Tag Archives: Barbecue

This is why you’re fat

24 Mar

Have you visited the website “This is why you’re fat“?  Well, they sure do have some wonderful ideas on how to turn dreams into heart attacks.

Although my heart has already shown some signs of complaint, after seeing some of the wonderful pictures they have on the site I’ve decided to take my shot on the subject.

To tell you the whole story I have to confess that the final inspiration came from a show by Bobby Flay I happen to have watched on the net a few weeks ago, as he is not presenting his skills on Brazilian television.  That was the first, as well as the one and only show by Bobby Flay I have ever watched (please, don’t ask me for the season and episode number, as I don’t have the slightest idea).  On that show, Mr. Flay and a female guest (famous???????, not on this side of the world) each prepared his/her own version of an American classic:  hamburgers.  Here is my version (clearly inspired on theirs):

1.  A homemade bun. I used a classical and rustic bread recipe – take a look at “Our Daily Bread“. They didn’t mention, but I bet the production bought theirs on a supermarket just around the corner – not as good though;

2.  Butter fried onions to which I added my secret BBQ sauce recipe.  I say “secret” because it seems every American man (and I bet quite a few women too) seems to have his own secret recipe.  Mine is simple: catchup, some water, apple cider vinegar, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, chilli sauce and some Kentucky Bourbon (after all it’s an American sauce);

3.  Pork and beef hamburgers (1:1) seasoned with some salt and chopped spring onions;

4. Slices of cheddar cheese;

5.  Fried slices of bacon;

6. Lettuce;

7. Tomatoes;

8. Homemade onion rings (flour, salt, pepper, baking powder, 1 well beaten egg with some milk)

8. Freshly prepared mayonese (2 egg yolks – one raw and one boiled – Dijon mustard to taste, few drops of lemon, pinch of salt, whisk oil into the mixture a few drops at a time – keep it smooth).

This is why you're fat - My version of an American classic

Man, let me tell you…that was good, specially considering it was eaten with some cold Mexican beer with a slice of lime.

Hamburgers on FoodistaHamburgers

That’s BBQ

16 Nov

I’ve read dozens of blog posts about barbecue and the art of cooking various types of meat with the heat produced by a wooden fire or with the use of charcoal. I’ve even written a few lines myself on this subject (see From the heart, “Churrasco” – the Brazilian BBQ and Parrillada in Uruguay). Nevertheless, nothing prepared me for what I saw last Sunday – a gigantic BBQ made with around 1,500 pounds of ribs by my friend Tito. Yes, that’s right, 1,500 pounds of ribs, not to mention the additional 100 pounds of various other cuts and sausages.

This BBQ, or “churrasco de chão” in Portuguese, is a typical “gaucho” preparation, and can be found throughout the pampas region, from Southern Brazil to Southern Argentina (where it’s known as “asado”). Whole ribs ( or “rib windows” as they are called in this area of Brazil), each one weighting around 20 pounds, are placed in vertical iron spikes which are then stuck into the ground at a certain distance from a huge open air fire.

The only seasoning employed was coarse sea salt, and around 25 pounds of it were consumed.

Coarse sea salt was the only seasoning used

Seasoning - coarse sea salt only

The fire was lit around 7:00 a.m. and the meat started to cook around one hour later, when the 5 cubic meters of wood had already produced a nice amount of charcoal.

Overview - BBQ with 1,500 pounds of ribs

Overview - around 1,500 pounds of ribs being grilled

Just before serving, around 4 hours later, the salt was beaten off the meat and the “windows” cut into small pieces by skilful “gauchos”.

batendosal

Ready to serve.

tito

Tito (Gabriel Molon) proud of his BBQ

I should mention that I don’t recommend you to try this at home, unless you can guarantee that: (1) You have a huge enough garden where you can set tables for around 1,000 people, (2) The process is going to be coordinated by a professional who makes a living preparing food for the crowds, like my friend Tito.

Watch a video of the event on YouTube.

Barbecuing on Foodista

From the heart

20 Oct

How about a food that is low in sodium, as well as a good source of folate, pantothenic acid, phosphorus and copper, and a very good source of protein, riboflavin, vitamin B12, iron and zinc? Well, nothing is perfect, it has also a high cholesterol content. But, to compensate that, besides being very nutritious it’s also dam tasty.

Chicken hearts, that’s what I’m talking about. In Brazil, they are a mandatory presence in a BBQ, as appetizers, specially in the southern areas of the country.

Chicken hearts

Chicken hearts

Last Sunday I took 1,0 kg (around 2,0 pounds) of chicken hearts, trimmed the excess fat (remember, it’s high in cholesterol), seasoned with salt and pepper, and placed them in a special device I received as a gift from my friend Renan. It’s like a cylindric grill that you fill with chicken hearts and place over the fire turning around now and then to get an even cooking.

Speciall grill for chicken hearts

Cylindric grill for chicken hearts (Posing for pictures out of the fire. Yes, that on the back are pork ribs)

After around 45-60 min they are ready. In Brazil we usually serve them with manioc flour and an ice cold beer (even though I prefer a red wine).

Grilled chicken hearts with manioc flour

Grilled chicken hearts with manioc flour

Ok, let’s assume you don’t have such a cylindric grill, nor a Brazilian style BBQ pit, but you still would like to try some chicken hearts (and I recommend you to do that). Then maybe you can take a look at the 1956 grilled chicken heart recipe from the father of American gastronomy, James Beard (yes, some of us have heard of him in Brazil).

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Chicken Heart on Foodista

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