The Fourth of July weekend is nearly upon us. For many, it is the unofficial start of summer; and with Summer comes cookouts, my favorite consequence of any seasonal shift. In my eyes, the star of every cookout is barbecue. Will you be making food for your next gathering? Is it your first time and you need guidance? Do you want to know why some use a dry rub while others marinate? Are you a pitmaster but are interested in trying a new style?
So. Many. Styles. Memphis, Carolina (with differences between North and South), Kansas City, Texas (also remember there are regional differences within the state), Korean, Alabama and Kentucky, among others.
Here are a few of my favorite books on barbecue:
Mark Bittman writes for the adventurous non-professional. “How To Grill Everything” is a massive tome which casts a wide net to cover the most territory, as the title suggests. More than a book strictly on barbecue, Bittman will show the versatility of using the grill for any meal.
Raichlen is a master at all things cooking meat. From his television show to the numerous books he’s written, Raichlen has it covered. “The Brisket Chronicles” has everything.
Another Raichlen title I like, “How to Grill Vegetables,” helps the cook move past crudités or boiled as the only ways to present vegetables. Grilling vegetables brings a natural sweetness to your plate.
Barbecue is a process, and not always a quick one. “The Barbecue Lover’s Big Book of BBQ Sauces” will guide you through the prep work necessary before the act of actually cooking the meat. Sauces, rubs and marinades are all covered here.
“Barbecue Crossroads” is part travel guide, part history lesson, part collection of tried-and-true recipes. Let a James Beard Award-winner guide you through what makes barbecue so special to the South.
Interested in some new flavors? Try “Korean BBQ!” This introductory guide will help add some variety to your next cookout. Though the recipes can be a bit complicated, they are fully explained to allow the novice access to this increasingly popular flavor resource.
Are these not exactly what you’re looking for? Here is a large list of a small portion of titles in our collection.