About Us

Joined by our passion for meat, beer, cards and meat, we created a compitition bbq team to partake in just that.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Stuffed Cheeseburgers!

Stuffed Cheeseburgers are easy to make and basically a blank protein canvas (Thanks Greg Rempe for the phrase).  The options to stuff burgers is limitless - whatever you can possibly imagine, you can jam between two patties of meat!
For today's stuffed burgers, I used ground chuck.  There is enough flavor in whatever you are stuffing to overcome any flavor shortcomings using a lesser grade meat but the ground chuck was perfect!  I stuffed these burgers today with bacon and blue cheese crumbles. 
The ingredient list is short - about 5lbs of ground chuck, 2lbs of bacon, and 12oz of blue cheese crumbles.  Add in some onion rolls and some extra slices of medium cheddar to top it off.  I added two eggs and some salt and pepper to the ground chuck for a little seasoning.
 I cooked up some thick cut bacon until it was pretty crispy then diced it up into small pieces. 
I added the eggs to a bowl, a few teaspoons of sea salt and course ground black pepper along with the meat and combined well.  I separated the 5lbs of ground chuck into 12 equal portions -each was rolled into a ball between the size of a golf ball and a base ball.  Lay out a long piece of wax paper and flatten the 12 balls into equal size patties.

Place a generous portion of blue cheese crumbles and diced bacon onto 6 of the 12 patties.  Then place its' twin onto it's buddy.
Press the edges together until they are sealed and then reform the patties into a ready for the grill piece of art work.
 For this cook I used my WSM 22.5 - the finest charcoal bullet smoker ever made - I added some chunks of apple wood and oak to get some really great depth of flavor into the meat.  I didn't use any dry rub on the outside of the meat for this cook letting the wood and the ingredients do the job.
Stuffed patties and sausage on the smoker!
 Since these were cooked on a smoker in indirect heat, I didn't have to worry about flare ups from the fat rendering from the meat.  If you were going to cook these on a gas grill or on a charcoal grill, I would try and sear each patty for a few minutes per side and then finish them on the indirect side so they come up to the desired internal temperature nice and slow.
Use a thermometer to check the internal temperature of the burger.  This one was pulled at 145F which is medium well.  Even at this internal temperature it was still pretty juicy.  I prefer mine a medium rare / rare and it was awesome!  Toast the bun on the smoker for a few minutes while the cheddar is melting on top of the burger and you are ready to eat!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Smoked Crab Salad Crostini

Here's a quick and easy appetizer that you can prep in 10 minutes, cook in 10 and be the star of the party with this one!

You can jam just about anything on a small slice of bread and look good. Let's take it a new, exotic level with some crab! The basic ingredients are a loaf of bread or a baguette and some imitation crab meat. I know - imitation crab meat is tasteless and gross. It is more like a blank slate with some texture that you can make taste like anything you want.

I made this two ways with the only difference is swapping the mayo with sour cream. The ingredient list I used in this recipe was going for fresh and spicy. I used a rustic Parmesan loaf but a baguette would be just as good. The fresh green onions and Roma tomatoes with a few savory ingredients were a great combination - and then - I threw in the Trader Joe's 21 Gun Salute for a great hit of spice and heat.

  • Imitation Crab Meat - 1lb

  • Green Onions - 1 bunch

  • Roma Tomato - 2

  • Capers - 1 tablespoon

  • Worchestire Sauce - 1 tablespoon

  • Ground Chipotle Powder - 1 teaspoon

  • Mayo - about 2 table spoons
or swap out the mayo for sour cream.

Rough dice the crab meat and vegetables.

Fine dice the onions and then combine all the ingredients in a bowl.

The bowl on the left has mayo and the bowl on the right used sour cream. The mayo mixture was a bit darker for some reason.

Slice the bread and add a big spoon of the mix onto each slice.

I heated these up on my Traeger Pellet Smoker at 250F for about 10 minutes or until the bread is a little crisp. You can also bake these in the oven or indirect heat on a charcoal or gas grill. Don't cook this over direct heat or the bread will burn. Another ingredient that would make this snack even better is some fresh grated Parmesan or cheddar.

The great thing about this recipe is you can create just about any flavor profile because the crab meat is a blank slate. Let's eat!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Grilled Lettuce

That's right! You heard it here! Big Daddy eats lettuce even though lettuce is the Devil. Technically lettuce is a gateway vegetable - not the Devil. This recipe is perfect for a main course or to make a quick side that seems WAY fancier than it really is.

There are three basic ingredients for this recipe:
Romaine Hearts
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Your favorite dry rub - in this case I used two of my favorites:

Simply Marvelous Sweet Seduction - seriously - if you haven't tried these rubs you are missing out. Do yourself a favor and get the sample pack. These rubs go great on everything from ribs to chicken to.... well.... lettuce!

The Rub Co Santa Maria Style dry rub. The Rub Co is another must have in every spice cabinet. A sample pack of these rubs will have you making restaurant style food that has the basics turbo boosted to a whole new flavor level!

Chop off the bottom of the romaine heart, spread open and rinse.

Unfurl the lettuce head. Don't worry about the residual water left in the head of lettuce. Drizzle on a few tablespoons of olive oil onto each lettuce head.

Shake on a good dose of the dry rub of your choice. If you don't have one of the dry rubs I've recommended, make up your own dry rub with your own flavors - maybe some salt, pepper, garlic, and a touch of brown sugar.

Fold the lettuce back up as tight as possible but do not tie shut. Place the lettuce heads on a grill or smoker pre-heated to 250F and cook indirectly. Do not cook over direct heat. If you are using a smoker, then you are already set up for indirect heat. On a charcoal grill, bank the coals on one side and cook the lettuce on the opposite side. If you are using a gas grill, turn all the burners on high heat to pre-heat the grill for about 5 minutes. When you are ready to cook the lettuce, turn one side off and the other side on low. Put the lettuce heads on the side with the heat off. Cook for about 5 minutes.

You don't want the lettuce to wilt but if it chars a bit on the outside, this is fine. Let the lettuce heads rest on the cutting board for no more than a few minutes otherwise it will wilt and lose some crunch.

Do a course chop and add whatever you like on a salad. Here I've added some hard salami and blue cheese crumbles. No need to add any dressing. The olive oil and dry rub with the residual water left in the lettuce head provide plenty of moisture and flavor. Dig in - Let's eat!