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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 03-07-2013, 01:48 PM   #1
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Default Is there such a thing as "the integrity of bbq"?

I know we've had discussion after discussion of what is "real" bbq and what is not.

But are there some things that no matter the generation, need to be passed on or "protected" regarding bbq'n? Saw a thread on here (not sure which board) about how a Texas tradition of places making their own sausage is disappearing. The thread also talked about how the media is defining "BBQ" to a mass of people and in many cases it is simply putting bbq sauce on something.

I've watched some shows on tv regarding bbq and my wife has to calm me down because what they are calling "BBQ" is throwing hot dogs on a propane grill and warming them up.

I know there will be differing opinions and that is a good thing. But what are your thoughts about keeping some form of "integrity" about bbq'n not letting it get too far from it's primitive beginnings?
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Unread 03-07-2013, 01:49 PM   #2
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There's that word again.

I think an awareness of past methods and principles is a good thing to make available to those who are interested. Once nobody is interested any more, well, not much one can do about that I guess.
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Duh.
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Unread 03-07-2013, 01:53 PM   #3
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The dictionary of American language is continually being revised to reflect the popular usage of words
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Unread 03-07-2013, 01:55 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigabyte View Post


There's that word again.

I think an awareness of past methods and principles is a good thing to make available to those who are interested. Once nobody is interested any more, well, not much one can do about that I guess.
This is what I actually mean. I'm not that great at putting into words what I mean. But you've said exactly what I mean.
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Unread 03-07-2013, 01:57 PM   #5
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It's an interesting thing, I think in the end, BBQ is really a personal thing. On the other hand, there are traditions and regional styles that should have people willing to preserve them. I know that out here, the latest trend seems to be to deny the existence of a California (or what I know as Oakland-style) BBQ and to try and mimic the cooking of other regions.

I do believe that media and generally, sloppy attitudes about individuality, have lead everyone to decide that they are the arbiters of everything. This had lead to a flattening of the BBQ landscape. I find this in all manner of cuisine though.

I tend to resist what some people call 'authenticity in food' especially when the first thing out of their mouth is 'my grandmother cooked...' or 'I lived in Memphis (or Texas, or North Carolina)...'. In my mind, if you want to learn the old ways, document the styles, recipes and techniques and really understand the old ways, that is great.

Carp, now i have forgotten where I was going...BBL
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Unread 03-07-2013, 02:00 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigabyte View Post


There's that word again.

I think an awareness of past methods and principles is a good thing to make available to those who are interested. Once nobody is interested any more, well, not much one can do about that I guess.
From a Bama Buzzard, located in Louisianna...

What did 'ya expect?

However, yeah, I agree Bama. Particularly, I dont care that some, watching TV shows, etc. have begun to call all types of **** BBQ with no understanding of what is, isn't, might, might not be BBQ...

I'm not trying to argue over symantics if this is and that ain't BBQ, but without some grounding and understanding at least fundamentally (historically) what IS BBQ (and to some degree the roots of BBQ), there's no debate to be had.

However, I dont know that my or our opinion will change much. Reporters will still show un-informed stuff and pass it off as the end-all be-all. People will still see sanctioned BBQ cookoffs and think "they do it, it's definitely Q" when all they're seeing are sanctioning bodies defining their game, and in many cases organizers adding additional games in the mix. They're not trying to define what IS nor ISN'T Q. But, that's not what average Joe come away with...

And, what actually (above) may seem contrary to Landarc, I offer that it embraces his point. BBQ is regional! What is, isn't, can and can't be, IS regional. Lets not lose this. In my particular region, we'd never consider tri-tip BBQ, but in his area it IS, and I hear it can be awesome. I for one would love a good Santa Maria grill, as I have plenty of oak and love oak-fired steaks. <--- dont happen to call it BBQ, but again I'm from a very under-educated region (self deprecating humor I find most funny).
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Unread 03-07-2013, 02:04 PM   #7
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I give kudos to folks like Boshizzle and Pitmaster T, who have done actual research and brought forth the documentation, at least recorded it, to help maintain these traditions and histories. I suspect, it sounds like there are others, such as R L Reeves Jr. doing the same. In the end, that is going to be a key aspect of maintaining our history and what we like to think of as BBQ.
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Unread 03-07-2013, 02:06 PM   #8
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If a time comes when I'm driving the back roads and don't get STOPPED because I got that WHIF and had to check it out...that'll be the end for me.
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Unread 03-07-2013, 02:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lake Dogs View Post
From a Bama Buzzard, located in Louisianna...

What did 'ya expect?

However, yeah, I agree Bama. Particularly, I dont care that some, watching TV shows, etc. have begun to call all types of **** BBQ with no understanding of what is, isn't, might, might not be BBQ...

I'm not trying to argue over symantics if this is and that ain't BBQ, but without some grounding and understanding at least fundamentally (historically) what IS BBQ (and to some degree the roots of BBQ), there's no debate to be had.

However, I dont know that my or our opinion will change much. Reporters will still show un-informed stuff and pass it off as the end-all be-all. People will still see sanctioned BBQ cookoffs and think "they do it, it's definitely Q" when all they're seeing are sanctioning bodies defining their game, and in many cases organizers adding additional games in the mix. They're not trying to define what IS nor ISN'T Q. But, that's not what average Joe come away with...
On some level I see boundaries being widened further and further to the point where someone can chit in a hormel chili can and call it bbq, and by god that's what it is!!!!
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Unread 03-07-2013, 02:08 PM   #10
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You want to safe guard it, gather your offspring through all the rubs and sauces in the trash, then with them in tow go build a fire season a hunk of critter with S&P and put it over a low fire to slowly cook.
"Buy a Kid a BBQ saminch he'll eat for a day teach a Kid to BBQ he'll feast for a life time." The point is "you can't get where you going if you don't know where ya been" technology makes folks stupid.
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Unread 03-07-2013, 02:16 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamabuzzard View Post
On some level I see boundaries being widened further and further to the point where someone can chit in a hormel chili can and call it bbq, and by god that's what it is!!!!

Funny you mention that as an example. I came to competition BBQ by way of competing in TONS of chili cookoffs myself. If I hadn't seen it first-hand, I would never have believe what people will pass across a table and call it chili. I dont mean to hijack this thread into a chili thread, but I'm trying to explain what to a small degree this is a relevant discussion to be had. I've seen stuff that 99% of us would clearly call spaghetti sauce come across a table presented as chili. I've seen some of the best steak I've ever tasted in my life be sliced up thin, rare to medium rare, dusted with a little seasoning and called chili. I've seen pasta, mushrooms, corn, chicpeas, other types of peas, all types of "secret" ingredients that would normally be found in Asian food, or Italian food, etc. come across and be presented as "Texas Red". I'm thinking to myself: REALLY?

So, that's kinda why I engage in some of these mindless debates...


I haven't seen Pitmaster T's historic posts, but I have seen Boshizzle's. They're FANTASTIC. 1700's, 1800's, lots of very early 1900's. Good things there. I thought it was very cool to see people of a lot of very different colors and backgrounds sitting around tables talking to one another over a cold brew and some good BBQ. BBQ seems to be a type of "glue" in the fabric that is our history.
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Unread 03-07-2013, 02:17 PM   #12
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Bludawg, you are spot on. My kids eat what I cook, but have no idea how I cook it. Don't get me wrong they like to cook. I wanted to have a friends over for a BBQ party this summer. But after reading this, I have a different idea. I'm going to gather together, for the weekend, my son, daughter, SIL and two grandchildren for a true BBQ weekend. I am going to let them prepare, tend the pit, and get it all ready. If nothing else they will see were good Q comes from and how it is done. And when I'm gone I can look down on them and watch them fight over the UDS.............
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Unread 03-07-2013, 02:18 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bludawg View Post
he point is "you can't get where you going if you don't know where ya been"
You know, as simple as this is, it probably hits it about as dead-on as I've seen it in a LONG time. KUDOS.
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Unread 03-07-2013, 02:27 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lake Dogs View Post
Funny you mention that as an example. I came to competition BBQ by way of competing in TONS of chili cookoffs myself. If I hadn't seen it first-hand, I would never have believe what people will pass across a table and call it chili. I dont mean to hijack this thread into a chili thread, but I'm trying to explain what to a small degree this is a relevant discussion to be had. I've seen stuff that 99% of us would clearly call spaghetti sauce come across a table presented as chili. I've seen some of the best steak I've ever tasted in my life be sliced up thin, rare to medium rare, dusted with a little seasoning and called chili. I've seen pasta, mushrooms, corn, chicpeas, other types of peas, all types of "secret" ingredients that would normally be found in Asian food, or Italian food, etc. come across and be presented as "Texas Red". I'm thinking to myself: REALLY?.
And that's my point. If there's no defining criteria of some sort I could actually put an apple in a sauce pan, heat it up and tell you it's bbq. When it is really just an apple in a sauce pan. It's been joked about on here a ton but I've watched someone make sloppy joe sandwiches on a stove and call it bbq.....and was serious.
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Unread 03-07-2013, 02:30 PM   #15
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One thing I wanna mention is something I haven't really seen addressed directly, which is, regional styles aside, it seems to me the integrity comes in when we look at how much thought and effort goes into preparing food. Not that cooking has to be a difficult task, but is the primary motivation serving the best possible food. Is it being prepared with pride or not?

We all strive for efficiency in varying degrees with our cooking process, but I'm guessing that most of us here draw a line where sacrificing quality comes into play. I'm thinking that where that line is drawn - quality vs. efficiency - is where a lot of us determine where the integrity is.
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