Puerto Rican Pork Shoulder
Canadian Trout Grilled on a Log
Daniel Kiplagat--Nairobi, Kenya
Haji Samuri, owner of Sate Kajang Restaurant--Malaysia
Uzbek grill master Stalic Khankishiev
Welcome to Planet Barbecue, where grilling over a live fire is practiced 24-7 on all seven continents. (Even in Antarctica, where on September 13, 2008, a band of Russian scientists braved double-digit sub-zero weather to grill Russia’s beloved shashlik, pork shish kebab.)
For some people (especially if they live in the southern half of the United States), barbecue means the low (typically 250°F), slow
(a half day or so) smoke roasting of Texas brisket or North Carolina pork shoulder. For others--the vast majority of citizens of Planet Barbecue--the process involves direct grilling steaks, chops, kebabs, burgers, breads, vegetables, and fruits quickly over a hot fire. Almost everywhere, live-fire cooking results in a communal meal, usually prepared and served outdoors. (Two notable exceptions are Italy and Korea, where much of the grilling takes place indoors in the fall and winter.)
Thus, for practical purposes, the meaning of barbecue in this book embraces the ancient art of cooking with live fire, a specific cooking technique involving wood smoke, a series of iconic dishes, a meal prepared and eaten outdoors, and a communal food experience. When I say “barbecue,” as in “Planet Barbecue,” I mean all of the above.
Almost two million years ago, our prehistoric ancestors discovered the art of cooking with live fire...For the past fifteen years, I have traveled the world’s barbecue trail, and for the past five years, I have visited over fifty countries on six continents to research this book.
In it you’ll find every imaginable variation on a theme of grilling, barbecuing, and smoking--from the rustic fogo de ch ão (campfire cooking) of Brazil to the high-tech grilling of Spain’s culinary avant-garde. I’ve covered every major food group--from the obvious beef, pork, lamb, and seafood to less expected grilled salads, breads, and desserts. I’ve included all the icons of barbecue--ribs, brisket, shish kebab, bistecca alla fiorentina--as well as many of Planet Barbecue’s singular dishes, such as Colombia’s lomo al trapo (beef tenderloin wrapped up with salt in a cotton cloth and roasted on the embers) and grilled ice cream from Azerbaijan.
I hope reading and cooking from Planet Barbecue! gives you as much pleasure as I had researching and writing it.
Excerpted from Planet Barbecue! by Steven Raichlen, copyright © 2010. Published by Workman Publishing.
For a detailed description & pricing information on Planet Barbecue hardcover click here & paperback click here.
By the time I arrived at the sprawling churrascaria in southern Brazil, the wedding party was in full swing. So were a half-dozen birthdays, a retirement celebration, numerous extended family dinners, and a bevy of hot Saturday night dates. And to serve them, a forest of spits spun furiously on a charcoal-fired rotisserie several yards long. Welcome to Galpão Crioulo (“Creole Grange”--a country-style grill joint in Brazil’s barbecue capital, Porto Alegre, with room enough to feed you and the population of several small cities. This cinnamon-grilled pineapple comes served on a spit, just like Brazilian rotisseried meats, and the waiter carves thin slices onto the plate... You can certainly serve the fruit with meat, but it also makes a stunningly original dessert.
Serves 6 to 8
1 whole ripe golden pineapple
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
3 tablespoons butter, melted
Spiced whipped cream
1. Cut the crown (the leafy part) off the pineapple and carefully cut the rind off the fruit. Using a sharp knife, make a series of spiral cuts to remove the eyes.
2. Place the sugar, cinnamon, and cloves in a bowl and stir to mix.
3. Set up the grill for spit roasting, following the manufacturer’s instructions and preheat the grill as hot as it will go.
4. Thread the pineapple onto the spit lengthwise so the spit passes through the middle of the fruit (or thread it the traditional way--crosswise). Brush the outside of the pineapple with about 1 tablespoon of butter. Working over a tray or sheet pan, sprinkle one-third of the spice and sugar mixture over the pineapple on all sides and on the ends to crust it as thickly and as evenly as possible.
5. When ready to cook, attach the spit to the grill and turn on the motor. Spit-roast the pineapple until it is darkly browned on the outside, 15 to 30 minutes in all, depending on how hot the fire is (covering the rotisserie will make it even hotter). When the pineapple starts to brown, after 5 to 10 minutes, brush it on all sides with more butter and sprinkle more spiced sugar over it; shake the sugar bowl right over the pineapple as it turns on the rotisserie. Repeat after 5 minutes with the remaining butter and sugar, then continue spit roasting until the pineapple is darkly browned and thickly crusted with sugar.
6. Take the spit to the table and thinly slice the pineapple onto plates. (To be strictly authentic, once the crust of the pineapple is carved off the spit, you’d sprinkle the fruit with more spiced sugar and spit roast it again until darkly browned once more, continuing until all of the sugar mixture has been used up and all the pineapple has been served.) Alternatively, you can remove the pineapple from the spit and cut it crosswise into slices; this is a little more user-friendly in a home setting. Serve the pineapple slices with whipped cream, if desired.
Note: In keeping with Brazil, you could flavor the whipped cream with cachaça (a Brazilian cane spirit) instead of rum.
“Spit-Roasted Pineapple” without the Rotisserie: If you don’t have a rotisserie, you can cut the pineapple crosswise into 1/2-inch slices, coat each in butter and sugar, and brown the slices on the well-oiled grate of a raging-hot grill.
Above photos by Ben Fink
Reprinted from Planet Barbecue! by Steven Raichlen, copyright © 2010. Reprinted with permission of Workman Publishing.
Steven Raichlen (left, photography by Sylvia Pedras/Courtesy of Steven Raichlen and Primal Grill™) is America’s "master griller" (Esquire). In addition to his
bestselling, award-winning cookbooks, including The Barbecue Bible, How to Grill, and BBQ USA, articles by him appear regularly in Food & Wine, Bon Appetit, and other magazines and newspapers. He was host of PBS's
popular series Barbecue University and Primal Grill. Bon Appetit named him Cooking Teacher of the Year (2003). He has won 5 James Beard Awards, including two for his High-Flavor, Low-Fat series. He lives and grills in Coconut Grove, Florida and on Martha's Vineyard,