I have been trying to control my urges to buy new cookery books for a while now, because I don’t have any shelf space left for new ones, but one that I simply couldn’t resist is the new Pitt Cue Co. “The Cookbook” this was definitely right up my street, there’s been a real buzz about the Pitt Cue Co. that’s even reached out as far as Devon. They started out in a catering trailer and have gone from strength to strength with a new restaurant in Soho.
They hold all the values for food that I hold dear, best quality meat utilizing the cheaper cuts there’s a recipe here for Buffalo Pigs’ Tails, some wonderful side dishes, such as the fennel cured pork scratchings above, cocktails and shooters, such as the infamous Pickleback, Bourbon and Pickle juice above which works so well . But mainly there are some great and inspiring BBQ ideas that step out of the boundaries of most peoples idea of what BBQ food is.
The photography is pretty awesome too. All in all inspiring stuff, if you haven’t got this book yet, then you should go and get it now.
In the little village I live in we have a bunch of real foodies, and are lucky to have Steve from Pitmans Farm where we can nip to for our fix of well aged beef. Over a few beers one evening we had come up with the idea of a beefy carnivore night to cook and taste different cuts of beef and discuss the results. So Steve and I put together a tasting menu of the following delights.
Slow and Smoky Brisket~Traditional Slow Roast Brisket~Pulled Beef~Dino Beef Ribs~Smoked Brisket Chilli~Tuscan Grilled Veal and Dexter T-Bones~Dirty Veal Fillet~DIrty Dexter Skirt.
We also had some nibbles of pulled veal, fennel and cajun pork scratchings.
The brisket was 60day aged and took 8 hours to cook, being dry aged for so long it took a lot less cooking than younger briskets and had a wonderful depth of flavour, I used Butt Rub dry rub and smoked low and slow at 110-120deg C for 6 hours in the Kamado Joe ceramic BBQ over pecan and apple smoke. I then wrapped in foil and poured in half a bottle of beer and a glug of bourbon, cooked at the same temp for another hour, and finally brushing with BBQ sauce, and cooking for another hour uncovered. I allowed to rest in foil for another hour. The result was smoky and had a really good aged beef nutty taste well balanced with the smoke.
All the food went down well and it was fun discussing the various cuts of beef, cooking methods and techniques.
One thing I’ve always wanted to try is Moonshine, and this Georgia Moon proudly claims to be less than 30 days old, otherwise known as White Dog or Liver Varnish, this is a clean tasting corn liquor, slightly reminiscent of tequila, and this version tastes of Lemonade. 35% alc corn whiskey with a natural lemon flavour and bottled by the Johnson Distilling Co. in Bardstown Kentucky, very simple but impressively presented bottle in a mason jar.
I made up a batch of sweet tea, added a shot of Moonshine, a load of ice and topped up the jar with sweet tea, very refreshing with a real kick.
Lovely wet garlic is a totally seasonal crop from early summer, it’s perfectly in season now. So what is it? It’s a bulb of young garlic that is sweeter and juicier than it’s older dried relation, with a lovely creamy texture and less bitter than older garlic.
You can cook it whole, slice it into recipes, and use all of the stem. It’s very versatile and bridges the gap between your stored garlic and the new seasons. Just make sure you don’t use it all so you have no garlic left to store.
It makes the most stunningly good garlic bread by the way.
Sweet tea is an American Institution, well I’ve given it a bit of a British twist here. Brew up 2 litres of earl grey tea with 2 earl grey teabags, add a slice of lemon, juice of half a lemon, and 4-6 tbsps vanilla sugar (to taste) and a sprig of mint, I used apple mint, allow to infuse and cool for a few hours.
Once cool, top up with plenty of ice and garnish with lime wedges, sprigs of mint, and I used some pretty marigold petals.
Serve in jam jars with extra ice, a really thirst quenching cooler for summer.
As an alternative to the Dirty style of cooking I’ve been using a lot recently, this style of cooking doesn’t really benefit most fish, but plank roasting, and in this case Birch Log Roasting, works extremely well, protecting the fish from the direct heat but roasting and smoking it to perfection.
I used a little sea salt and a pinch of BBQ seasoning, on the salmon fillets and placed them on a birch log that I’d rubbed with a little olive oil on the top to stop the fish sticking. I nestled the log in the coals on a medium hot BBQ, I used a Kamado Joe from Outdoor Gourmet which is ideal for this kind of cooking. With the lid closed the sweet birch smoke was able to penetrate the fish and cook it perfectly, it took about 10-12 minutes. The bottom of the log will char up and smoke, make sure you have some heavy duty oven gloves or tongs for removing the log.
I served the salmon with a flower salad, and some herby couscous.
I have certainly been giving you all some very meatilicious recipes recently, so wanted to balance things with an incredibly tasty vegetarian recipe, that you can certainly enjoy by itself or as a side dish, but why not just celebrate fresh vegetables as they are.
I’ve posted the full recipe over on my monthly food blog Smoky and the Wood Pit, on Food Mag, you can see the recipe here Dirty Veg Rice.