Barbecue Tips

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Diane Guthrie
Julie and Brendan Burek, Canton, Massachusetts, are new to the world of competitive barbecuing.
Barbecue Ribs Put to the Test

? Marinating tenderizes and adds flavor to meat. When marinating, turn meat occasionally to distribute the marinade. Use a non-corrosive container such as glass, porcelain, glazed earthenware or a sealable plastic bag.

? Grills are easier to clean when warm. Use a wire brush or wadded newspaper. Remove ashes after the grill has cooled. This will prevent corrosion in the bottom of the grill.

? Buy short, thick or whole briskets with a heavy layer of fat: The bigger the brisket, the better for smoking.

? Cooking may be done with direct or indirect heat. Direct heat is obtained by distributing the coals evenly over the bottom of the grill. Indirect heat is obtained by moving the coals to the side and placing a foil drip pan under the meat in the middle area between the coals. Indirect heat cooks slower and is best for thick or large pieces of meat.

? Turn food with tongs or spatula to prevent juices from escaping.

? Soak wood chips or chunks in water for at least 30 minutes before using. Use dry oak to keep fire at correct temperature. Use hickory, apple or peach for a sweet, mellow taste.

? Meat should be allowed to rest for at least 15 to 20 minutes before carving.

? Sauces may be made and stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to one week or frozen for up to three months.

? When using barbecue sauce that does not contain sugar, apply the sauce every 45 to 60 minutes. This prevents the meat from drying out during grilling or smoking. Barbecue sauce that contains sugar should be applied only during the last stages of grilling or smoking.

? Do not use cedar, fir, pine, spruce or eucalyptus wood; their smoke gives meat a bitter flavor.

— Tips from The Kansas City Barbeque Society Cookbook:Barbeque …It’s not just for breakfast anymore.