Feb 24 2006

Deviled Eggs with Pig Powder

Jim “Trim” Tabb is an icon on the BBQ Trail. Today the General and his little woman had lunch with Jim and his lovely bride Kathleen. We spent a lot of time talking about this blog and Jim offered to share his Deviled Egg recipe.

Jim manufactures a wonderful rub called “Pig Powder.”


It is an all purpose rub that goes well on all sorts of foods…including deviled eggs! You sprinkle it over the completed eggs, jut like paprika!

If you purchase it, watch out…you will be trying it on everything!

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A modified recipe of the one below is published in the Kansas City Barbeque Society Cookbook.

Recipe for Deviled Eggs:

6 hard-cooked eggs, cut into halves

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 T sweet pickle relish

1/2 t Worcestershire sauce

1/2 t fenugreek (a type of curry powder)

1/4 t salt

1/4 t dry mustard

1/8 t freshly ground pepper

1/8 t sugar

1/8 t Tabasco sauce

Pig Powder to taste

Remove yolks carefully from eggs, reserving whites. Combine egg yolks, mayonnaise, pickle relish, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, fenugreek, salt, dry mustard, pepper, sugar, and Tabasco sauce in bowl, stirring with a fork until mixed. Spoon egg yolk mixture into white halves; sprinkle with Pig Powder. Arrange on serving platter. Chill, covered, until serving time. May thicken egg yolk mixture with instant potatoes or fine dry bread crumbs.

If you want large quantities, fax orders to 828-859-9918 ! (Minimum order is a 12 count case of 12 ounce bottles.)

By the way, Pig Powder received 1st Place in 2006 NBBQA Award of Distinction for its label and it was named “Best Rub on the Planet” in 2001.

Feb 24 2006

Chef Eddie's Own Deep Fried Macaroni

Chef Eddie from Tommy Gunns , in Philadelphia, PA has graciously shared his famous deep fried macaroni recipe with The General.


Make your own baked macaroni and cheese. Chef Eddie suggests using monterey jack, sharp cheddar and colby cheeses as well as aged cheddar.

After baking, let your mac and cheese set for 8 hours in fridge.

Use a 4″ round cutter and cut out rounds of mac and cheese….think about the shape of a tall crab cake.

Bread in a standard breading station:

seasoned flour, seasoned egg wash, and seasoned bread crumbs or cornflakes. Then double dip in the egg wash and bread crumbs/cornflake mixture.

Deep fry in a frier (or your iron skillet) at 375* for 3-4 min until golden brown.

If your rounds are very thick, the center may not get warm enough, so you can microwave them for 15 – 20 seconds.

As Chef Eddie says, “They are nice and crispy on outside and inside…cheese is gushing out!”

The little woman says The General has to try this recipe as soon as we get back to Savannah! Yum! Can’t wait!!

Feb 24 2006

Enhanced meats

Which steak would you buy ?

21Meat.1841…ok, so you figure it is a trick question…it is a trick…but on us!! Do you know what the meat packers are doing to our meat before we buy it? Supposedly it does not harm us…

Thanks to Juggy at the BBQ Forum for alerting us to the news! Read his post So which steak looks the freshest?

This is the complete
Washington Post Article.

Feb 23 2006

The Ultimate Cooking School

The General is reporting from the NBBQA convention in Knoxville, TN. Today I had the chance to sit and visit with BBQ Legend Myron Mixon of the BBQ team “Jack’s Old South” based in Vienna, GA. He and his business partner, James Britt of “Britt’s Barbecue” from McCalla, AL, have created the Ultimate Cooking School which is guaranteed to put competition chefs and teams on the fast track to winning contests.


Myron Mixon

They host the
Ultimate Cooking School three times a year in different locations throughout the USA. The next school session will be held in Cordele, GA, at the Georgia State Park at Lake Blackshear on March 24 & 25. The cost is $500 per person.

The General thinks $500 is a big chunk of change, but in this case, I think it is a bargain!

Ultimate Cooking School students not only learn from the “masters,” but they also get the “hands on” experience of scheduling cooking times, preparing sauces, injections, rubs and marinades, prepping meats, and building blind boxes. They even cover which parts of the whole hog should be pulled for submission in the blind box.

Believe me, the General wishes he and the missus had the opportunity to attend a school like this when we were starting out on the BBQ circuit!

Feb 20 2006

Carnival of the Recipes #79

The Ministry of Minor Perfidy hosts the seventy-ninth edition of Carnival of the Recipes.

It is the first time the General has submitted a recipe to the Carnival…and it was accepted! Gracias!

Feb 20 2006

Smoked rack of lamb with orange marmalade.

Our friend Sandra came here from Atlanta for a basket weaving weekend. She needed the help of the missus to complete her 10″ Nantucket Lightship basket purse that they have been trying to complete for a few years. It’s amazing…they lived three miles apart in Atlanta and were unable to get together there…so now that 275 miles separates them, they made the time to complete it. Go figure!!


It was just like a Santa’s little workshop around here with those busy girls barely stopping to eat. The General felt it was his job to make sure those little elves had plenty to eat and, of course, plenty of cabernet. Saturday night it was

ribeyes and fries….yum. Last night’s supper consisted of exquisite smoked racks of lamb and portobello mushrooms. We invited one of the little lady’s new friends to join us and I am happy to report that there were no leftovers! In fact our guests claimed it was the best lamb they had ever consumed! Not too shabby for the General!

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All lamb is not created equal….because they are not fed the same. We have some friends here in Savannah who own and run a great restaurant called Soho South Cafe. They very graciously gave to us a rack of lamb from Lobel’s in New York. I got so busy with the holidays that I never cooked it. However, the General knew that one rack would not feed this hungry group, so I went to the local Sam’s Club and purchased two additional racks.

We had a taste testing to compare the Sam’s racks vs. Lobel’s. Everyone agreed that the Lobel’s lamb was far superior to the Sam’s lamb, although both were good. It’s like a lot of things. You start buying a $10 bottle of wine, then, without realizing it, you are expanding to $15-$18 bottles..etc, etc. Now I am stuck with wanting the really good lamb from Lobel’s.

Here is the recipe I used for the lamb. I adapted this recipe from “
Fresh Austrailian Lamb Premium Recipes” and I highly recommend that you go to their website for further cooking instructions and recipes.

2-3 medium lamb racks

For the marinade:

1 cup olive oil

4 T garlic salt

1 T thyme (dried & crushed)

1 T rosemary (dried & crushed)

1 T black pepper (crushed)

Mix all ingredients and thoroughly combine. Pour into a one gallon zip lock bag and place the racks in the bag. Zip and refrigerate for at least 8 hours. Preferable overnight. Turn the bag once or twice during the marinating time. Make sure the bag is thoroughly zipped and compress the air out of the bag.

Orange marmalade glaze:

1 C orange juice

4 T lemon juice

1 C orange marmalade

Big pinch of salt

Big pinch of white pepper

4 T butter

1/2 C olive oil

Blend all ingredients except butter together in a saucepan and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the butter and keep warm at low heat until ready to serve.

Prepare your grill for indirect cooking. Place the racks opposite the fire. Close the cover and let it smoke for 25-30 minutes. Check your temperature. Your desired range for medium in the center of each rack is 140*. Be careful to keep your probe from touching a bone.

There is a variation of this recipe that calls for you to begin the process by searing your racks in a skillet and then placing them on your grill. The General just likes to do the whole process on his grill. (One less pan for the missus to clean up!)

At the cost of being repetitive, I have had much better luck with manufacturer’s recipes than I have with general magazine recipes. I believe the reason for this is that the manufacturer’s whole incentive is to get you to use its product often…thus selling more product. I am not so sure recipes in certain magazines (and even some cookbooks) are thoroughly tested as those from manufacturers.

Feb 16 2006

Bonnie and Clyde

Now let’s talk about our Valentine’s meal at the best restaurant in town! I ordered two 3 1/2 pound lobsters from Inland Seafood out of Atlanta for our dinner.

Now I know what you are thinking….”How can they each eat 3 1/2 pounds of lobster?” The answer is…You don’t! That is because you only get about a 30% yield of meat…the rest is body and shell. So when you are buying lobsters, if you are buying a pound lobster, you will only be getting one third of a pound of meat!


So…now you’re wondering how did I barbecue the lobsters??? I didn’t. The little woman grew up on Cape Cod and she is a purist. She always requested boiled lobster for her birthday dinner…and The General wanted to get some needed well-deserved brownie points.

Wanting to be totally gluttonous and fill our faces with as much lobster as we could consume, I skimped on the sides and just prepared some garlic bread.

We barely had enough left over for a real Maine lobster roll for lunch the next day!

The lobsters did the trick! Since she’s happy, I’m happy! The only ones who weren’t happy were “Bonnie and Clyde.” I think it is sadistic that she names them before dunking them in the boiling water…but I refused to allow her to have lobster races on the floor. I asked her why she is so cruel to the lobsters, and she replied, “Why, honey, they are used to it!”

Feb 16 2006

The General's Home Fries

I got a call a couple of nights ago (Valentine evening) from our son, Ben. He wanted to know at what temperature to cook French fries. This was a monumental moment for me for two reasons.

1: He is learning to use temperature.

2: He is learning that the best restaurant in any town is the home kitchen. (He had his sweetheart over for a home cooked dinner. Quite an achievement for him!)

The answer to his question is 375*. But I also reminded him that he needed to be careful, because the smoke and flash point for cooking oil is around 412*. This again states why temperature is so important.

We call our fries “Home Fries.” Slice potatoes lengthwise and fairly thin. (The thinner they are, the crispier they will be.) After you cut the potatoes, place them in a bowl/pan of water to keep them from turning brown. Caution: Hot oil and water don’t mix. When ready to fry potatoes, be sure to strain them and then pat dry with a paper towel.

Using my favorite black iron skillet, I pour in about an inch of oil and heat it to 375*. (My oil of choice is peanut oil.) Don’t overcrowd your skillet with too many potatoes, as they need room to fry. Gently place the pat dried potatoes in the oil.

As soon as you put your potatoes in the oil, the temperature of the oil will drop. The key here is to let them cook until you get your temperature up to 375*. Now is tasting time for desired ‘doneness’ and crispness.

I generally let the potatoes continue to cook at 375* for at least two minutes if not longer.


Now line a platter with double thick paper towels and place the fries on them. You can use straight salt, but I like seasoned salt, and season to taste.


If you are doing multiple batches as I do, be careful of this step. You need to watch your oil after removing the fries from the skillet. If you keep the skillet on the burner, the temperature will rise rapidly with nothing in the pan. Either remove the pan from the heat, or quickly continue to cook the fries.

Somehow I always have to cook more of these than I think I need, because the first batch or two usually get eaten before making it to the table.

Now you might ask, “What do French fries have to do with barbecue?”

1. Barbecue is the TRUE American food. I don’t know where French fries were really born, but try running a BBQ restaurant without having fries on your menu and you may not be in business very long!

2. It is yet another opportunity to preach the gospel of temperature and temperature control.

Feb 14 2006

National BBQ Association

Next week, starting Wednesday, February 22 and running until Saturday, February 25, the National BBQ Association (NBBQA) will be holding its yearly convention in Knoxville, TN. The General is on the Board of Directors as the ‘Catering Chair.’ Check out their website to see what is going on! Maybe you would like to join us there?

Feb 14 2006

Good Source for Wood

Last year at the Hearth and Patio Show in Atlanta we met the good folks from MaineCookingWoods.com and they gave us some samples. I just finished my last batch and have reordered from their really easy website.


I consider this company to be a good source for your wood and today I ordered more sugar maple chunks and black cherry chunks. I like the chunks better than the chips, but I consider this just a personal preference.

When I am firing up my Weber, I use two or three pieces. For best results, soak the chunks overnight in water and just add them onto the coals when the coals turn ashy grey. Experiment with the different types of wood and discover how the subtle smoke flavor can accent your food.

WARNING: Remember smoke should be an accent flavor and not a predominant one. Too little is better than too much!