This weekend every year, families often gather together to give thanks to that loving woman who either brought them into this world and/or the brave woman who delivered their children. We spend a lot of time on this site discussing some of the toughest humans who walk the planet and play football in the NFL, but I would argue that mothers are darn tough humans as well. There is no way to thank them enough for all that they endure each day to try and shape the next generation into decent members of society.
For the first weekend in months, I finally have some free time on my hands. It's not in my nature to sit idle, so I started looking around for projects to do before the Texas heat sets in for the long brutal humid summers we endure along The Gulf Coast. One project I am trying to get to is refinishing my front door. That will take a couple of days and requires dry weather. With the potential for some rain today through Sunday, that one will have to wait. Nothing would upset my wife more than to have a garage filled with sawdust, stain and varnish while the only thing separating the inside of the house and stormy weather is a poorly fitted sheet of plastic where the front door belongs.
Then I remembered that I just took delivery of a new smoker, and I need to get it broken-in and properly seasoned in order to provide good eats for years to come. The next couple of months will be my version of BBQ Training Camp to parallel the Houston Texans activities. They'll break in the rookies, and I'll break in a couple of hundred pounds of deliciously BBQ'd meat.
Since I'll be experimenting to find just the right amount of coals, wood and proper ventilation settings for this new unit to nail the right temps for slow-smoking, I figured it was also a good time to dust off an article that MDC wrote a few years ago on the subject. It is by far the most comprehensive information I ever had the pleasure of reading on BBQ. It's also quite entertaining in the style that is so unique to MDC. This article includes information on technique, the science behind BBQ, and tips on different meats: brisket, ribs, pork, chicken, etc.
Here's a taste from the article...
BBQ Brisket Fat Side Down
Also --- and here’s where I commit a bit of BBQ blasphemy --- because of the grain structure and the density of the brisket, there is no need to cook it fat side up. All the fat that renders off the fat cap is going to run off the outside of the meat rather than soaking in like a pork butt's fat will. Conversely, by cooking it fat-side down, you have a barrier on the bottom to prevent some of the brisket’s own juices from escaping. So, by cooking it fat side down, you aren't sacrificing moisture, and you are preventing the brisket from leaking its internal moisture. That’s a win-win, baby.
I hope you enjoy reading it, and perhaps it will help you to fine-tune your own BBQ efforts or to stretch your skills to attempt something new. Maybe it will even inspire you to BBQ this weekend with family and friends. That's my plan!
Have a great weekend! Happy Mother's Day to those who have earned the tremendous honor! Go Texans!