Friday, October 13, 2006 

Weekend Barbecue!

As much as the New England barbecue season will be winding down, I won't stop barbecuing. In fact, it's highly likely that I'll be outside in January trying to get the ice of my BBQ guru fan!

This weekend, though, there should be no ice or snow in our future (we don't live in Buffalo!). Instead, there'll be the sweet smell of cherry, beef and pork. My supply of smoked meat has been running low, so I'm taking some time this weekend to fill the freezer up again. I'll be cooking two briskets and two pork shoulders overnight on Saturday. It's good for me to run my pit at night to keep in shape for the competition season next summer.

In addition to the shoulders and the briskets, I'll probably try to squeeze a chicken or two into the Backwoods smoker. And some eggs. And possibly one of my dogs. And my old cat. No, the cat's too old and would probably be tough. Plus, he might eat the chicken. Ok, ok, there's no cat or dog being barbecued, but nevertheless - My rule of thumb is "don't waste grill space".

My only regret is that I ran out of Wicked Good Charcoal a while ago and haven't had the opportunity to order any. So, I'm stuck with two bags of another brand which I feel is very sub par. I'll have to make due with it though, and hopefully I can order some from Lee Ann in Maine soone enough.

The weather is going to be pretty decent this weekend, so I'll be sure to take pictures.

Enjoy the fall!


(no cats or dogs were harmed in the writing of this message.)

Wednesday, October 04, 2006 

The season winds down

The New England barbecue season is winding its way down. The days of constant barbecueing and grilling are being replaced by hot dishes cooked in the stove. I love to cook fall foods. Chili, stews, soups and various "hot dishes" (pronounced hutdish if you're from the midwest) are something I'm extremely fond of.

But, that doesn't mean that cooking over fire is over for the year. In fact, I was looking at my neglected Backwoods Smoker thinking that I had better plan for a weekend of brisket and pork shoulder before I lose my mind. And now that I've got a well insulated smoker, I see myself cooking the big meats deep into the winter.

This weekend, a bunch of family and friends are heading to the Hog's family cottage for one final weekend on the coast of Maine. With my father and stepmother there for the fun, there'll be a total of nine of us - all of us hardcore foodees. The Old Bull and Mamer will be there, so team Howling Hog will be well represented. We spent a good part of today emailing eachother about what foods we're going to be cooking. We're all looking forward to it.

There's nothing in this world like food, family and friends. I'm grateful to have a herd of people around me who love to do what I do.

So, even though the barbecue season is coming to an end, I don't see it. I'll plan a few full day barbecue sessions over the next six months. To be sure, there'll be less than during the summer, but you can expect a brisket and a pork shoulder out of me every now and then. And, of course, there's always a way to bring food cooked over fire into your kitchen. I'll grill my stew meat before I throw it in the stew pot to give it that smoky flavor that just can't be beat. I'll smoke a chicken or turkey for whatever dishes we want to use it for.

And, of course, there's holidays and parties. We're already planning to host Thanskgiving. I see a big piece of beef and a turkey to give thanks for! Then there's the NFL playoff party with the MuleSkinner and the Superbowl party at my place. And the Boy's birthday in February.

It's good to know that even when the season ends - it doesn't really end. It just gets cozier in the house.