Part IV: Grilling verses barbecuing

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, May 6, 2015

When cooking/smoking pork butt and brisket, I trim very little of the fat. When placing the meat into the smoker, I put the fat side up and do not turn the meat over at any time. After 5 or 6 hours, I rotate it 180 degrees in order for both sides to get heat and smoke coming from the fire box. Remember, do not “cut” the fat out—“cook” it out. The fat will melt and go down through the meat making it juicier and more flavorful.

To apply dry rubs or inject marinades, I suggest placing the meat into a disposable foil pan that is about three or four inches deep.

You can recover spilled rub or marinade and clean up is faster and easier.

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Another helpful hint is using thick wall styrofoam ice chests to help you while cooking. These are the types of styrofoam chests used when shipping frozen meats or seafood. If you are grilling two or more batches of chicken, when the juices first start to run clear, you can place the chicken into such an ice chest (see foil lining info later) with a little good quality BBQ sauce poured on it. The chicken will continue to cook and the sauce will help produce steam. The chicken will be thoroughly cooked as well as tender and juicy.

Always use heavy-duty foil when grilling or barbecuing. Try to find foil that is 18 inches wide. Line the styrofoam ice chest by using a piece of foil long enough to go down the side, across the bottom and up the other side. Also, down one end and across the bottom and up the other end. The foil should extend above the top of the ice chest and be long enough to fold over on top of the meats where you have four layers of foil on top. Placing a separate piece of foil on top to cover the meat is not as effective,

You will need a piece of 2 X 4 or 2 X 6 (or some similar material) to lay across the top of the ice chest so the steam will not push the top open and allow the steam to escape. Do not place one heavy item in the center of the lid as that can cause the edges of the top pull away from the rim of the ice chest.

You can also use the styrofoam chest for baked potatoes too. If you are baking a number of potatoes as well as other items in your oven, you can put the potatoes in the oven at 475 – 500 degrees. When they first feel they are getting soft, you can put them in the foam chest and secure the lid so the heat will stay in. They will continue to cook thoroughly and you can lower the oven temperature to bake bread or whatever else. By baking the potatoes at a higher temp and for a shorter time, they will be creamier and more tasty. Always use heavy-duty foil and wrap the potato while it is dripping wet.

Slow and low barbecue cooking can be fun and you can impress dinner guests with some great meals. If you develop your technique before you try a lot of experimenting, I think you will be happier with your results.

As promised, here are the rub recipes: I suggest that you mix these in a glass bowl or stainless steel bowl. All of the rubs can be stored in a sealed glass jar.


All Purpose Dry Rub

(use on pork butt or chicken quarters)

¼ cup dark brown sugar

½ cup white granulated sugar

1/3 cup garlic powder

1/3 cup onion powder

1 tsp black pepper

¼ cup paprika

1 tbs chili powder

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp ground cumin

2 tbs sweet basil


Brisket Rub

¼ cup paprika

1 tbs white granulated sugar

2 tbs brown sugar

3 tbs ground cumin

2 tbs chili powder

2 tbs black pepper

½ tbs cayenne pepper

1 tbs onion powder

1 tbs garlic powder

1 tbs sweet basil


Pork Rub

1 ¼ lb dark brown sugar

1 tbs chili powder

1 tbs garlic salt/powder

2 ¼ tsp cumin

2 ¼ tsp white pepper

2 ¼ tsp onion powder

¼ cup paprika

2 tbs black pepper