Sunday, February 28, 2010


I believe it was Mama Asid from Mama Asid's Entrepod Asked about ceramic cookers. I do not have any personal experience with them. I do know that a lot of the competition cooks use them for cooking their chicken.

In the past I have used 3 Weber Smokey Mountain (WSM) cookers in competition. They are "bullet" smokers like the ceramic cookers like the Big Green Egg or Komodo. Unlike the ceramic cookers the WSM has to be insulated from the wind. A barbecue friend of mine Ray Lampe aka Dr BBQ uses the BGE as his main competition cooker.

Currently I am using the Fast Eddy Cooker (FEC100) made by CookShack. Its not that I didn't like the WSMs because I do. However, on the competition circuit, after two or three days, picking the WSMs up and putting them in the trailer along with tables, chairs, canopies, etc got to be a chore. The FEC stays in the trailer. BTW the FEC100 is a pellet cooker. It uses food grade cooking pellets in place of charcoal to generate cooking heat.

I have not been paid for any of the endorsements of the above cookers or web sites. The opinion are my own.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

CancerSucksChicago BBQ Team

The Dudette (Pat) and I just spent an enjoyable weekend at a barbecue cooking class taught by Scottie Johnson and Mike Wozniak. Scottie is the head cook of the BBQ Team. Mike Wozniak is the head cook of the Quau (pronounced Q-Wow) BBQ Team.

Scottie started the class by giving us his background in competition barbecue. Then he went into the sad reason on how he named his BBQ team. His wife Corliss died from cancer 7 years ago this month, leaving him with 2 young daughters. On the eve of his winning the Jack Daniels World Invitational BBQ contest his Father died from cancer. Through out the years, Scottie has dedicated his free time to raising awareness and money for cancer research.

Mike is a perennial top 10 cook in the Kansas City Barbecue Society team standings. A few years ago Mike tied for team of the year with Mike Davis of Lotta Bull BBQ Team. Unfortunately KCBS says there can be only one number 1. So Quau lost to Lotta Bull.

The object of this class was to raise money for cancer research, share information to help everyone cook better, network and have fun. I believe the class achieved all its objectives and then some.

Friday evening started with us being served dinner by Uncle Bubs Barbecue in Westmont. The food was great! As we ate Scottie showed us how to trim briskets and pork butts. I did learn a different way to trim pork. Then Mike and Scottie talked to us about chicken and its preparation. Scottie showed us his trimming of pork ribs. The class ended Friday evening about 10pm with Scottie putting the briskets and pork butts in his FEC100 cooker.

The morning began at about 6:30am with it snowing. Scottie showed us how he wraps his briskets and butts. Then Mike took over the class and show us his custom "Quau" cooker. It is one slick cooker. Then he worked on chicken and Cornish hens.

Mike and Scottie tried to do the class in "contest" time. They gave everyone in attendance the feel and flair of contest timing. Not everyone attending the class were contest cooks. There were some amateur or backyard cooks.

Knowledge, fun and food was shared by all. By the way, this class raised over $13,000 for cancer research.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Winter Burn 2010 Results

Well gang, the old Dude didn't fare to well at the Winter Burn. The best I did was 7th place in pork. There were 17 teams out in the bowling alley parking lot. There were 18 paid teams but one team had to back out at the last minute. BTW, this was the 5th year for the Winter Burn.


Over all
1> Porkrastinators
2> Brew B Que
3> Mike Rib BBQ

1> Porkrastinators
2> Butt Smokers
3> Smoke Rings

1> Porkrastinators
2> Brew B Que
3> KRE Smokers

1> Mike Rib BBQ
2> Won't Get Smoke Again
3> KRE Smokers

1> Porkrastinators
2> Brew B Que
3> Ma & Pa Kettle

Now we have to look at our scores and see what needs to be changed. We experimented with different recipes and sauces this time out. Back yard contests like this is the perfect time to try out new recipes and sauces.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Winter Burn 2010

You've probably have watched the countdown clock above and wondered, "What the heck is a Winter Burn 2010?" Well... Winter burn is a one day barbecue contest between old and new friends in a bowling alley parking lot. More of a bragging rights thing.

For the last several years backyard and professional barbecue cooks get together to cure their cabin fever and to raise money for N.O.A.H.

This year we will be 12 to 17 teams cooking sausage, chicken, pork ribs and pork loin/tenderloin. There will also be a peoples choice chili contest. Whew! That's a lot going on in one day.

The teams will be arriving about 6am and the first turn in will be at 1:30pm and every half hour thereafter. If you want to talk barbecue, come early. If you want to taste some bodacious, and some not so bodacious, barbecue come closer to 1:30pm.

February 14th (Yes, Valentine's Day)

River Rand Bowl
194 S River Road
Des Plaines IL 60016

Phone: 847/299-1001

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Official totals are in!

As the heading says the Official 2009 Totals by the Kansas City Barbecue Society are in. They keep track of over 4,600 member teams in KCBS sanctioned contest.

Over all we are number 288! I think that is pretty darn good considering we did only 7 contests in 2009. Some teams have cooked in more than 30 contest and your standings are based on your 10 bests contest. So all things considered we didn't do to bad.

Individual categories..

Brisket... 170
Ribs... 267
Chicken... 282
Pork Shoulder... 380

To your right you'll see the Pickled Pig Power Rankings. The Pickled Pig keeps track of all teams participating in contests. KCBS keeps track of member teams only.