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Russell and Jane's Barbeque Page

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A California "City Boy" Learns To Barbeque "Southern Style"

Russell and our #2800 Hondo™ made by the New Braunfels Smoker Company (43k)

Pit Master Russell

When we first bought our BBQ, a #2800 Hondo™ made by the New Braunfels Smoker Company (that's it, behind Russell, in the photo above), we had no idea what we were getting into...

Sure, we loved to eat at the "Red Hot & Blue" restaurants, but we didn't know how they made the pulled pork BBQ taste so good. But when we read the instructions that came with the smoker, we began to realize that the secret ingredient was TIME.

The booklet that came with the BBQ recommended the book "Smoke & Spice" by Cheryl Alters Jamison and Bill Jamison, published by The Harvard Common Press of Boston, Massachusetts, for recipes and BBQ lore.

We purchased it right away and chose our favorite recipes from it. After a couple of practice runs we got the hang of it, and now we are confident enough to invite our best friends to enjoy a day of comraderie, good food, libations, and music, topped off with pig pulling and the best BBQ we ever ate.

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Weekends are made for BBQ.

We learned most of what we know about barbeque from the "Smoke & Spice" book, and we heartily recommend it to anyone that doesn't yet know the difference between barbequing and grilling, and everyone else interested in learning more about the history and methods of a real barbeque.

We also recommend the #2800 Hondo™ made by the New Braunfels Smoker Company. It has served us well and I expect it will continue to do so for a long time. Be sure and get the optional thermometer, it is an absolute necessity.

We started off with a Boston Butt ("pig") of about eight pounds, and it came out good, but not great. We knew we could do better. We tried again with a pig of about seven pounds, and it was much better. Then we tried with a nine pounder, and it was very good, but it took forever to get done! When we tried a six pounder, we didn't have to wait so long for the pig to get done, and it was great. Now we get two pigs, each of about five or six pounds, and there is plenty of meat for everyone, and if we start it early (about seven a.m.), it gets done by supper time.

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The night before the barbeque, rub down the pigs with your preferred rub.

We use "The Renowned Mr. Brown" rub recipe on page 58 of "Smoke & Spice" for our rub.

We follow this recipe closely, and it never lets us down. (It is spicy!)

(Be sure to wear your best apron!)

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Here's another, closer look. (Note the peony blossom.)

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Warm up the BBQ before the pigs go on.

The thermometer is an important tool, use it to keep the cooking low and slow!

It takes a long time (about an hour and a half per pound) at a low temperature (about 200°) to make the pork tender and tasty.

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Russell mops the "pigs" every hour, using the "Southern Sop" mop recipe, also on page 58.

This keeps the pigs moist and adds an extra spicy vinegar flavor to "Mr. Brown", the dark, smokey outside part of the barbequed pig.

For fuel, we use Hickory wood "slabs". They're about five inches in diameter, and an inch or two thick. You can see the sacks they come in, below the BBQ.

(Check out them legs!)

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The cooking is so slow that you start to look forward to the hourly mopping!

Russell uses a cotton mop that can be purchased at barbeque and kitchen shops.

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After about only 8 hours, the first little piggie is done!

(Check out the bandana Russell uses to keep the sun off his neck.)

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After about another hour, the second little piggie is done, too!

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Hot off the BBQ, Russell can't wait for it to cool!

(Can you see Peepers, the little yellow faced parakeet, peeping out of her tube on her cage behind Russell? Click on the picture for a better view.)

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Much better than any fowl thing the Colonel ever made!

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Princess Jane demonstrates her prize winning pig pulling technique.

Jane prefers "Miss White", the moist, tender, milder flavored interior meat. She likes to use a variety of "store bought" tomato based sauces. Her current favorite is "Mojo Mild", which we buy from the "Red Hot & Blue" restaurant.

Russell likes a thin, vinegery Carolina style sauce, so we make the "Vaunted Vinegar Sauce" from page 292 of "Smoke & Spice". We drop a couple of fresh, home grown cayenne peppers to soak in the sauce bottle, it makes the bottled sauce look nice and adds extra heat!

Of course. it wouldn't be a barbeque without the trimmings! Jane makes the best Cole Slaw, Baked Beans and Potato Salad, all from her Southern Family recipes.

Another good book of BBQ recipes and information which we recommend is "Barbecue Greats Memphis Style" by Carolyn Wells, published by Pig Out Publications.

Our library also includes books about grilling called "Chicken and Other Poultry (Grill by the Book)" published by Sunset Publishing Corporation and "The Barbecue Cookbook" published by Oxmoor House.

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You can buy great spices at great prices at The Great American Spice Company.

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