An Introduction to Easy Barbeque Recipes
written by: Christine Szalay-Kudra
Barbeque, which can also be spelt barbecue, bar-b-q or BBQ, is the oldest cooking method. Although the word simply means ‘to grill’ in some parts of the world (for example, in the UK) barbequing and grilling are not interchangeable terms in the US because these cooking methods differ.
Grilling usually means to cook food quickly over a gas, charcoal or electric grill, while barbecue involves cooking food outdoors by smoking it over a charcoal grill.
Barbeque uses less heat than grilling and some BBQ recipes even take hours to cook. You can barbeque a whole hog, for example, but you could not grill it over a hot grill because the outside would be burnt to a crisp while the inside would still be raw.
Brief History of BBQ
The word barbecue translates as ‘sacred fire pit’ and a traditional ‘barbacoa’ involved digging a hole in the ground and putting a whole goat or pig on a platform over the hole.
The hole would have been filled with coal and maguey leaves which were then set on fire. The animal would take several hours to cook and there would have been a pot underneath to catch the juices, which would then be made into a tasty broth.
The word barbacoa comes from ‘barabicu’ found in the Caribbean Taino culture and also the Timucua of Florida. When this word reached Europe it because ‘barbacoa’ and finally barbeque. It is believed that the word and cooking technique started in the Caribbean initially and then spread to Europe and finally the United States.
Necessary Tools for Barbequing
So what do you need to start? A charcoal grill is the bare minimum you will need to flame-cook your food, at least if you want to do it the authentic way. Sprinkling liquid smoke on your food and then cooking it over a gas or electric grill is not going to produce good results, so if you do not already have a good charcoal grill now is the time to get one.
You will also need grilling equipment such as long-handled tongs, a brush to clean the grate, charcoal and perhaps woodchips, and whatever else you wish to add. If you only have the grill and the charcoal, you can start with those and add to your barbecue utensil collection later. You might even wish to invest in a smoker if you find you cannot get enough of the wonderful barbecue flavor.
Different Types of Barbecue Recipes
Although meats like pork, chicken and beef are often the first to come to mind when thinking about barbeque, there are plenty of other recipes you can try, using ingredients such as seafood, vegetables or even certain types of cheese. Try Kung Pao shrimp or Halloumi cheese for example, or barbecue a homemade pizza.
Some of these recipes are slowly smoked all day and others take much less time to cook. BBQ side dishes can be cooked on the grill or prepared in advance and kept chilled until the main dish is ready to serve. There is a wealth of barbeque recipes though as you will discover, all ready for you to explore and make yourself.
Thanks for dropping by today. Bon appétit, and thanks for visiting!
Christine and Everyone here at Easy Barbeque Recipes
Featured Barbecue Recipe
Ultimate Sticky Baby Back Ribs
Using too much heat when cooking ribs is a surefire way to dry them out, so instead of grilling or baking your ribs, cook them over a barbecue for a superior flavor and incredible juiciness. Learning how to barbeque ribs means you can make your next gathering a real gourmet feast.
As well as your ingredients you will need wood chips, a thermometer and a long-handled pair of tongs. You will need a couple of aluminum pans too, like cake pans or similar. These will be filled with liquid and the resulting steam will infuse the ribs with moisture and help to lock in the juices.
Hickory, maple, cherry, alder or apple wood chips are especially good with ribs. Adding woodchips direct to the coals will release plenty of flavor, but if you want extra smoke you can wrap a couple of cups of woodchips in aluminum foil and poke some holes in the packages. Add those to the coals. To add even more flavor, brush BBQ sauce over the ribs occasionally as they cook. This is not essential because they will be very juicy anyway, but you can add the sauce if you just cannot get enough of the BBQ flavor.
The homemade rib rub recipe contains plenty of brown sugar, making it a very tasty sweet rub. Sweet rubs are not recommended for hot and quick cooking because the sugar will burn, so barbequing is ideal. You will use about half the rub so you can make a smaller quantity if you like, else just save the remainder for next time. This recipe is incredibly good so there will definitely be a next time!
Pop the ribs directly on the grate or use a rib rack if you prefer. When barbecuing the ribs, the temperature needs to stay around 225 degrees F for the best results, so use a thermometer and keep an eye on it. Close the bottom vent holes if the temperature gets too high or open them if it drops too much. They should always be at least partly open.
The ribs will take about 4 hours to cook. If you prefer to use St Louis cut ribs or spare ribs, allow 5 hours. If you are cooking at a high altitude you will probably have to add an extra hour to the total time.
- 3 lbs baby back ribs
- Apple juice, wine, beer or water, as needed
- For the Spice Rub:
- ½ tablespoon garlic powder
- ½ tablespoon onion powder
- 2 tablespoons paprika
- ½ tablespoon black pepper
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ½ tablespoon salt
- ½ tablespoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon cayenne
- Remove the membrane from the bone side of the ribs by slipping a butter knife under it and then pulling it off.
- Combine the garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, black pepper, sugar, salt, chili powder and cayenne to make the rub.
- Shake some of the rub on to one side of the meat and then rub it in using your hands.
- Turn the ribs over and repeat on the other side.
- Refrigerate the ribs until you are ready to cook them.
- Soak wood chips in water for half an hour.
- Arrange 25 to 30 charcoal briquettes pyramid-style on one side of the grill.
- Add ½ cup of lighter fluid and let it soak in, then use a long-handled lighter to light the coals.
- Allow the flame to die down, then put the drip pan on the other side of the grill.
- Rearrange the charcoal using long-handled tongs so it covers one side of the grill.
- Take the ribs out of the refrigerator and allow them to reach room temperature.
- When most of the coals are covered in gray ash, drop a handful of wood chips on top of them.
- Fill the drip pan ⅔ full with beer, apple juice or your chosen liquid, and add some herbs and/or spices too if you wish.
- Put the grate back on the grill and put another pan over the coals.
- Fill it with hot water.
- Put the ribs on the grate.
- Have the top and bottom vents half-open and put the lid down so the top vent holes are positioned over the meat.
- The temperature should stay around 225 degrees F so use a thermometer to keep check.
- Add 6 charcoal briquettes to the fire every 45 minutes or so, as well as some more woodchips.
- When the internal temperature of the ribs reaches 180 degrees they are done.
- The ribs will take about 4 hours to cook.
Although brushing the ribs with BBQ sauce is optional, many backyard chefs enjoy adding extra flavor and succulence by doing this. When done, the ribs should be falling-apart tender and the flavor should be incredible. Ribs are the holy grail of barbequing and if you can barbecue ribs you can barbecue anything. Try this recipe but remember the ribs need to slow-cook on the grill for about 4 hours, so fire up the grill well in advance. The aroma of the baby back ribs will be amazing and the flavor is going to be out of this world.
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