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Old 09-23-2008, 02:15 PM
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Exclamation Cookin' with Wood

One of my other methods of wasting good wood and alcohol is entering barbeque contests. This weekend, 9/27, I'm entered in "Smokin' on the Beaver" (it's named after the creek) in Atwood, KS. 10/4, I'll be in Oberlin, KS for "Up in Smoke." I get a week off and then I'll be in Studley, KS for "Smokin' at the Cottonwood," (a historic ranch) on 10/18.

Hopefully I'll repeat my winning performances of last year if a Merlot front doesn't interfere. I completed welding repairs on my smoker last weekend; I've gathered a pile of mulberry and hardwood scraps for fuel; my cook boxes are packed; a case of assorted liquor sits by the door and I checked to be sure the secret cooking beer will be at the party store. I surely am forgetting something.
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Last edited by Wonderwino; 09-23-2008 at 02:30 PM.
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Old 09-23-2008, 03:00 PM
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Default Re: Cookin' with Wood

Wonderwino,
Sounds like great fun. How about Filling us in with pictures and recipes.
I did not know that mulberry was good for smoking, we use mostly hickory.
Are there required meats that you have to cook? What are the rules?

Sunday I did leg of lamb, roasted it, should have butterflied it and done it on the grill. Opened up an 1981 bottle of Grand Vin de Chateau Latour.
Hows that grab you ? Or as a Texas oil man once said to me "Hows that fit your pistol"
The other Wino.
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Old 09-23-2008, 04:06 PM
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Default Re: Cookin' with Wood

Yum! Do you guys deliver?

What's a "Merlot front"? It sounds like something I need - unless it's a hangover...

We're mostly a zinfandel family here. It is California's wine, after all. There's an amazing variety available, and they all go well with pasta and game.

Good luck in your BBQ contests. Let me know when you're coming to SD, so I can sample the wares.

Do you do dry rub, or wet sauce? I guess KC style, given where you're competing...
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Old 09-23-2008, 04:18 PM
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Default Re: Cookin' with Wood

Quote:
Originally Posted by Poto View Post

We're mostly a zinfandel family here. It is California's wine, after all. There's an amazing variety available, and they all go well with pasta and game.

I think the best Zins are from the central coast area (San Luis Obispo County), also the best Pinot Noirs I've tasted.

That's also the area where the Santa Maria style barbeque originated. In my opinion, the best barbeque anywhere. A tri-tip slow cooked on a special grill over their local oak, nothing like it. Especially with a nice glass of Pinot Noir.
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Old 09-23-2008, 04:22 PM
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Default Re: Cookin' with Wood

Now that's a hobby! Good luck and have fun.

"I checked to be sure the secret cooking beer will be at the party store."

Is this a hint or an obfuscation? What kind of beer do they sell at party stores?

Last edited by MichaelKellough; 09-23-2008 at 09:24 PM.
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Old 09-23-2008, 05:18 PM
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Default Re: Cookin' with Wood

Most of the contests provide the standard meats for your entry fee. (Ribs, Chicken, Brisket, Pork Butt) Open class ("Fin, Fur or Feather") is provided by the contestants, as are beans and chili.

A "Merlot Front" is an upscale version of the "Beer Fronts" that clouded my college years.

As far as wood goes - I like fruitwoods, because they have a sweeter flavor than hickory or mesquite. Mulberry happens to be fairly abundant here, and most trees are about half-dead most of the time, allowing non-destructive harvesting of smokin' wood. i only smoke stuff for 3-5 hours depending on the meat; then it gets wrapped with foil and secret sauce for the long, slow cook to perfection. I've done brisket that can be cut with a fork! (30 hours) Once everything is wrapped, any good hardwood will do for pure heat.

Oh, I will trade cooking for Festools!
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Old 09-23-2008, 10:13 PM
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Default Re: Cookin' with Wood

I just thought I would share some of the rules we cook by:

"Teams may share cookers, but there will be no kicking, biting, hitting, eye gouging, clubbing or knifing if the cooking sources are shared."

"No foul or abusive language will be tolerated in English, German, Czechoslovakian or Spanish, but Caddoan is OK."

"The entries will be judged by six (6) judges selected by the Friends of the Cottonwood Ranch, and these judges will be age 16 years or over and sober."

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Old 09-25-2008, 03:47 AM
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Default Re: Cookin' with Wood

I'll give up my first place recipe for brisket from last year. I trim the big blob of fat out of the shoulder end. This leaves a "tunnel" through the meat when done properly. I inject the meat with a marinade of beef soup base disolved in 1/2 apple juice and 1/2 Boulvard Stout beer with granulated garlic, a little Louisianna Hot sauce, Worcesteshire and powdered black pepper. The surface is rubbed with granulated garlic, Lowry's Seasoned Salt, black pepper, Kitchen Bouquet, Worcesteshire and some beef soup base. Go easy on the salt!

I allow the injected meat to rest for about a half an hour and it goes into the 200 degree farenheit smoker for about 4 hours. At that point it is wrapped in heavy duty foil with a generous amount of Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ sauce and more Boulevard Stout. (I always leave a swig for the chef!) The Temp is maintained as close to 200 as possible for the next 22 hours, adding a little cold beer occasionally if the meat temp starts getting above 150. the last two hours I boost the temp to 225.

To present, I cut the brisket in half and then slice the best side on the bias very thin. This leaves tender slices for judging that show the smoke ring and there is no need to add sauce as the meat is very juicy from all the beer.

I don't think that any of my competitors are Festool users, but I'm not worried; there is a lot of finesse that cannot be explained and the judges can be fickle. I might try one more secret ingedient this year just for fun... :p
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Last edited by Wonderwino; 09-25-2008 at 03:52 AM.
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Old 09-25-2008, 07:30 PM
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Default Re: Cookin' with Wood

Quote:
Originally Posted by BobSwenson View Post
Wonderwino,
Opened up an 1981 bottle of Grand Vin de Chateau Latour.
Hows that grab you ? Or as a Texas oil man once said to me "Hows that fit your pistol"
The other Wino.
Bob
I wish I had a pistol (to shoot myself??)
What am I doing wrong here in France that I can only dream of drinking Château Latour? I reckon an 81 Latour must be about $250 a bottle over there??? Of course if it had been a 1982 that Bob was drinking I might have had to borrow someone else's pistol .

For my 40th birthday I offered myself and the other half a bottle of Haut Brion of the same age. Being born in '61 has at least one advantage! Way things are going here at the moment I wish I'd sold it and hidden the money under the mattress !!

We had a barbeued sea bass tonight, but I think it will be the last time we eat dinner outside this year - its about 35 degrees farenheit outside now (8.15pm)

We're very keen on the idea of getting a smoker - any recommendations?
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Old 09-25-2008, 09:52 PM
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Default Re: Cookin' with Wood

Over here in the US, Several brands of "pellet grills" are available that burn wood pellets. The results are usually quite good. They cost form $700-$2,500 and the pellets are a little pricey. Traeger grills are the most popular around here.

Us county folk build our own smokers with old propane tanks, trailer house axels, expanded metal and other iron junk that fits the purpose. It's a lot cheaper until you consider the plasma cutter and the heavy-duty wire welder into the mix. But as Festooligans, who looks at the cost of tools?

By the way, I never cook with and rarely drink wine over $19.99.
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