If you had great smoked BBQ you’d certainly know what is so special about it. If we didn’t think it was special we wouldn’t have opened Charlie and Jake’s here in Melbourne, Florida. Yep, in Huntington, Alabama, where our founders come from, they love a good BBQ. When they came here they opened our BBQ restaurant so we could share the great food and so we could all eat it ourselves whenever we want to, just like back home. [Read more…] about What Makes Smoked BBQ So Special?
BBQ is an inherent part of American culture. No matter where you grew up, chances are you have been to many BBQ parties and night outs. Whether it is chicken, pork or beef, nobody can pass the opportunity to eat good BBQ. It is what makes families come together and have a great time. BBQ is the kind of food that stimulates passion and brings out the child in all of us. We argue over its preparation methods, the type of coal used, the type of meat to be cooked, safety measures taken, and enjoy ourselves to the fullest. It is a time of celebration and brings everyone together.
That is why a number of BBQ events and festivals are held all around the US. It does not matter where your preferences lie, you are sure to find one that is to your liking. Here are a few upcoming BBQ events that might want you to reconsider your vacation plans.
Delaware State Fair
The Delaware State Fair is a triple threat festival of BBQ, beer, and music. It is going to be held on the 11th – 12th April 2014 in Harrington, DE at the Delaware state fairgrounds. It is the ultimate feast where all fun and food lovers collide. It is a Kansas City Barbecue Society sanctioned event. It is a BBQ completion and an opportunity for BBQ lovers to have a great time.
The competition is divided in a number of categories namely beef brisket, pork ribs, chicken, pork, people’s choice, and amateur backyard BBQ. Each category has a first place prize of $1,000, second place prize of $500, and a third place prize of $250. The reserve champion gets a prize of $1,300 and the grand champion gets to take home $2,500.
Grillin in Grafton
Grillin in Grafton is a free family BBQ festival and competition. It is going to be held on the 27th – 28th June 2014 in Grafton, WI at the Centennial Park. There is more BBQ here than you can handle. The event kicks off around the afternoon and goes on throughout the day. There will be many vendors of BBQ to satisfy your hunger for any and all kinds of meat. And to top it all, there will be a firework show and “holidaze” parade after the event. So come and join this festival with all your family members.
Keepers of the Fire
Keepers of the Fire is a BBQ contest that is going to be held on the 7th – 8th June 2014 at the Prairie Band Casino and Resort RV Park. This is a family event where you enjoy mouth watering BBQ, cool beverages, and lots of entertainment.
The categories of the competition include individual cooking, people’s choice contest, wild cook off contest, steak cook off, and best sauce (mild & hot). The first place prize for each category ranges from $350 to $500. The open reserve grand champion gets $2,500 and the open grand champion gets to take home a whopping $5,000. So don’t forget to sign up and bring your family for a memorable BBQ experience.
Telling whether the ribs are ready is one of the most difficult tasks any chef faces. This is because ribs come in many thicknesses and weights. Keeping the grill at an even temperature is in itself a difficult task. Therefore, here are some tips and guidelines to let you know when your ribs are perfectly cooked.
Difference between Ready And Done
Ribs are done when they are at an internal temperature of 63°C. However, they may still be tough at this temperature and not provide you with the required juiciness. If you take the temperature above a notch to 82°C and hold the ribs there for about 30 minutes, the fat melts some more and makes them more juicy and tender. This is the point at which they are ready.
Ribs Should Not Fall Off The Bone
Perfectly cooked ribs never fall of the bone. The only ribs that do are either boiled or steamed. Boiling or steaming ribs usually deprives them of their flavor and gives them a mushy texture. Perfectly cooked ribs are easy to pull from the bone with your teeth. It might still have some resilience but will not be tough.
How To Tell When They Are Ready
The exact cooking time for ribs depends upon a number of variables since every grill and smoker is different, and every piece of meat is different. The objective is to get the meat at 77°C to 83°C. It is difficult to get an accurate measurement of temperature through a thermometer because the meat is thin, both the meat and bone have different temperatures and the temperature varies from end to end. Here are a few tests you can use to see if your ribs are cooked perfectly.
The Bend Test
This is one the most accurate methods to test whether your ribs are ready. Pick up the ribs with a pair of tongs and shake them slightly. If they are ready, then the ribs would bend slightly and the skin would start to crack. A little crack means that you need to cook it a little further. This might take some practice to master.
The Twist Test
Grab the tip of the bone from the middle and twist it. If it starts to separate from the meat, that means that the ribs are cooked. Otherwise, they are not.
The Taste Test
This test implies to pull a bone off the end and then taste it. This works fine as you get to taste your cooked food. The problem arises when it is undercooked. Then you have to repeat the same procedure until you are satisfied. Just make sure there is something left for the guests.
The Toothpick Test
In this test, one pokes a toothpick into the meat between the bones. If it slides in with little or no resistance, then the ribs are cooked. Test different parts of the ribs as well, to ensure that you have cooked them to your preference.