 minutes or so of smoking time left, I applied the sauce generously, wanting that thick and sticky sauce coating I experienced at Blood Bros.
And after the last stint in the smoker, they were done and looked good, but they were about to get a whole lot prettier thanks to a garnishing of cilantro, peanuts, and pepper slices.
By now my mouth was watering and my anticipation for a taste of these ribs had grown even more, making the obligatory photo shoot before eating feel even longer than it normally does. Upon that first bite, I was brought back to my memories of how excited I felt eating each dish at Blood Bros. While the ribs tasted familiar, they were not an exact copycat recipe, which in a way I preferred because they were more representative of my experience and skills, even if the original concept was not my own. They still had the seamless blend of cuisines going on for them, with the smoked pork and complex, layered sauce making them solidly American barbecue, but the overall flavors more reminiscent of Thai cuisine with a strong heat backed up by acidity and complimentary herbal notes. The peanut butter in the sauce also pushed them further in the Thai direction while also delivering the “sticky” promise of the recipe title. I can't wait to go back to Blood Bros. and try even more things, but the only problem is that there's so much great and utterly unique food in Houston that returning to the same place twice is not something I do often with all there is to try there that really can't be had, or at least doesn't feel the same, anywhere else.
Published on Thu May 7, 2020 by Joshua Bousel
Thai-influenced Sticky Peanut Butter Ribs Yield 4 servings Prep 30 Minutes Cook 6 Hours Total 6 Hours 30 Minutes Ingredients For the Sauce 1/2 cup finely minced shallots 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh garlic 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh ginger 3 Thai bird's eye chilies, thinly sliced 1 cup ketchup 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter 1/3 cup rice vinegar 1/3 cup palm or light brown sugar 1/4 cup soy sauce 1 tablespoon Thai red curry paste 1 tablespoon fish sauce 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice 1/2 teaspoon tamarind concentrate Kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper For the Ribs 3 tablespoons palm or light brown sugar 2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste 1 tablespoon fish sauce 1 tablespoon Kosher salt 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper 2 racks St. Louis-cut spare ribs 2 fist-sized chunks of light smoking wood, such as apple or cherry For the Sauce 1/3 cup Roughly chopped roasted peanuts 3 tablespoons roughly chopped cilantro 4 Thai bird's eye chilies, thinly sliced Procedure To make the sauce: Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add in shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, but not browned, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in ketchup, peanut butter, vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, curry paste, fish sauce, lime juice, and tamarind concentrate. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until sauce thickens slightly, 5-10 minutes. Remove from heat and season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer sauce to an airtight container and store in refrigerator until ready to use. To make the ribs: In a small bowl, mix together sugar, curry paste, fish sauce, salt, and pepper. Remove membrane from back of each rack of ribs and trim meat of excess fat. Spread seasoning mixture all over each rack of ribs. ire up a smoker or grill to 225°F, adding chunks of smoking wood when at temperature. When the wood is ignited and produces smoke, place the ribs in smoker or grill, meaty side up, and smoke until the ribs bend slightly when lifted from one end, 5-6 hours. During the last 30 minutes of cooking, brush top of each rack with sauce. Remove ribs from smoker and garnish with peanuts, cilantro, and chili slices. Slice ribs between bones and serve immediately.
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By: email@example.com (Joshua Bousel)
Title: Thai-influenced Sticky Peanut Butter Ribs
Sourced From: meatwave.com/recipes/thai-influenced-sticky-peanut-butter-ribs-recipe
Published Date: 05/07/20
Introducing Picanha (Fat Cap Sirloin Roast)
The French call it culotte, which means something like “britches.” Here in America, we know it as fat cap top sirloin. (Other names for this singular cut include rump cover, rump cap, and sirloin cap.)
But the cut reaches its apotheosis in Brazil, where it goes by the name of picanha (pronounced pee-CAHN-ya). Generations of gauchos and grill masters have raised the preparation, grilling, and degustation of this extraordinarily flavorful meat to the level of art.
Picanha, named after a pole used by Spanish and Portuguese farmers to herd cattle, comes from top of the rump—a triangular steak-like roast with a big beefy flavor that’s inversely proportional to its affordable price tag. What makes it so extraordinary is the thick cap of fat butchers leave on the top of the roast. Said fat melts and crisps during the cooking, basting the rich lean meat with fatty goodness. Picanha (NAMP number 1184D) can be difficult to find. Which was why I was amenable to trying a sample from Holy Grail, an artisanal company that sources upper Prime meats –meats that are typically available only to restaurants.
Brazilians have devised an ingenious way to cut and grill picanha. They slice it crosswise (with the grain) into 2-inch strips, which they curl into C-shapes and thread onto rotisserie spits. The seasonings are kept simple: salt and only salt prior to cooking; farofa (toasted cassava flour) and molho de companha (fiery country salsa) by way of optional accompaniments.
The skewers spin over a hot charcoal fire, the fat from the top skewer dripping onto the picanha below it. Once browned on the outside, the meat is paraded through the dining room on a spit to be carved directly onto patrons’ plates. The uncooked meat in the center is returned to the rotisserie for more grilling. The beauty of this system? Everyone gets an end cut.
When I cook picanha, I like to roast it on the rotisserie, but instead of slicing it into strips, I grill it whole. This is quicker and easier than the Brazilian method and it keeps the meat nice and juicy.
I also like to “hedgehog” the fat cap—score the surface in a deep crosshatch pattern. This helps render some of the fat and crisp what remains.
For seasoning (and for extra flavor), I use a brisket rub in the style of Texas Hill Country brisket: equal parts sea salt and coarsely ground black pepper, with garlic and onion powder for pungency and oregano and hot pepper flakes for oomph.
Meat prices are rising this holiday season—along with everything else. Want to serve an impressive, richly flavorful roast—without busting your budget? Picanha is your ticket.
Picanha Spice-Rubbed and Spit-Roasted on a Wood Fire Rotisserie
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BBQBible Exclusive – Picanha Roast – 20% Off Sitewide with code BARBECUEBIBLE at HolyGrailSteak.com through 12/20/21.
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The post Introducing Picanha (Fat Cap Sirloin Roast) appeared first on Barbecuebible.com.
By: Daniel Hale
Title: Introducing Picanha (Fat Cap Sirloin Roast)
Sourced From: barbecuebible.com/2021/12/13/introducing-picanha-fat-cap-sirloin-roast/
Published Date: 12/13/21
Did you miss our previous article…
Jalapeño-Lime Chicken Skewers
When I'm devising a marinade, I always taste it to ensure the flavor and seasoning are all in line with expectations. It's not uncommon for a marinade to get pushed in a directions that makes it taste a bit overboard on its own, but that's often needed because flavors will get diminished when the marinade is adorning its subject and has been cooked. There have been some marinades though that I try and think, “I'd eat that with a spoon.” I don't think I've actually developed a recipe though where the marinade purposefully did double duty as a meat seasoning and dip, so I figured I might as well give that shot and see how it works out. In the case of these jalapeño-lime chicken skewers, the answer was, surprisingly well.
The trickiest part of this recipe was finding the right balance to the sauce so it would taste good as a dip, but also have enough flavor to work as a marinade. To achieve that, I started with tangy Greek yogurt as a base since that seemed like a good direction for a dual purpose sauce. I pureed the yogurt in a blender with cilantro, cumin, jalapeño, garlic, and lime juice and zest. The result was a sauce that had a good hit of heat, hefty tang, and appealing green hue. The cumin and garlic also gave it some extra depth and nuance that I may have dialed up if this would have been used a marinade alone, but I knew would come out in the final dish after the chicken was dipped in the sauce.
Once I had the sauce settled, I took to the task of cubing up chicken for the skewers. I advocate for chicken thighs for this use in most instance because the added flavor and fat in the dark meat adds insurance to ending with juicy results. The only place breasts actually do better than thighs in this application is they cube up more nicely—for the thighs, I sometimes have to cut longer strips that I then fold over on the skewer to arrive at a more cube-like shape.
After the chicken was prepped, I moved it into a medium bowl and poured in roughly half the sauce. I tossed that to ensure the chicken was all well coated, then covered, and set it in the fridge. While the marinade had a fair amount of lime juice, the citric acid doesn't have such a drastic effect on the texture of the meat that it can't be left to marinate overnight. The marinade doesn't need that long though to do its work and I only let mine rest in the fridge for about six hours—prepping it in the morning and then cooking it in the mid-afternoon.
When the time came to grill, I skewered up the chicken and then lit a full chimney of coals. After letting the grill preheat, I placed the skewers over direct, high heat and let them cook. At the start, they stuck to the grates with might, but as they seared, the meat began to release and I was able to begin flipping.
I had to deal with some sticking still here and there, but nothing that a little extra scrape with the tongs couldn't handle. As each side was more evenly seared, I was able to move the chicken around easier, at which point I flipped and turned them more regularly so they would be well browned and cooked through all over. You can always test doneness with an instant-read thermometer—you're looking for between 160 to 165°F—but I found for this recipe, once everything was well browned, the chicken was definitely done, which took about ten minutes of grilling time total.
Following the glamour shots, I verified chicken itself had a very nice flavor. The marinade definitely was on the lighter side, but the brightness of the lime and cilantro came through along with a bit of earthiness from the cumin and fruitiness from the jalapeño, but with very little heat. That mellow, yet effective, flavor got a big boost after a dip in the reserved sauce, which brought in a lot of what was already happening, but in a more pronounced way that also delivered a nice spiciness which was balanced by the cooling yogurt. It definitely made a good case that a sauce can do dual work as a marinade and dip given the right attention to detail.
Published on Thu Sep 9, 2021 by Joshua Bousel
- Yield 4 servings
- Prep 15 Minutes
- Inactive 4 Hours
- Cook 10 Minutes
- Total 4 Hours 25 Minutes
- For the Sauce
- 2 cups Greek yogurt
- 1/3 cup packed roughly chopped fresh cilantro
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 medium jalapeño, stemmed and roughly chopped
- 2 medium cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon grated lime zest
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon light brown sugar
- Kosher salt, to taste
- 2lbs chicken thighs, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
- Metal or bamboo skewers
- 2 tablespoons roughly chopped cilantro, for garnish
- To make the marinade: Place yogurt, cilantro, olive oil, lime juice, jalapeño, garlic, lime zest, soy sauce, cumin, and brown sugar in the jar of a blender. Puree until all ingredients are very finely chopped and sauce is green and smooth. Transfer 1/2 of sauce to a medium bowl, add in cubed chicken, and to evenly coat. Cover bowl and place in refrigerator and marinate for 4 hours to overnight. Transfer remaining sauce to an airtight container and place in refrigerator.
- Thread chicken onto skewers so each piece is touching the next.
- Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and spread the coals evenly over entire surface of coal grate. Set cooking grate in place, cover grill and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Clean and oil the grilling grate. Grill chicken, turning occasionally, until well browned on all sides and center of meat registers between 160-165°F on an instant read thermometer, about 10 minutes total. Transfer skewers to platter and let rest for 5 minutes. Garnish with cilantro and serve immediately with reserved sauce for dipping.
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By: firstname.lastname@example.org (Joshua Bousel)
Title: Jalapeño-Lime Chicken Skewers
Sourced From: meatwave.com/recipes/grilled-jalapeno-lime-chicken-skewers-recipe
Published Date: 09/09/21
Hot Link Stuffed Tri-tip
I used a long slender knife to make a cut all the way from the wide end of the tri-tip to the narrow end. I stopped just short of cutting through the narrow end.
The best way to do this is to make a cut all the way through then turn your knife about 45°F and make another cut all the way through.
Insert about a teaspoon of butter in the entryway..
Push the kielbasa, hotlink, etc. all the way in. If it's having too much trouble, try making the cavity just a little wider with your knife.
I used a link of all beef kielbasa with jalapeños in my stuffed tri-tip.
Sprinkle about 1.5 to 2 teaspoons of course kosher salt on the top side of the tri-tip. I use Morton's in the blue box since it is flaked and dissolves much faster and easier than most other kosher salt. Feel free to use another brand/kind but the amount may need to be modified slightly depending on its granule shape and size.
Please see my article on wet brining vs. dry brining for an in-depth look at this subject.
I also sprinkled it real good with my Texas style rub (Purchase formula here | Purchase bottled rub)
Place the tri-tip in the fridge overnight if possible or at least 4 hours to give the salt plenty of time to react with the meat.
Here it is after 10 hours.. ready to go in the smoker.
Setup your smoker for cooking at about 225°F using indirect heat. If your smoker uses a water pan, fill it up.
Once your smoker is heated up and producing smoke, place the tri-tip directly on the grate or you can use a pan/rack to ensure the smoke is able to get to all sides.
I used the Hasty Bake Legacy for this cook.. you can use any smoker or even the grill for this as long as you maintain the correct temperature and remove it when it reaches it's perfect finish temperature.
Let the tri-tip cook for 2 hours or until it reaches an internal temperature of 130°F. If you run at 275°F, it will get done in about an hour or less.
If you want to finish the tri-tip with a sear (recommended), remove it from the smoker when it reaches 110°F and place it on a very hot grill, griddle or iron pan. Sear all sides of the tri-tip and don't forget the sides/edges.
On the Hasty Bake you simply need to remove the deflector over the charcoal pan and raise the pan so that it sits right below the grates in the “sear” position.
Watch the meat carefully and turn as required to sear evenly.
Once the tri-tip is finished cooking, set it on a cutting board and slice it according to the diagram on THIS PAGE.
All sliced up!
Great recipe, Rob! It was really cool having a piece of sausage/hot link nestled into each slice and the flavor was out of this world!
By: Jeff Phillips
Title: Hot Link Stuffed Tri-tip
Sourced From: www.smoking-meat.com/april-29-2021-hot-link-stuffed-tri-tip
Published Date: 04/29/21