· The Hot Line - Newsletter
Jul. 2010: Memphis Grilling

July 2010
Welcome
It's time to take care of business. This month's Hot Line is all (ok, 'mostly') about Memphis. No, not the ancient Egyptian city of Memphis - that's next month. This month we're talking about Memphis, Tennessee: home of the blues, birthplace of rock and roll and cradle of American barbecue.
Memphis is not Disneyland. It is not manicured, lacquered, pasteurized Americana. In fact, it's a bit scruffy. However, if you are at all interested in the roots of American music or great barbecued food, I would HIGHLY recommend you check it out. (If you're interested in both of those things, book your ticket today). Graceland, Sun Studios, The Rock and Soul Museum and the Gibson guitar factory are all right there surrounded by some serious rib joints. After you've gorged yourself on barbecued food and musical history, you might be ready for a break. As one of my friends said after a long day of music tours, "If I see one more guitar I think I'm going to puke." Then it's time to check out the National Civil Rights Museum. Well worth the visit, and a definite eye opener for a sheltered, Canadian prairie boy.
Every week in the summer our stores feature a "Deal of the Week". This ingeniously named event is intended to serve two functions: #1) highlight how creative we are when it comes to labeling our promotions and #2) show the world how much value our humble little enterprise offers you. Every week we have a ridiculously low price on a different barbecue essential. This week (June 29 to July 5) for instance, we are featuring our stainless steel grilling pot which, at our regular $14.99 is a great value. At $7.98 it's damn near criminal. Built for outdoor wear and tear, you can also use this little guy inside; I've been using one of these daily for the last few months and it works like a charm. For under $8, you're 'touched in the head' if you don't come in and grab one (or two). If you want to see what the deal of the week is every week, you can phone us, visit one of our stores or, if you're into this whole 'information supermarket' thing (is that the right term?), you can visit our facebook page which, like all other facebook pages, is an extremely efficient use of your time.
  One last reminder. You really, really, really should send in an entry into our seventh annual 'Worst Barbecue in Canada Contest'. We haven't been flooded by entries yet so your chances of winning are VERY GOOD. All entries need to be emailed to us by July 30th.

Barbecue Tipster
A reminder: it's Canada Day this week. How about, on this one day a year, we all try to eat and drink nothing but products grown and produced right here in Canada? Even if that means we do nothing more adventurous than eat Alberta beef and drink local beer, I think we can all make the effort. And, don't forget the Canadian made hardware: as we often say around here: if you want a barbecue that works in Canada, you should get a barbecue that's made in Canada.
 

Gotta Have It
Lot's of great barbecued food gets eaten in Memphis. However, the calling card of this barbecue city is the pork rib. Ribs are tasty. Ribs are good. And that's why some genius invented 'the rib rack'. This handy wire gizmo allows you to - get this: cook more ribs with the same space. Basically turning something great into something that is 100% super-awesomeness. Easy to use, inexpensive to buy - if you like ribs, you should have a few of these in your barbecue quiver.

Meet the Experts
Meet Claire and Julia. They both work in our store in Oakville. One might call them pals. One might call them "close". One might also call them "joined at the hip". Lucky for us, they're both incredibly helpful and passionate about barbecuing. In fact, some of their friends think that they're too interested in barbecuing. Huh? What kind of friends are those? Here, in their own words, is a bit more information about Claire and Julia: How do you two know each other? Fate. We grew up in the same town, ended up going to the same university, then lived on the same floor in residence and the rest is history. What kind of barbecues do you cook on? Claire cooks on a Summit 620 and Julia cooks on a Broil King Sovereign 20 but is dying for a Big Green Egg. If one of you is scheduled to work a shift in the store and the other person is not scheduled, how do you manage to get through the day? Facebook before work, call as soon as our shift is over and hang out in the evening. Not to mention text updates on our lunch break. What do you do when you're not working at Barbecues Galore? Barbecue and most recently we have taken up hot yoga together because we enjoy that it has a similar searing temperature to a Napoleon Infrared burner. What is your favourite food to cook on the barbecue? Claire loves to bake cupcakes of all flavours and Julia loves experimenting smoking ribs. Have you ever been to Memphis? If so, what was your favourite part? If not, why? Claire drove through it on her way to Louisiana once and enjoyed the southern hospitality so much that she didn't even wake up from her nap. Both Claire and Julia would like to visit because Claire loves country music and both love southern home cooking. What are your favourite Elvis songs?
  1. All Shook Up: (when we use Green Egg Pecan rub we play this song when shaking the chicken in the bag with the spice)
  2. Burning Love: (how we feel about the Ass Kicking Chicken Wing Sauce)
  3. Susie Q: (makes us think of the Weber Q's)
  4. Girls! Girls! Girls!: (and grills! grills! grills!)
 

Recipe of the Month If we could just get off-a that beat little girl Maybe we could find the groove At least we can get a decent meal Down at the Rendezvous ~ Memphis in the Meantime, John Hiatt This recipe is patterned after the rib-recipe at the world-famous Rendezvous restaurant in Memphis, Tennessee. If you're anywhere near Memphis, you have to make it to the Rendezvous. If you can't make it to Memphis, then this recipe is the next best thing. The recipe produces a 'dry' style rib. It's not meant to be covered in sticky, sugary sauce, and the meat is not meant to be falling off the bone. This is, in my humble-yet-100%-accurate opinion, a more flavourful way to cook ribs. They're still plenty moist but the moisture is provided by the ribs, not a sauce added afterwards. These ribs aren't 'smoked', they're grilled - indirectly. Your barbecue needs to be on low heat but you don't need to dedicate the better part of the day to cook them. I've heard people say that the recipe below is not the 'true' recipe that the Rendezvous uses. That might be true. However, it makes a damn tasty rib. The recipe is fairly salty and probably makes enough rub to work for 8-10 racks of ribs. Once made, the rub should last for at least three weeks in a cool, dry place. Ingredients
  • 2 cups white vinegar
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 racks of pork ribs
  • 1/3 cup salt
  • 3/4 cup pepper
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp oregano
  • 1 Tbsp paprika
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder (we used chipotle powder)
Lay out your ingredients.
Remove the back membrane from the ribs.
If using charcoal, prep your charcoal for indirect heat and install a pan full of water underneath your cooking area so the ribs stay moist. If you're using a gas barbecue, use indirect heat (and a water pan still isn't a bad idea). Cooking temperature should be around 325 Fahrenheit.
Prep your spice mixture. Add 1/3 of a cup of the spice mixture to the water/vinegar mixture. That is your basting liquid. The rest of the rub will be used as a finishing touch once the ribs are fully cooked.
Load up your rib rack and place on your grill using indirect heat. If you don't have a rib rack, I think that, at this point, you need to be asking yourself some very pointed questions about your priorities in life.
After fifteen minutes, baste your ribs with the spice liquid. Continue to baste liberally every fifteen minutes. Rotate your ribs after 45 minutes (flip the rib rack and switch the racks from the hotter, 'outside' positions to the 'inside'.)
Cook covered for approximately 1 1/2 hours. When the bone tips are exposed at either side of the ribs - they're done.
Sprinkle some of the remaining seasoning mixture on the ribs as they come off the grill. Voila - best ribs ever.
Serve with...actually, it doesn't matter what you serve the ribs with. If ribs were a colour, they'd be 'black' - they go with everything.

Ask Dr. McGrillemup Question: Dear Dr. M, What is this 'Memphis in May' competition I keep hearing about? Signed, Qwee Hurious Answer: Dear Qwee, Memphis in May is a thirty year old, municipal, cultural festival put on by the city of Memphis. Since 1978 a large component of the festival has been a barbecue cooking competition. It has grown to be the grand-daddy of all barbecue competitions, attracting hundreds of teams that compete for over $100,000 in prize money. Only wood and charcoal grills are allowed in the competition (no gas) and the main focus of the competition is pork. The three primary competition categories are pork rib, pork shoulder and whole hog. There are other competition categories as well (wings, beans, coleslaw etc.) but the raison d'etre is the mighty pig. Yours in pork, Doctor McGrillemup

The World of Barbecue
Not far from Memphis, across the state line in Helena, Arkansas there used to be a place called 'Armstrong's Pit Barbecue'. You want the real stuff? Then this is the sort of place you come to get it.
Lots of new barbecue restaurants use electric smokers with calibrated temperature control and carefully allotted inputs of electronically generated smoke. What do you think makes better tasting barbecue? That, or this nasty looking, wood-fired UFO in the picture?
Menu is not long on ingredients or pretense. When I was there I did not notice any 'heart-smart' options.
Hangovers not included.
Elvis's kitchen. Honestly, we sell barbecues that are bigger than this. I suppose you don't need a lot of room to make fried peanut butter and banana sandwiches but still, I expected more.
Send us a picture and/or story of you (or a friend of yours, or an enemy of yours) grilling and we'll send you a $25 gift certificate usable throughout our massive chain of four stores.

This Month's Winners
Every single month, we randomly draw four winning names (one per store) from our newsletter mailing list. We only post the winning names below so you've got to keep your eyes peeled each month. If you win, you can claim your prize by stopping by the Barbecues Galore in your area with your photo identification. Congratulations to this month's winners of a Memphis style prize pack that includes a handy rib rack, smoking cookbook, sauces & seasonings: Irene Pollock (Calgary South) Linda Osiowy (Calgary North) Don Scott (Burlington) Scott & Anita Timpson (Oakville)  

Next Month's Issue Next month we're bringing two of the world's best things into one newsletter. That's right whisky and barbecue - together at last! If you've got any good grilling recipes that involve whisky, please send them in. See you next month.

Contact Us We want to hear from you! If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at: query@barbecuesgalore.ca Remember, an archive of our past newsletters can be found at www.barbecuesgalore.ca

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