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Smoking Meat: The Essential Guide to Real Barbecue


Author: Jeff Phillips

Publisher: Whitecap Books Ltd


Publish Date: May 15, 2012

ISBN-10: 1770500383

Pages: 208

File Type: Epub

Language: English

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Book Preface

I WAS BORN in Concord, North Carolina, but was raised all across the United States due to my dad’s love for traveling, and I’ve always had a keen interest in food and cooking. Right out of high school and throughout college, it was not uncommon for me to treat my friends and family to food that I cooked or grilled on my little hibachi.

Just a few years after I was married, I was given a small Brinkmann smoker—the one that looks like R2D2—and I set out to learn how to use it. I was determined to make the most of that smoker no matter how many folks told me it was cheap and hard to use. This sparked in me a love for the taste of smoked meats and a passion for barbecue tools and techniques. In this book, I share the assorted and tasty smoking adventures that followed.

I read every barbecuing book in our local library and everything else I could find on the subject, and I found myself turning out some of the best-tasting meat I had ever made. I cooked for anyone who would let me, and I would find any excuse for a get-together so I could experiment with a new type of meat to share with unsuspecting test subjects. Before long, I was being asked to cook for anniversaries, parties, and church events, and I especially loved cooking for all of my relatives on holidays.

Several years and many trial runs later, my wife, Abi, along with other members of my family, encouraged me to put all of my knowledge onto a website so I could share it with others. The more I thought about it, the more the idea made sense. From very meager beginnings, my website,, has grown to more than 300 pages of information on the subject, and we have 130,000 newsletter subscribers. There are 32,000 forum members at , as well. Pretty good for something that started as a hobby.

At the beginning, I worked on the website during the evenings, and I was a manufacturing engineer at a local company during the day. But in April 2009, after being laid off from my day job due to downsizing, I decided to go into the smoking meat business full time instead of putting myself back in the job market. That was possibly one of the best decisions I have ever made.

Within the next few months I was asked to write this book and I was featured in the Tulsa World, our local newspaper. These events were instrumental in letting me know that smoking meat is what I was born to do. My passion became my dream job: getting paid to play with fire.

This book will equip you with the basic knowledge you need to produce succulent slow-smoked food over hot coals and wood, right in your own backyard. It is written for anyone who wants to learn more about smoking meat, regardless of whether you are a novice or a seasoned pitmaster. It will help you produce food that will make you a legend in your neighborhood and maybe even in your town.

Some of my methods may be out of the box, but others may not follow what purists have taught for years about smoking meat. I’m all about doing what works, even if it hasn’t always been done that way. These pages are meant to kindle a fire in both you and your smoker, and to help you become the best pitmaster you can be.

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