The Meatwave: Barbecue & Grilling Recipes, Reviews, Tips, and Tricks

Barbecue

Thu Aug 8, 2019

Homemade Peppered Bacon

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Pepper Bacon

A while back, a friend of mine gifted me the bacon of the month club, and my initial reaction was more tepid than you might expect for someone who runs a site called "The Meatwave." For one, I'm not a huge fan of those mail order clubs, and also I've kind of shied away from becoming another voice in a bacon-everything chorus that needs no additional proselytizer. As each month passed though, I found myself anticipating the next bacon delivery more and more. All the bacons were so unique and delicious, it was may more of a thrill getting a new package of cured pork belly constantly than I had initially expected. To this day, one particular bacon that stood out for me was a peppered variation, which added a sharp bite to the already smoky and salty profile to turned things up to eleven. So when I finally decided to make my very first homemade bacon a couple months ago, a peppered bacon was my go-to.

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Thu Jul 25, 2019

Pastrami Pork Belly

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Pastrami Pork Belly

I've been at this grilling and smoking game for over 15 years now, so it may come as a shock that one thing I've never tried cooking at home before is bacon. I think a partial cause of this is that, when I began writing this blog, bacon content was way over saturated at the time and I didn't feel like jumping on that bandwagon. That bacon-mania era has since faded, but I never took up bacon production, even as I was getting more into cured meets and I got a meat slicer. So I had the knowledge and the equipment to set me up for bacon success, but then when I finally decided to make bacon a couple months ago, I went with a pastrami influenced version, and while cooking it, decided to keep true to my pastrami procedure, which didn't output something I can call bacon really, but pastrami pork belly.

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Thu Jun 27, 2019

Smoked Carnitas Tacos

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Smoked Carnitas Tacos

When I need to feed a lot of people, I almost always turn to pork shoulder. This cut is economical, high yield, and cooks reliably, that makes it a no brainer for me to use at any larger scale cookout. The only problem with this is, over the years, I've fallen into a predictable pattern of serving it again and again. Now that's not necessarily a bad thing, but for someone who thrives on developing new recipes, it can feel limiting. So at my annual barbecue blowout, Carne-val, I decided to try to do something slightly different this year—I still picked up a couple giant pork butts, but instead of giving them the tried and true barbecue seasoning, I made up something with influences taken from Mexican carnitas. The results were, at the same time, familiarly comfortable and excitingly different.

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Thu Jun 13, 2019

Smoked Barbecue Jackfruit

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Barbecue Jackfruit

I'm now enjoying my fifth summer here in Durham, which also marks the amount of time I've been more consciously cooking vegetarian recipes at The Meatwave. That fateful move had a rather unexpected outcome of my meatless constituency rising dramatically, and I've become a lot more adept at vegetarian grilling since then. I've realized recently that in doing that, I've fallen into a predicable pattern of picking up some extra-firm tofu and just marinading it in whatever sauce I already have going for other meat dishes. This has undoubtedly resulted in some rather tasty concoctions, and also allows my vegetarian guests have an experience similar to the meat-eaters, but it's also kind of left me in a rut where I'm not considering all the possibilities out there to make things more unique and even more delicious. So when I was planning my large Carne-val celebration this year, where pulled pork is often on the menu, I didn't go straight for the tofu (which I've done before) and instead looked to smoked and pulled jackfruit to deliver up a great barbecue experience that every Meatwaver could enjoy.

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Thu May 16, 2019

Sweet Tamarind Glazed Baby Back Ribs

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Sweet Tamarind Ribs

After adverse weather dampened my grilling and barbecue efforts for a bit over the winter, I found it necessary to reach into my archives and resurrect old recipes. One of those was for some cherry smoked and sauced baby back ribs, and when writing up that post, I realized it had been a very long time since I cooked up baby backs instead of my go-to spares. That left me with a desire to make a few racks of these leaner ribs, and my recent Tiki-themed Meatwave provided a great backdrop to do so, where I was able to devise an appropriately sweet and sticky sweet tamarind glaze to make these ribs meld in seamlessly into the overall menu.

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