It's been a year in the making, but a lengthy project is finally complete! Mastering the Big Green Egg is a guide to all things kamado, The ceramic grills hot- to will guide you through all of the hows. whys and successes of kamado cooking!
Buy your copy HERE or at all major book retailers such as Amazom, Target, Barnes & Noble, Books a Million, etc.
IT'S FINALLY HERE!
Anova Culinary Pro / Confit Duck
I absolutely love confit duck. Confit is a cooking technique where proteins are cooked an at ultra low temperature, but submerged in it's own fat. I have been researching confit duck when the PRO came out and decided to simulate the confit cooking technique, but utilizing the precision of Souz Vide.
I found a frozen whole duck at my local grocery store. I let it thaw out in my refrigerator for about 3 days. I always place frozen items in a plastic Cambro container just in case it decides to leak. Once thawed, I broke the duck down into Airline Breasts, these are breasts with the drum attached, and leg quarters. I vacuum sealed the breasts and threw them into the deep freeze for later.
The leg quarters were heavily seasoned with salt with minced garlic and fresh thyme from the garden. The heavy salt will draw out all of the moisture and almost cure the duck in the vac bag.
These legs cooked at 155F for 36 hours. The fat rendered during cooking and created a thin layer of fat around the legs creating a faux confit environment. After the 36 hour cook, these sat in the fridge for 12 hours.
After 12 hours in the refrigerator, I carefully removed the legs from the vac bag. I scraped off all of the fat a jus from the legs. The legs were placed on the Alfa BBQ 500 rack and placed in the Alfa Ovens Allegro wood wired oven at 400F to warm up and crisp the skin.
The confit results were fantastic! the ultra crispy skin and tender flesh was amazing. I served these legs with roasted garlic mashed potatoes, fire roasted brussel sprouts and a pan sauce using the jus from the bag. What a great meal!!
The Work Sharp Culinary E5 Kitchen Knife Sharpener takes the guess work out of sharpening your kitchen knives. You don't need a wet stone or need to be an experienced bladesmith in order to get a sharp edge. The E5 is an automated sharpener with a series of sharpening cycless. Whether your blade is dull and needs to be reshaped or just needs a quick touch up, this sharpener is up to the task.
Once sharp, keep your blade in tip top condition with the included ceramic hone. A steel hone will maintain a blade, but will leave it with "drag." The ceramic hone will take the drag out of the blade and make your job easy.
The Work Sharp Culinary E5 Sharpener is driven my an electric motor with flexible abrasive belts wrapped around pulleys. The belts are easily replaceable.
The Work Sharp E5 Kitchen Knife Sharpener works for every knife and for every person and I am so glad to have it in my kitchen!
Is this still on?
Yes, I am still alive! HAHA! I have been taking a break from the website and social media to focus on family and things that are more important to me. Social media and blogs are extremely time consuming and I want to apologize for the lack of content lately. However, things are getting ready to gear up again. So stay tuned!
I have still kept busy. I've been to Florida 4 times this year for the Chain of Lakes Eggfest, the SW Florida Eggfest, the Nature Coast Eggfest and the Sunshine State Eggfest. I've been hosting grill parties, catering and private classes at the Thunderdome. There are a lot more dates coming up as well. I've also launched new shirts and hats in the webstore.
New recipes are in the works and will be uploaded soon. Thanks for following along.
The 12 Grilling Days of Christmas
Officially announcing the 12 Grilling Days of Christmas Giveaway! Normally, I do a list of my favorite things here on the blog, but this year I wanted to GIVE those favorite things to you!
If you have a grilling wish list like me, you're going to want to participate in the largest Christmas Giveaway on the planet! Starting December 2 on my @biggreencraig instagram page, we will be giving away TWO prize packs per day for 12 days! Merry Christmas!
HUGE shout out to my partners for making this giveaway of epic proportions possible!
Here is a list of giveaway items
The details will be on each instagram post. The posts will include the duration of the item giveaway, how to enter, how to get extra entries, drawing dates and announcement. Good luck to all and I wish all of you a Merry Christmas! Stay tuned on December 2!!
Live Fire Quest: Enter the OFYR
The OFYR Grill comes packaged very well. It it packed with extra heavy duty corrugated cardboard that is unpacked easily. Don't be stupid like me and unpack and move this by yourself. (I almost lost a couple fingers. HAHA) Do yourself a favor and get the help of a neighbor or friend to help you. This thing is HEAVY!!
With the OFYR bring round, it was only fit to put in in the center of the round Thunderdome!
The OFYR ships with a thick layer of packing grease to prevent any rust on the cooking surface. It is mandatory to follow their directions to preheat and remove that film before cooking on it.
That shine!! This is after two seasonings. This will only get better with age!
Stay tuned for some killer live fire cooks!
Merica Day Pig Roast!
Happy Independence Day!
Happy 4th of July!
July 4th is always a yuuuge holiday around my neighborhood. From the pool party to the near professional fireworks performance, everyone seems to fall into their niche. Mine, of course, is the bbq. This year was bigger and better as it always progresses. While discussing what we could possibly do for a menu, I randomly threw out a pig roast onto the discussion table. Well, my neighbors loved the idea so here it goes.
I figured that it was time to break in the new Caja China from Latin Touch Products. They graciously sent me one for testing and review. This is their 100lb box.
I injected the pig with a classic mojo style injection found on the la caja china's website. Here it is:
1 cup sour orange juice **
1 tablespoon oregano
1 tablespoon bay leaves
1 garlic bulb
1 teaspoon cumin
4 teaspoon salt
4 oz. of water
4 oz. Pineapple juice (optional) secret ingredient in our Mojo Criollo
** You can replace the sour orange juice with the following mix;
6 oz. orange juice
2 oz. lemon juice
After the injection, I gave it a healthy coating of salt, then dumped all of the strained ingredients from the injection and dumped it into the cavity. To the roaster!! We started this pig on it's back. That will all the skin to hold all of the juices inside the cavity, basically basting itself.
We placed the lid on top and added an 18lb bag of Fogo Charcoal. Lighter fluid is a no no in my book. However, the charcoal wasn't flavoring the pig so I opted to use it to start the fire.
Note: The is the one time that lighter fluid is ok.
Once the coals were lit, I used a shovel to rake them out. The bulk of the coals were situated over the hams and the shoulders. The directions from the Caja China instructed that we should add lump every 90 minutes. We stretched that out to 2 hours because we were using Fogo premium charcoal vs a Kingsford briquette.
We got hungry while we sat around, drank beer and waited for the pig to cook. Luckily, I had a Crowd Cow brisket flat that I had just ground into ground beef. We decided to use the already burning and grill the burgers over the open fire.
During the cook, the Thermoworks Chef Alram kept us up to speed on the temperatures.
After about 7 hours, this 100 pound piggy was done!
Final Thoughts: The end product could not have been any better. This 100 pound piggy took approximately 7 hours to cook. The cracklin' skin was shatter crispy and the pork was tender with a velvet texture. Overall, the ease of this Latin Touch Products Caja China was impressive. I see lots of whole pigs in my future!
World Food Championships bound!
Last November I attended the World Food Championships. Mainly because I was in town and had a day off before the Pensacola Eggfest. I went to meet up with my good friend Chris Grove, Nibble Me This who was judging a couple categories, and a bunch of other friends. It was an amazing experience. While walking the red carpet with Josh Cooper, a Master Chef contestant, we vowed to compete in the 2017 Championship Event.
I entered the WFC Taste of America 2017 recipe contest. There were 2 contests built into the contest. There was the People's Choice contest and the judged category. I came in 3rd Place in the People's Choice Contest and 1st in the Recipe Contest to earn myself a Golden Ticket into this year's World Food Championship!
Here's my entry:
Not Yo Momma's Benedict starts with a scratch made pimento cheddar biscuit, with confit cherry tomatoes, a hand batter deep fried chicken thigh, poached egg and topped with a classic Hollandaise sauce.
Congrats to my good friends Josh Tahan and Josh Cooper for also qualifying! Congrats to all of the winners!
See you in November!!
Inaugural Country Cooking Cruise
Just got home from the Inaugural Country Cooking Cruise. What a fantastic trip! 7 nights on the Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas. We stopped in San Juan Puerto Rico, Lebadee Haiti & the island of St Maarten where we fired up the grills! Sailing with Francine Bryson, Jackie Garvin and Chef & the Fatman was a load of fun! Enjoy the pictures.
Left to right: Jackie Garvin, Erik Holdo, Executive Chef Barry Reid, Kevin Jenkins, Francine Bryson & Craig Tabor
Chef & the Fatman recorded their radio show while on board the ship.
We were "forced" to sample all of these rhums in order to decide which one/s to use in our cooks. Tough job. LOL
Somebody had to win!
I mixed up a dry rub for the ribs, then glazed them with a spiced rhum bbq sauce. I marinated my chicken in a honey/lime/habanero/spiced rhum marinade before using the same dry rub on the grill. This is the only food pic I got because time was extremely short.
Executive Chef Barry invited us on a behind the scenes tour of the kitchen on the busiest night, lobster night. Literally, organized chaos. To put things in perspective, there is 2.5 acres of kitchen space on board with 250 cooks, 21 pastry chefs and 11 bakers. These cooks work 10 hours a day, 7 days a week for 8 months at a time. The kitchen was amazingly clean and very shocked to see us. Lol. Pretty stoked to see this operation.
Chef came to the table to inform us that they severed just shy of 7,000 lobsters tonight!!
Special thanks to Southern Sailings, Kamado Joe, Mannix Pools & Grill Center, Fogo Charcoal, Topper's Rhum and Royal Caribbean for helping us put on a great show and help us raise a ton of money for a local charity.
JALAPENO CHEDDAR SKILLET CORNBREAD
The weather has gotten cold here in Atlanta. Cold weather means it's time for some comfort food! We like to keep warm with a nice hot bowl of chili and a skillet cornbread. You can find my chili recipe HERE. Feel free to change up the protein.
Here's the recipe for the cornbread!
Set your grill up for indirect cooking and prehead to 425F.
Over low heat, preheat a 10" cast iron skillet. Drop in the butter to melt. Swirl the butter all over skillet. Make sure you get the sides of the skillet so that your cornbread doesn't stick.
Mix all dry ingredients with a whisk thoroughly. Pour the melted butter from the skillet into the dry ingredeients along with the rest of the wet ingredients (reserving the 1/4 C of shredded cheese) and combine well.
Pour the mixture into the warm skillet. Give the skillet a shake to ensure even thickness and to prevent any air pockets. Top with the 1/4 C of reserved cheese. Bake on the grill for approx 23-27 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool for 10 minutes before slicing.
THE BBQ CHRISTMAS WISHLIST
Every year, I put together a BBQ Christmas Wishlist. The BBQ Wishlist is a list of my favorite accessories, tools, cooking gadgets that I use on a routine basis. This is a great tool for those shopping for Christmas or those needing some ideas! I hope you enjoy!
So, here it is in random order...
Be the BOSS of your fire with the Flame Boss. My sleep is valuable to me. Let the Flame Boss do all of the work for you! It’s like BBQ insurance! The Flame Boss will monitor and maintain your fire, as well as monitor the temperature of your food. It’s that easy!
The BEST lump on the market! Fogo Premium Lump Charcoal is a family
business working hard to make the best quality product possible.
You won’t find 3 lbs of dust in this lump!
Bring the art of Brazilian BBQ to your backyard. Think outside the lid and spin it to win it! Fire + Food + Spin = a perfect combination! The Carson Rodizio has become a favorite in our household and there’s nothing better than some Brazilian picahna!
Everyone could use a vacation, so might as well vacation with foodies! Southern Sailings has out together a Culinary Cruise with a ton of celebrity chefs. I am honored to be one of them. We'll be grillin' on the ship! Come sail with us!
I use a ton of different temperature monitoring devices. However, the Thermoworks Thermapen MK4 is the ultimate decision maker. The new Mark 4 is waterproof and backlit for your convenience. Plus, it reads in any direction. It’s a MUST for any cook.
The Thermoworks Smoke is a brand new wireless monitoring device. With a 300ft radius, you’ll never be too far away to receive the signal. Great for those cooks using pellet cookers or pits without a pit controller.
The Pizza Porta turns any ceramic kamado into a wood fired pizza oven. The porta (door) allows you to reach 600F rapidly, allows you to maintain a steady temperature and allows a more efficient burn. At the same time, reducing flashbacks during conventional cooking.
Medium Rare Chef Apparel makes industry apparel made by industry people. Crafted and designed by actual chefs, cooks, servers, runners and bussers that know what is needed in the proper gear.
The Kick Ash Basket will revolutionize your grilling experience by providing a quicker light to your charcoal, superior airflow and makes clean up a breeze.
Shake That Ash & Light That Fire!
Meat Church BBQ is a Texas based BBQ Rub Company. They boast the greatest flavor and color in BBQ. They can be found heavily in the BBQ competition arena and in backyards across the world.
I.O.Shen are Japanese Master Grade Knives and is the choice of the professional chefs across the world. These knifes are designed to work, not to be pretty to look at and designed with a perfect balance and ground to hold an edge.
The Concave Cutting board has revolutionized the cutting board industry. Unlike traditional boards that are designed to channel the juice out and away from your food, the Concave pools the food’s natural juices to the center of the board which allows the food to baste itself in it’s own juice. SAVE THE JUICE!!!
Genty’s BBQhttp://www.gentrysbbq.com/shop is a startup BBQ company out of Orlando, FL. Their first offering to the market is Roscoe’s Mop Sauce, a vinegar based mop. Its flavor is spectacular!
Grill Grates get those gorgeous grill marks that everyone longs for. At the same time, Grill Grates shield those pesky flareups that char and burn your food. A must have!
Crisbee is a premium cast iron searoning product. It's available in a variety of scents and packaging.
May 21-28, 2017
October 22, 2016
November 13, 2016
I'll be catering the VIP dinner as well as co-judging the EGGfest next to my good friend Chris Groves (NibbleMeThis), Big Moe Cason and funny man Jon Reep!
We did it again! TWOPEAT!
We did it again! For the second year in a row, we came in 1st Place at the National Big Green Egg EGGtoberfest! Hundreds of man hours went into planning our cook. My team's hard work and execution paid off immensely.
I could not be more proud of them.
2016 EGGtoberfest 1st Place
Preheat your grill to approx 450F and set it up for direct grilling.
In a mixing bowl, combine the mayo, Cholula Chili Lime Hot Sauce, lime zest, lime juice, chipotle powder and season with salt & pepper to taste. Stir until all ingredients are combined. Set aside.
Peel the husks back from the ears of corn and remove all of the silks. I like to leave the husks on for presentation and the husk gives you something to hold on to while eating. However, you may choose to remove the husks completely. Grill the corn until charred slighting. Turn every 2-3 minutes,
Once the corn is grilled to your liking, remove the corn. Brush on the Cholula mayo mixture covering the corn completely. sprinkle on the cotija cheese and the cilantro.
Surf n Turf - Filet Oscar
The filet was prime grade from my local butcher. I was in there for something else and had zero intentions of buying steaks, but he showed me some gorgeously marbled thick cut filets and I couldn’t say no.
The filets were seasoned with salt & pepper only, seared in a Medium Egg on upside down Grill Grates at 550F for 2 minutes a side, then went into a 275F Mini Max to finish. They were cooked to an internal temp of 127F.
While the filets rested, we steamed a cluster of snow crab, grilled the asparagus and started the béarnaise sauce. The béarnaise started with sautéed shallot, dry chardonnay and minced tarragon. Egg yolks were beaten in a classic double broiler and melted unsalted butter and some of the reduced chardonnay was added and whipped until thickened.
This is one of our all-time favorites.
Big Green Egg