Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A Mini-Lesson on Barbecue

Hurricane Irene just sort of brushed by us, so all we got were some mild tropical storm conditions.  It wasn't safe to drive, but we didn't lose power or have any trees blow over.  There were some flash flood warnings but nothing like the flooding in the northeast.  We stayed with my grandmother, who has a nice, sturdy brick house.  It's also substantially nicer than our house.

We played bridge (well...sort of) and ate shrimp creole.  Definitely one of the best storm experiences I've had.  The dogs were quite excited to be somewhere new, at least at first.  They're getting on in years, so they don't make as many trips anymore.  It'd been a while since they'd been to the house.  When we let them out in the backyard Daisy didn't quite pay attention to what she was doing and fell in the pool.  She was not happy about that.  She didn't settle down until we were almost ready for bed.

We have a lot of frogs around here, and I think they wanted some shelter from the storm.  This little guy was hanging on with all his might!  He was only about an inch long.

Puddin doesn't have any trouble getting comfortable.  Give him a couch and a leg to lie against and he's a happy pup.
Sybil claims she doesn't like dogs, but she didn't exactly move him over.

The next day we had barbecue for dinner.  Barbecue can soothe the soul.  It's absolute comfort food for me.

This the barbecue sauce my grand-daddy made.  It's a vinegar based sauce with lots of pepper.  Barbecue is serious business in South Carolina.  Mostly because it was invented here waaay back when the Spanish came to colonize this part of the world.  The vinegar based sauce is the original condiment used with barbecue.  I like mustard and ketchup based sauces, which are readily available depending on where you are in South Carolina.  But I love vinegar-pepper sauce.  I get a facial tic when someone says they're going to barbecue something because to me barbecue is a noun, not a verb.  You can grill meat to your heart's content, but you do not barbecue it.  I also don't consider it real barbecue if it's not pulled pork.  I'll eat it because brisket and ribs are tasty, but they are not barbecue.  So now you know where I stand.

Yummm.  A plate.  'Cue, baked beans, cole slaw, and a slice of white bread.  This is not the time for wheat bread, people.  Save it for your turkey sandwiches.  Use soft, smushy white bread.

I like to take the bread and make a little sammich with some barbecue and cole slaw on top.  The slaw cuts some of the heat from the vinegar-pepper sauce, and the bread acts as a vessel.  The easier to stuff my face with, my dear!

One day I'll show you how to slow cook pork shoulder the easy way.  Whole hog is great, but I don't own a smoker.  And I'm pretty sure I can't lift a whole pig by myself.  Details.  For now, the restaurant stuff will happily do.

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