Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Rib Sandwich / Char-Broil 940X

Kroger had those great big “bronto” sized spare ribs on sale again last week for $1.67 a pound and even though they are all pumped up with salt water (13%)....I still couldn’t pass them up and bought several slabs. Figured I could do something with them if I was careful with my rubs and process so they wouldn’t taste like cured ham!

I decided to do rib sandwiches with a couple of those great big 6.5 pound slabs.

I figured it would take about 6-7 hours to get these big rib slabs done so I set up the CB 940X cooker with some fire bricks in the charcoal grate which will give me a longer fuse burn and loaded it with some Wicked Good brickettes which make a nice longer burn in the grill. I then setup my grates for an indirect cook and used grids to make it a two layer cook to get it all on the cooker. Fired it off and then prepped my ribs while I was waiting for the cooker to get on temp.

I cut each slab in half and sprinkled on a blend of Smokin’ Guns hot rub mixed 50/50 with some Florida Crystals pure cane sugar. I needed some extra sweetener to overpower some of that lousy salt water.

I smoked them with some hickory chunks for about 4 hours and then pulled them off for foiling. In each of the foil boats, I placed about 2 oz of apple juice, some brown sugar, about 1 oz of Agave Nectar, and about an ounce of clover honey. Sealed them up and placed them back on the cooker for about 2 more hours in the heat as I needed some real fall off the bone rib meat for my sandwiches.

Pulled the ribs off the cooker and removed the foil and then removed all the bones and cartilage from the ribs. I also chopped up some of the larger pieces and placed it in a large bowl.

The pulled and chopped meat came out wonderful and not too salty and I put up about half the meat in freezer bags for future use and then made up my sandwiches.

This is a brand new sauce from my friend Bill Arnold and his Blues Hog company and is “Killer”. It is called Smokey Mountain Sauce and I used it on my rib meat before I placed it on a sandwich.

I placed a big pile of the meat on a hotdog bun and then added some cheese chunks, some fruit, and some peppers.

I then added my slaw....shaaaaazam, now that is a sandwich!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Grate Steaks

Four or five times a year, our local Kroger store will have a bargain that I can't pass up. It might be spare ribs, maybe round steak or chuck steak, or even whole chickens. A few day ago, they had a sale on their USDA Whole Boneless Choice Ribeye loin for just $4.97 a pound. With hamburger running about $3.39 a pound, this is a bargain in comparison! This meat normally sells for about $10.00 a pound cut into steaks.

I purchased two of the whole loins with a combined weight of 34.24 pounds with a total price of $342.06 for a sale price of $170.18. Heck of a deal...half price for great meat.

The ticket on one of the whole loins.

I usually start by cutting off the tail as I use it in sausage and then cut a roast off of each end of the loin and slice the balance up into about 1-1/4" thick steaks. However, we were also out of what I call "State Fair" steaks so I cut what meat I would use for the roasts into my 1/2" thick State Fair sandwich steaks.

I like to grill the State Fair steaks about 75 seconds a side over a very hot lump charcoal fire and then place them into a half pan filled with some hot Lipton Onion soup. Serve them right out of the pan on a good bun. Good Stuff!!

More steaks ready for the shrink wrap.

They all didn't make it to the that's a nice steak.

Ready to freeze for future use.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Butterflied and Pulled Extra Juicy Chicken / Weber Kettle

This is a treat that we like to do often as it is simple and always produces great results. We plan to use this chicken as pulled chicken and we want the finished chicken just dripping wet with as much retained juice as possible. Don't want to spill any of that goodness down on the fire. Must be retained inside the chicken. Got That!!!

Ok, I had the Char-Broil cast iron grid in the cooker so I decided to use it and set the fire up for an indirect cook with a drip pan in the middle of the kettle.

Loaded some Ozark Oak lump into the baskets on each side of my cooking area and lit it off.

This is a fresh Bell & Evans whole chicken that hasn't been injected with a lot of salt water and seaweed and with full coverage perfect skin. We need perfect skin for this treat as the secret to this cook is in the skin.

Turn that chicken over and cut out the back bone. Then break the breast bone so it will lay flat on the plate. I added some Smokin' Guns rub to this back side of the chicken and then turned it over.

Sprinkled on more rub to the skin side and it is ready for the cooker. NOW, from this point forward, this chicken will NEVER be with the skin up during the cook. It will not be turned over again, period. SKIN SIDE DOWN.

I carefully arrange the chicken on the grid to be sure the skin has everything covered so none of the juice can get out of the meat.

During the cook, there will be puddles of juice on top on the chicken as all that great skin is holding all this juicy goodness inside the chicken. SKIN SIDE DOWN, use that lousy old chicken skin to your advantage!

I did a couple burgers too and those Char-Broil grids left some nice marks on the meat.

Late into the cook, I still had some puddles of juice on top of the chicken. I remove the chicken at about 165 internal measured with a Thermopen.

I take the chicken off keeping it skin side down being very careful not to spill any remaining juice. It is placed on a plate skin side down for about an hour to let it cool and absorb the juice back into the meat.

After cooling and turning over to skin side up, it still leaks some of that juicy goodness on my plate. This is one juicy chicken. Can you imagine, non-injected, non brined, non pumped in any way.....and all that goodness!

I then strip all the skin off of the chicken. Next step is to pull the chicken and place it into a bowl.

I chop up the chicken skin into little pieces, chop up about 3-4 pieces of bacon and chop up about 2 fresh Jalapeno or hot banana peppers for this treat.

This goes into a skillet with about 2 tablespoons of peanut oil and I fry this mixture up until about crisp.

I strain the grease out and add the mixture into my pulled chicken.

Now, this is some good stuff!

Makes a nice juicy chicken sandwich. YUM

Monday, August 15, 2011

Beef Ribs, Slab Potatoes, Breaded Hot Wings / CB 940X

I found a slab of beef ribs in the back of the freezer that had been in there about a year so they needed to be cooked up. Since I will have some extra room on the cooker, decided to cook up some breaded hot wings and some slab potatoes.

I rolled my Char-Broil 940X out to my cooking area.

Figured I would need about a 6 hour burn so I set it up for an indirect fuse burn with 3 firebricks. I also added a raised grid to give me some additional space on the indirect area of the cooker.

Pulled the membrane off of the back side of the ribs and gave them a light coat of Smokin’ Guns Hot rub. Wife fixed up some more slab potatoes and I put them on the cooker along with the ribs.

While this was cooking up, made up my breading and breaded up the chicken wings and got them into the fridge for about 45 minutes before they can go on the cooker. Best to let the breading set up for the best results.

After the potatoes came off, I added my breaded hot chicken wings.

Later into the cook after I had sauced the wings and turned them. I did sauce and turn these wings about 4 times as the breading really sucks up all that hot goodness.

The breaded hot wings just off the cooker.

A nice looking slab of meaty beef ribs.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Steak and Slab Potatoes / Weber Kettle

I needed to cook up a couple of steaks and decided to do them on my Weber Performer and with all that extra room, I needed something else to cook and just loaded it up with some slab potatoes.

I set the cooker up for both direct and indirect cooking.

I sliced my pots lengthwise and brushed on some peanut oil.

I sprinkled on some dried herbs along with some salt and fresh cracked black pepper and got them ready for the cooker. There are many herbs and spices that are good on the pots including thyme, rosemary, basil, chives, dill, oregano, dried onions, garlic salt, garlic powder, to name a few. I also like to sprinkle on some parmesan cheese just before they come off of the cooker. Just pick out a couple of things that you like and put them on your slab potatoes.

I place the potatoes on the indirect side of the cooker and do not add any smoke wood as my good all wood charcoal give the pots a great flavor.

A picture a little later into the cook as I did the steaks on the direct side of the cooker.

Some rib-eyes done on the plate.

My slab potatoes.

These slab potatoes freeze well and nuke well so we try to keep them on hand for a quick treat especially with steak and burgers.

Breakfast Casserole / Char-Broil 500X

I developed this recipe because I am a lazy cook and wanted a simple to fix whole breakfast meal casserole for our Saturday morning contest cooks. I also wanted to be able to fix it on say Wednesday evening and then bake it on the following Saturday morning. Here is what I came up with and it is very very good and super simple to make.


16 oz tube of Bob Evans Zesty Hot Sausage
Bout 1-1/2 cups (6oz) of frozen hash brown potatoes
Bout 1/2 cup chopped onions
bout 1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
5 large eggs
Bout 2 cups of shredded Cheddar cheese (I use the sharp)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp leaf oregano
1 can Crescent rolls
1 Nine by Nine tin foil poultry pan
Pam for spraying the pan

Run some hot water into a bowl and toss the hash browns in there to thaw out.
Chop up the onions and bell peppers and place them into an oiled cast iron skillet that will fit your cooker.

Cook them about 6-7 minutes and then add the sausage. Brown it well and pour off the grease.

Add the 3 spices and mix it up.

Select a sealed container that is large enough and will fit in your cooler.

Break the 5 eggs into the container and mix them up. Pour the sausage mix into the container, strain the hash browns thru a colander and place them into the container, add the 2 cups of Cheddar and then mix it all up well.

Now if you need to cook at a later date... you can place this mixture and the can of rolls in the cooler and you are all ready to go as it just takes a few minutes to finish it from here.

Pam the poultry pan and place half (4) of the Crescent rolls on the bottom of the pan.
Spoon out the mixture and spread it evenly on the bottom of the pan on top of the rolls.

Place the last half of the Crescent rolls over the top of the mixture and then sprinkle on some paprika.

Fired up the CB500X with some of that great Ozark Oak lump charcoal and brought it up to around 350 degrees for my baking. I have it setup for an indirect cook or bake with the charcoal on the right half of the cooker.

I had to bend up the pan a little to get it to fit as I didn’t have the correct size pan.

I just let the little cooker do its thing for about an hour or until the internal of my treat was at 165 degrees and then took it off the cooker.

Looking good coming off the cooker.

I cut the casserole into 9 servings.

Served it up.