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Old 11-25-2020, 07:45 AM   #4
Ron_L
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Join Date: 12-09-04
Location: Chicago 'Burbs
Name/Nickname : Captain Ron
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What do I know now that I wish I knew before we started?

How addicting competitive cooking can be

OK... Seriously...

The first thing you need to consider is if you can put your personal preferences aside and cook for the judges. What I cook for BBQ or steak competitions it very different than what I cook for us at home. The judges have to make a scoring decision based on a quick look at your turn in and one or two bites, so the food that you turn in must be perfectly cooked and not be offensive in any way. That means not too sweet, not too salty, not too spicy, etc.

Second, Visit a competition, walk around and talk to the cooks (not when they are busy, of course). Most of us are glad to help. Ask questions about equipment, what their prep schedule is, etc. to make sure that you understand what goes into cooking a competition. If you can, find a team who is willing to let you ride shotgun with them. That will give you a better feel for what actually goes on. In a KCBS competition, the 3 1/2 hours from 11am until 1:30pm are non-stop and can be pure chaos

If you do decide to take the leap, find a class to take from a successful team. Classes are expensive, but it will increase your chances of doing better significantly.

Finally, I wish I knew how wonderful our BBQ Family is! We have made so many great friends through BBQ and steak competitions!
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