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Ribs Take Wing

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First came Beer Can Chicken. Then the Bacon Explosion. Then Bacon Wrapped Onion Rings and Pork Shooters.

So the next way cool thing that will rock the barbecue blogosphere?

We’re putting our Bitcoins on Rib Wings.

Rib Wings are made by slicing a rack of ribs into individual ribs before cooking. The process resembles how chicken wings are divided into drumettes and flats.

Which brings us to the debate as to who in the barbecue world first created the rib wing. Forbes.com writer and Barbecue University alum Larry Olmsted credits Mike Hiller with the Rib Wing (Forbes, May 2021).

I’m a diehard mad scientist when it comes to barbecue. I love experimenting when I cook. I like to see how changing the rub, the sauce, or the grill produces new flavors and textures. For example, the ribs I cook low and slow in a Big Green Egg XL will taste and look different than the ribs I hang in my Pit Barrel Cooker. Check out my “Ultimate Rib” blog to read more about my ribs experiments.

Rib Wings are my latest experiment. A rack of ribs is typically sliced into individual ribs after cooking; why not cook them that way? And why did no one think of it earlier?

How to Grill Rib Wings

Here is how my Rib Wings came together. I started by slicing a rack of St Louis cut spareribs into individual ribs. I normally remove the membrane from a rack of ribs before cooking. Slicing the ribs before cooking eliminates that tedious step per Hiller. I liberally seasoned the ribs with one of my homemade spice rubs. (You could also use Steven’s Kansas City Smoke Rub.

I then placed the ribs on a wire rack to make it easier to move them on and off the grill. I left space between each rib so the smoke would circulate evenly. My plan was to cook the ribs low and slow, spray the ribs with an apple cider vinegar mixture while cooking, and then baste with barbecue sauce at the end as outlined by Hiller.

I set up a Big Green Egg XL for indirect grilling by inserting the diffuser plate and obtained a temperature of 250 degrees. I used apple chucks to create wood smoke. After smoking the ribs for one hour, I started spraying the ribs with a mixture of apple cider vinegar, Worcestershire, and hot sauce.

I continued to spray the ribs every 30 minutes. To finish the ribs, I increased the temperature to 375 degrees for the last 20 minutes and basted the ribs with my homemade spicy peach barbecue sauce. Total cooking time was three and half hours. I knew the ribs were done when the meat was pulled back from the bones.

Here is what I learned by cooking ribs individually. The smaller ribs cooked faster than the meatier middle ribs. The ribs from the ends of the rack were fall of the bone tender, but I prefer my ribs to hold together when I take a bite. The meatier ribs held together beautifully. The ribs developed a dark mahogany color, almost to the point of looking burnt. I feel the dark color was a result of the Worcestershire sauce in the spray mixture. The dark color occurred before I added the spicy peach barbecue sauce, so it was not due to burning the sauce.

The process of seasoning and smoking the ribs individually definitely boosts the flavor compared to the whole rack method. Every bite had a heightened level of sweetness, spiciness, and smokiness. The combination of the rub and smoke created a crisp texture that reminded me of the “bark” I love on brisket. One minor shortcoming of smoking individual ribs is the smaller end ribs were a hint less tender on the inside. The most noticeable advantage to the “Rib Wing” is that each bite of the rib has a blast of flavor that comes from exposing all sides of the rib to spice rub and smoke.

I think Rib Wings would make a great appetizer for a cookout. I wondered if I could cook enough to make a meal, so I ran a second test. The second test was going to be performed on my Pit Barrel Cooker, which is one of my favorite methods to cook multiple racks of ribs or wings for a large group. I can hang 6-8 racks of ribs or cook over seventy chicken wings on the hanging skewers in the barrel cooker. I sliced the ribs and seasoned them with Steven’s Kansas City rub. Apple wood chips were added to create wood smoke. The barrel cooks at a higher temperature so I anticipated a different texture and shorter cooking time.

I wanted to skewer the ribs and hang them like I do chicken wings. After a few attempts, I didn’t feel the ribs were secure on the hanging skewers and might fall off as the meat pulls back from the bones. Disappointed, I placed the individual ribs on the grate.

I started to spray the ribs with the same apple cider vinegar mixture after 30 minutes. The ribs started to pull back from the bones after an hour and a quarter. I then basted the ribs with Steven’s Chipotle Molasses barbecue sauce and cooked for an additional 15 minutes. Total cooking time was an hour and a half.

Rib Wings with sauce

Due to the higher temperature of the barrel cooker the rub and sauce caramelized and produced a sweet and smoky exterior. The aroma of wood smoke was present despite the shorter time exposed to the smoke. The time required to cook the larger ribs caused the smaller end ribs to become too crispy. The ribs developed the same dark color on the ribs as in the first test. The ribs had an appealing sweet with a little heat flavor due to the combination of Steven’s rub and sauce. The ribs held together with each bite. The only drawback? I was disappointed I could not hang the ribs. I thought it would be a cool way to cook enough rib wings for a larger group.

I enjoyed both experiments because they were so incredibly tasty. Seasoning all sides of the ribs and adding sauce elevated the flavor of the ribs. I hope this inspires you to run your own flavorful experiment.

So blogsphere—get ready for rib wings. You’ll never think about ribs—or wings—the same way!

UPDATE: We recently received an email from Mark Garetz, who in 2017, published a recipe for individual pork ribs named “Blasphemy Ribs.” (It can be found on his website, blasphemyribs.com.) Predating both recipes by hundreds of years, of course, are the red-hued individually-roasted ribs served by Chinese-themed restaurants. There are many instances in the culinary realm of “universal mind,” where similar ideas have sprung up in geographically disparate parts of the globe. Planking, hamburgers, pasta, and sandwiches are just a few examples.

Steve Nestor is the fire wrangler on Project Fire and at Barbecue University. More importantly, he’s an incredibly skilled physical therapist in the Boston area. If leaning over a hot grill or pulling heavy briskets from smoker leaves you with weak knees or a sore back, give him a call. At very least, sign up for his newsletter.

https://nestorphysicaltherapy.com/

The post Ribs Take Wing appeared first on Barbecuebible.com.

By: Daniel
Title: Ribs Take Wing
Sourced From: barbecuebible.com/2021/07/20/how-to-grill-rib-wings/
Published Date: 07/20/21

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Portobello Marsala Strip Steaks

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[FTC Standard Disclosure] We received no compensation for this post. After being big fans of Thermoworks products since 2010, I have recently enrolled as a Thermoworks affiliate.
We don't do a lot of sauces for steak. Dragging fresh slices of steak through the juices, seasonings, and melted butter on the cutting board is my standard MO. But every now and then, I like to shake things up and get a little saucy like I did with this Portobello Marsala Strip Steak.
The salty sweet flavor of the sauce and mushrooms pairs excellently with the steak.

Slight confession, we typically split a steak between the two of us for dinner because our appetites have slowed down as we have gotten older. The good news is that means we get to have steaks for dinner two nights in a row. 
The full recipe is at the bottom of the post. Here are a few pictures and tips from the cooks.
USDA Prime is the grade, Certified Angus Beef® is the brand. How is the brand more selective? For one, USDA allows for the steer to be A or B maturity for prime beef. However, Certified Angus Beef's 10 science-based standards allow only for A maturity.
In addition to the USDA grade and brand name, I also consider the color and marbling. I look for a steak that is deep red like this and has lots of white flecks (smaller the better) evenly distributed across the steak.

As I mentioned, often have this two nights in a row. In this mise en place, you can see we used black pepper and garlic salt for the seasoning.
In this mise en place, I used my NMT Umami Steak Seasoning which harnesses the natural flavor enhancers found in mushrooms. Of course, in both set ups, you see my trusty Thermapen instant read thermometer, the gold standard for food thermometers. Thermoworks is closing out the Thermapen Mk4's for just $69 right now (usually they are $90).
It was a sunny, mild day so I rolled my Challenger Designs Torch cart out from under the gazebo.
Make sure to give your cast iron skillet adequate time to preheat, about 5 minutes should get it to 500°f. If the steak doesn't sizzle and smoke when you put it on, the skillet isn't hot enough.
The advantage to a skillet over grill grates is that you get an even, flavorful crust like this from a skillet. Grill marks look nice too and I still grill steaks, but I probably use a skillet 7 out of 10 times. 
Cook times on a skillet are often shorter, especially with thinner steaks like these strips, so keep your eye on your steaks and have a fast reading thermometer.
Portobello and cremini mushrooms are the same mushroom at different maturities, so you may find these labeled as Portobello, cremini, or even "baby bellas". It doesn't matter, just make sure to slice them thinly for quick cooking and you'll want about 1 1/2 to 2 cups of them after slicing.
At these temps, the mushrooms will cook quickly like they do in stir fry.
Marsala has a low amount of alcohol so you don't need to worry about possible eruptions of flame like can happen with bourbon or tequila. But as with adding any liquid to a hot skillet, still be careful to avoid steam burns.
When the marsala is almost dry like this, it is time to add the beef stock. This skillet is the 1930's era Griswold that I restored last year.
This is after adding the stock, seasoning, and slurry. Tip: I don't use the full cup of stock at first. I use about 2/3 to 3/4ths of the reduced stock. If the sauce gets too thick, then I whisk in some more stock to get the consistency that I like.
This picture is terrible but I want to point out something about fortifying the sauce with butter.  First, be sure to use cold butter for the final step. Secondly, keep the butter moving around the skillet until it has melted and combined with the sauce, so it emulsifies. This will keep your sauce from splitting.
The sweet and salty sauce enhances the flavor of the steak without covering it up. 
When it comes to sauced steaks, this Portobello Marsala sauce and our gorgonzola sauce are two of my favorites.

Portobello Marsala Strip SteaksBy www.nibblemethis.com
Published 07/26/2021
Pan seared NY Strip Steaks with sliced Portobello mushrooms in a marsala sauce served over noodles.
Ingredients2 10-ounce Certified Angus Beef® Brand NY Strip Steakshigh temperature cooking oil such as canola, peanut, etc2 1/2 teaspoons steak seasoning (see notes)2 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided6 medium-sized portobello mushrooms, stems removed, caps thinly sliced1 tablespoon finely diced shallot1/2 cup marsala wine1 cup reduced beef stock (see notes)4 ounces dry Angel Hair pasta, cooked according to directionsSlurry made by whisking 1 tablespoon corn starch with 1 tablespoon of cold water together1 green onion, slicedInstructionsPreheat the grill to 500°f. Set up the grill for direct heat (cooking directly above the heat) and light the grill. Five minutes before cooking , add a cast-iron skillet or other grill-safe skillet to the grill and allow it to preheat.Sear the steaks. Lightly coat the steaks with about 1 teaspoon each of the cooking oil. Season each steak with about 1 teaspoon of the steak seasoning. Place the steaks in the skillet and cook 2-3 minutes on each side, until the internal temperature reaches 125°f for medium-rare. Remove to a resting rack and keep warm.Make the sauceSaute the mushrooms. Add 1 tablespoon of butter to the skillet and stir in the mushrooms to coat them. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are wilting and giving off their moisture, about 2-3 minutes. Stir in the shallot and cook until the shallot is tender and transluscent, another 1-2 minutes.Stir in the marsala wine and leave the grill open so the wine will evaporate down to just a tablespoon or so, about 2 minutes.Stir in the stock and the final 1/2 teaspoon of the steak seasoning. Allow to come to a simmer.Whisk in the slurry and cook until the sauce thickens, about 30-60 seconds.Remove from heat and slowly stir the cold butter until it is dissolved. Serve. Divide the pasta between two plates and top with the sauce. Slice the steak and place on the pasta. Garnish with green onions.Yield: 2 servings
Prep Time: 00 hrs. 10 mins. Cook time: 00 hrs. 15 mins.
Total time: 25 mins.
Tags: steak, skillet, mushroomsNotes
Steak seasoning – I have used this same recipe using several steak seasonings so use your favorite. I often use my NMT Umami Steak Seasoning recipe. I also enjoy using using a 1:1 mix of dustless coarse black pepper and garlic salt.Reduced beef stock – Reducing the beef stock will concentrate the flavor and add body to the final sauce. Place 2 cups of beef stock in a pot over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer. Lower heat to maintain a steady simmer until the stock has reduced in volume by half to one cup, which should take about 20 minutes.

pasta,sauce,skillet,steak

By: Chris
Title: Portobello Marsala Strip Steaks
Sourced From: www.nibblemethis.com/2021/07/portobello-marsala-strip-steaks.html
Published Date: 07/26/21

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Planking, Demystified

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If you’ve visited the Pacific Northwest, chances are you’ve enjoyed one of the most distinctive American ways to grill fish: on a cedar or alder plank. The process satisfies and gratifies on quite a few levels.

First, the wood imparts a unique flavor all its own—a spicy, wine-like flavor in the case of cedar; a woodier, smokier flavor in the case of alder. It also tends to absorb any strong fishy flavors, a plus when serving stronger-flavored fish like salmon or bluefish, to people who are iffy about seafood. The plank keeps the fish from drying out and from sticking to the grill grate (a perennial problem). Last, it also eliminates the need to turn the fish over (a task which bedevils even experienced pit masters).

The technique originated, it appears, with the Native Americans of the Pacific Northwest who roasted local salmon in special cedar holders over blazing embers.

But there’s evidence that planking was also practiced in colonial times: George Washington hosted shad cook-outs at Mount Vernon, and an annual Shad Planking festival is still held each April in Sussex County. And 18th cookbooks describe cooking fish on planks in the oven. (Some food historians claim cooking food on hardwoods originated in Scandinavia.)

Inspired, chefs adopted the method, but didn’t limit the planked food to fish. In fact, any food that can be cooked low and slow and that doesn’t depend on searing can be cooked on planks. I have been experimenting with this technique for decades, and have published many recipes featuring not only fin fish like salmon and trout, but shellfish, meats like chicken and pork, as well as vegetables, tofu, fruit, and more. (See below.)

In fact, I recently introduced cedar grilling planks to my line of barbecue products. These planks—each package contains two 5.5- by 11.5-inch boards—will be your ticket to infusing your grilled food with flavorful wood smoke. They can be used with charcoal, gas, or pellet grills.

Personally, I like to singe the plank over the flames before arranging the food on it. But if you’re interested in reusing the plank, soak it in water (salted, if desired) or a flavorful liquid, like beer, wine, or fruit juice for an hour before grilling to discourage scorching. (A bag of ice or a heavy ceramic dish will keep the plank submerged. Do not use canned goods as the bottoms can leave black marks on the plank.)

Planking Tips:

  • Keep a spray bottle of water near the grill to extinguish any unexpected flare-ups on the plank as your food cooks.
  • Wood conducts heat more slowly than metal grill grates, so planked foods may take longer to cook.
  • Have a heat-proof surface at the ready—a place where you can set your planked food after removing it from the grill. An overturned rimmed sheet pan is one option. The planks might harbor glowing embers when removed from the grill.
  • To discourage sticking, brush the plank with vegetable oil before arranging food on it.
  • If you intend to reuse a plank—depending on how it’s been treated, planks can be reused one to two times—scrub it with plain water. Do not use soap.
  • For the most dramatic presentation, serve food directly on the plank.

Recipes for Planking

Plank-Smoked Camembert

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Smoked Planked Trout with Caper Dill Sauce

Get The Recipe »

Scotch Whisky-Smoked Salmon on a Cedar Plank with Grilled Mini Bagels

Scotch Whisky-Smoked Salmon on a Cedar Plank

Get The Recipe »

Smoke-Roasted Pears

Smoke-Roasted Pears

Get The Recipe »

Cedar Plank Chocolate Brownie S’Mores

Cedar Plank Chocolate Brownie S’Mores

Get The Recipe »

Planked Salmon with Maple-Mustard Glaze

Planked Salmon with Maple-Mustard Glaze

Get The Recipe »

Cedar-Planked Eggplant Parmigiana

Cedar-Planked Eggplant Parmigiana

Get The Recipe »

We’d love to hear your planking stories. Share them with us on Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, or Instagram!

The post Planking, Demystified appeared first on Barbecuebible.com.

By: Daniel
Title: Planking, Demystified
Sourced From: barbecuebible.com/2021/07/23/planking-demystified/
Published Date: 07/23/21

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Cooking Tips

Chapli Kebab

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When my wife suggested having kebabs recently, I imagined I'd be cooking meat on a stick because that's inevitably where one's mind goes when using the word “kebab.” With new recipes for the site always a priority, I set out to find or create something not previously covered here and began scrolling the interwebs and Instagram for inspiration. When I came across a video of chapli kebab being fried in a large pan on the street, I was immediately taken. I dug a little deeper and familiarized myself the best I could from video, words, and pictures with the different varieties of chapli kebab made in Afghanistan and Pakistan and knew this highly seasoned ground meat mixture was going to be right up my ally. So I gave it shot and was completely won over by these non-skewered little discs of beef that I can't say represent authenticity for sure, but they certainly deliver on immense deliciousness.

The variation in chapli kebab between the two countries seem mostly to be around the exact seasoning mixture, but they are also not that far separated in that arena. I assume there's differences from vendor to vendor as well, so I doubt there's one right answer, which gives me hope that my initial combination of spices that included coriander seeds, cumin seeds, black peppercorns, and pomegranate seeds, which I toasted and ground, was starting out on the right foot.

Chapli Kebab

The spices were just the beginning though, these kebabs had a ton of veggie mix-ins too—the chopping of all the onions, green chilies, tomato, cilantro, scallions, and garlic represented the most time and effort in this recipe. Once those were all prepped, it was quick to mix everything together with the high-fat ground beef plus the gram (chickpea) flour and egg used as binders.

Chapli Kebab

Once I had the mixture looking evenly distributed, I began portioning and shaping. I did this by breaking off roughly a 2-inch ball of meat and flattening it between my palms into a disc a little over three inches in diameter and about half an inch tall.

Chapli Kebab

Now frying in animal fat is the traditional way to cook these kebabs, but I figured they had to do well on the grill. That confidence was slightly defeated as I found they didn't grill with the ease I was imagining. The amount of veggies that went into the meat made it looser than things like meatballs and burgers, and that led the first couple patties I tried to flip to fall apart.

Chapli Kebab

I was able to avoid that folly going forward by ensuring the first side we very well seared before trying to move them at all. For something like a burger, this would make me nervous about uneven and potential overcooking, but I did want these kebabs cooked all the way through, plus a deep sear seemd to be the right course of action given chapli kebab is usually fried and get just as browned, if not more, in the hot oil.

Chapli Kebab

Once the patties were all done, I plated them up on fresh naan-e-afghani along with fresh sliced tomatoes, red onion, and lime wedges. I knew by just reading the ingredient list that I was going to love these, but I wasn't prepared for how much I was going to love them—for someone attracted to big flavors, these probably delivered the most flavor of any kebabs I've ever had. There was an upfront heat that had a great freshness to it which melded with the cilantro, scallions, and tomato. There was then a background sweetness that I attributed to the onions, while the spices gave that earthy quality which is common in a lot of Middle Eastern and Persian dishes. I didn't include the fresh veggies and bread accompaniments when I originally wrote up this recipe, but they felt so central to the meal as a whole that I thought they had to be added in to really deliver the full experience that brought me so much joy the day I made these chapli kebab.

Published on Thu Jul 29, 2021 by Joshua Bousel

Print Recipe

  • Yield 3-4 servings
  • Prep 20 Minutes
  • Cook 10 Minutes
  • Total 30 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon dried pomegranate seeds
  • 1 pound ground beef (at least 20% fat)
  • 1 cup finely minced onion (about 1 medium onion)
  • 1/2 cup diced tomato
  • 1/3 cup finely minced fresh cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped green chili (such as Anaheim or jalapeño)
  • 3 tablespoons finely minced scallions (about 2 scallions)
  • 3 tablespoons gram flour
  • 2 teaspoons finely minced fresh garlic (about 2 medium cloves)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  •  
  • For Serving
  • Sliced fresh vegetables (such as tomato, red onion, and cucumber)
  • 1 lemon or lime, wedged
  • Naan-e-afghani

Procedure

  1. Place coriander seeds, cumin seeds, black peppercorns, and pomegranate seeds in a small skillet set over medium-high heat. Toast until spices become fragrant, about 3 minutes. Transfer spices to a spice grinder or granite mortar and pestle and process into a coarse powder.
  2. Place beef in a large bowl and add in ground spices, onion, tomato, cilantro, green chili, scallions, gram flour, garlic, salt, crushed red pepper, and egg. Using hands, combine mixture until ingredients are evenly distributed. Break off a roughly 2-inch ball of meat mixture and flatten into a patty roughly 3-inches wide and 1/2-inch thick. Place patty on tray and repeat process until all meat has been shaped.
  3. 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. Place patties on grill and cook until well seared on first side, 3 to 5 minutes. Flip patties and continue to cook until second side is well seared and meat is cooked throughout, another 3 to 5 minutes. Transfer patties to a serving platter and serve immediately with fresh vegetables, citrus wedges, and/or naan-e-afghani.

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By: meatmaster@meatwave.com (Joshua Bousel)
Title: Chapli Kebab
Sourced From: meatwave.com/recipes/afghani-chapli-kebab-recipe
Published Date: 07/29/21

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