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The Art of BBQ

Updated on February 17, 2018

The Art of BBQ

BBQ has always been a popular way to prepare food. Whether directly over the flames, in a grill or pit. The Pit and Open flame BBQ of the whole pig has been popular for many centuries. Pit BBQ is still a popular way to cook pigs in Hawaii. The pig is rubbed with dry seasoning. Some also prefer to dig a large hole, and place the pig inside tightly covered or in a special pan. The meat is covered with flavorful wood or coals and the fire lit. Pit BBQ cooking takes several hours and is still used to cook fish, lamb, pig and mutton.

In the Wild West, BBQ was a popular and easy way to cook meat on the prairies when out rustling the herd or cow punching. The Old Western style of BBQ had an apparatus hanging far above the flame with pots and pans dangling over the flames. Some still prefer to cook vegetables outside over the flame much like they did in the old west. BBQ Corn on the Cob in the husk is still a favorite BBQ treat in our home.NOTE RECIPE...

The heat or flames of the BBQ can come from a variety of sources. Many prefer to use a BBQ Grill. The meat or vegetables are cooked using the heat of the fire or flame. Grilling can be done using an electric, gas, propane, smoke box, or smoke house grill. Grilling is usually a quicker process than the old Pit BBQ methods. Grilling meat cooks with high heat usually sitting on a grate directly above hot flames or covered in intense heat from gas, propane, charcoal, or smoking wood placed over hot charcoal. Some prefer to slow cook their meat by placing the hot charcoal farther away from the meat or adding wet hard wood chunks to make smoke. Smoking the meat helps the covered meat cook slower. Some of the compounds in wood smoke act as a food preservative.

The chef begins the BBQ process by starting the fire using starter chips or small parts of soft wood. Once the flame is burning hot the chef will add the harder wood chips to keep the flames burning slowly. For example, the chef can take pieces of harder wood like Hickory or Maple and place it into water to soften. After it softens, the hard wood is placed over the hot burning flames of the fire causing smoke to rise. The smoking wood adds flavor to the meat and the wet wood cools the heat of the flame. The chef must keep a balance between heat and cool to cook the meat.

Popular wood to use for a BBQ is hickory, mesquite, oak, pecan, alder, maple, apple, cherry, and plum. Corn husks and tea have also been used. Hickory, maple, and corn husk smoke is generally used with BBQ pork like; ham and bacon. Tea has been used to smoke fish and mutton.

So the key to a good BBQ is the slow cooking? Well, we must not forget to mention the art of proper seasoning. The sauce can make or break a good barbeque menu. Most chefs baste the meat in a marinade or rub seasoning on the meat during preparation. Some chefs use commercial BBQ sauces and others invent their own sauce. Whatever the method, the sauce can make the BBQ!

Next are some of our family recipes I hope you enjoy!

P.S. Don't forget to wear the proper protection and get the correct utensils to make your BBQ experiences safe.

Our Family Grilling Suggestions

Easy BBQ Corn on the Cob


8 Corn on the cobs

1-1/2 cubes of butter or margarine melted

Salt and pepper to taste


Place corn in the cob in cold water for about 1/2 an hour to loosen the husks. Remove and peel the husk of the corn just enough to reveal the corn silk. Remove the corn silk and cover the corn with the husks. Place corn husks on the grill and leave for approximately 12 to 15 minutes. Add butter or margarine, salt and pepper to taste. Serves 4 to 6.

BBQ Hamburgers


2 lbs hamburger

1 onion, chopped

2 tbsp brown sugar

½ - ¾ cup catsup

2 tbsp vinegar

2 tsp prepared mustard

1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce

1 tsp salt


Place hamburger with onion slice on top on the grill. Meanwhile, add all other ingredients together to make a BBQ sauce. Fry onion and hamburger until browned then add sauce. Simmer about 15 to 20 minutes and serve on hamburger rolls. Serves 8.

BBQ Short Ribs


3 lbs. beef short ribs

1 tbsp. mustard

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. Worchester Sauce

1/2 c. ketchup

1 tbsp. flour

2 tbsp. chopped onion [prefer red]

1/2 tsp. pepper

1/2 c. sweet pickle juice

1 tbsp. Crisco


Place ribs on a tray. Combine other ingredients to make sauce and whip well. Using tongs, flip ribs into the sauce and place on the grill. Dab on more every 15 minutes while grilling ribs to desired doneness.

BBQ Chicken


6 Chicken Breasts

1 instant tomato Soup envelope [Lipton or Knorr]

1 tsp. paprika

1 tsp. salt

4 pkg. Good Season Italian Dressing

2 cups flour

Large self sealing plastic bag

Season All


Wash chicken breasts. Place other ingredients into sturdy plastic bag. Put one breast into the bag at a time and shake well until chicken is covered. Place chicken onto grill. Dab additional sauce on chicken as desired to keep breast moist.

BBQ Stuffed Flank Steak


2 lbs Flank steak

1 c. red wine

14 c. salad oil

1/2 tsp. salt

1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper

1/3 c A1 Sauce

1medium onion finely chopped

1-1/2 c. coarse bread crumbs or 1 pkg. stuffing mix [Mrs. Cubbinson's]

3 tbsp. butter



When you purchase the flank steak ask the butcher to cut a pocket in the steak and sore the surfaces. Combine A1 Sauce, wine, onion, oil, salt and pepper into a shallow glass pan whip well then cover. Put steak into marinade and into the fridge for a minimum of 2-3 hours or overnight. Prepare to grill the steaks by making the stuffing. In a bowl combine stuffing mix butter and onion then sauté in skillet to make it crisp. Remove the steak from the fridge and take out of the marinade. Place crisp stuffing into the pocket and put the steak on the grill. Using tongs, place on the grill for 10 minutes a side or until the steak reaches your desired doneness. Thinly slice steak with stuffing on the side. Serves 6.

BBQ Tri Tip


3 lb. Tri Tip

1 c. Kosher salt

1/2 c. crushed garlic or garlic powder

1 c. Pepper corn


Rolling pin


Put seasoning into a bowl and crush it together to make a paste. Rub and pound the seasoning into the meat using a rolling pin making sure that the meat is thoroughly covered. Place the meat on the grill and cook slowly. Brown meat on both sides until the meat is done in the center.

The flavor comes from the seasoning so make sure it is pounded and rubbed on well!

Texas BBQ Sauce

Hello folks, Mary sent in this BBQ sauce she states is sure to please because it is a family favorite.


1 qt beef broth

1 qt. pickle juice

2 small cans tomato paste

2 bottles tomato catsup

1/2 cup brown sugar

Salt and Pepper to taste

1/2 cup red pepper [optional]


Mix the ingredients in a pan and bring to a boil. Then simmer for 15 minutes or until slightly thickened.  Store left over in the refrigerator.

Bobby's 5 Star Smoked Rib Recipe

Are Insects Ruining Your BBQ?

Thought I'd attach a tip to help folks out when they want to enjoy the outdoors I learned from a pal a few years ago. If the bugs are bugging you and yours by flying and biting when you are outside, there is something you can do in advance to keep them away. It doesn't cost much and is not a poison and lasts a couple of days at a time.

Purchase a bottle of Listerine mouthwash and a 4 oz spray bottle or can. Fill it with Listerine and spray the area around your door frame, around the food table, near any standing water, near the playground, near the swings, near the nets, spray around the dog house, spray around the frames of your windows, and spray around the seats at the table. Don't spray directly on wooded items but nearby on the lawn and deck floor..

For some wonderful reason, voila, those flying pests are killed instantly and leave the area. Sure beats using toxic sprays and it works to kill those pesky mosquitoes.

Also, Get a big yellow bucket, fill it with water and lemon scented dishwashing soap and you will get rid of most flying gnat's also.

BBQ is Historic

Some trace it to the end of the 15th century, when Christopher Columbus brought a primitive sauce used for cooking Alpaca meat back from Hispaniola, while others place it at the formation of the first American colonies in the 17th century.

Barbecue has traditionally been a way for large groups to get together and enjoy outdoor fun and great eating.

Barbecue varies by region, with the four main styles named after their place of origin: Memphis, Tenn.; North Carolina; Kansas City; and Texas. Memphis is renowned for pulled pork-shoulder doused in sweet tomato-based sauce (eaten on its own or as a sandwich). North Carolina smokes the whole hog in a vinegar-based sauce. Kansas City natives prefers ribs cooked in a dry rub, and Texans love their beef.

Whether you are a BBQ expert or a beginner, hope this article has inspired you to keep the tradition going in your family.


Submit a Comment

  • Galadriel Arwen profile image

    Galadriel Arwen 6 years ago from USA

    Sending thanks from Mary!

  • profile image

    BFD 6 years ago

    VERY impressed with Mary's BBQ sauce. Tell her so from all of us at that we hope she brings that recipe out on the grilling road!

  • Galadriel Arwen profile image

    Galadriel Arwen 7 years ago from USA

    Glad to hear that the cattle rustlers had issues getting fed. Perhaps that is why they robbed the pioneers and their families to steal supper from them.

  • davidseeger profile image

    davidseeger 7 years ago from Bethany, OK

    Cattle rustlers didn't usually have time to stop to bbq a cow. Too likely someone is trying to track them down.

  • Galadriel Arwen profile image

    Galadriel Arwen 8 years ago from USA

    Can't wait!

  • Paul Edmondson profile image

    Paul Edmondson 8 years ago from Burlingame, CA

    I do love to make bbq sauces. This weekend I made three kinds. A rosemary beer butter sauce, a spicey bbq sauce and a raspberry bbq sauce to go on bbq chicken. I'll post the recipes soon:)

  • Galadriel Arwen profile image

    Galadriel Arwen 8 years ago from USA

    So Paul,

    Since you BBQ so often, how about sharing your secret for a good sauce?

  • Paul Edmondson profile image

    Paul Edmondson 8 years ago from Burlingame, CA

    bbqing is definitely an art. I do it almost three times a week:)


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