Tuesday, April 17, 2007

BBQ vs. Grilling: Know the difference!

Some say that Memorial Day is the official opening of grilling and BBQing season, but that must be in regions of the world that don't experience winter and spring the way we do. Here the Weber stands accusingly in a snow drift on the patio for three months, so as soon as we can go outside bareheaded, we like to buy a bag of charcoal and let 'er rip.

Let it be said here: This should be the year that you take it up a notch and learn the difference between grilling and BBQing. BBQing is long, slow cooking over indirect heat--you stack the coals on one side of the grill, and throw your ribs or brisket on the other side for at least two hours. Use coals, no lighter fluid.

Any simple-minded Promethean can grill; all it requires is a match and a spatula. It's instant gratification, but it's not all that different from broiling in your oven or searing on your stove. (By the way, women now do almost half the grilling in America; BBQ remains the domain of a handful of men. C'mon, ladies--bring those tongs outside and stay for a while!)

The key to BBQ is, of course, what you choose to cook. Anything that tastes good smoked will work, but our most recent favorite is Texas ribs--unique toothsome beef ribs that are hard to find in butcher shops around town. Kowalski's consistently impresses us in the meat department, and if you make special requests for special cuts, they respond generously.

Kowalski's Markets, http://www.kowalskis.com/