Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Kansas Masters BBQ Championship

This weekend we will be off to Wichita for the Kansas Masters BBQ Championship. A great little contest in Cowtown and looking forward to it. If you are in the area stop by and see us!

Pueblo Boats Bands and BBQ

What a weekend! We actually got to go to a BBQ contest with the whole family, yep Roni, Keelan and Kelsi all got to go with me and all at the same time.

We left for Pueblo Thursday afternoon and dropped a grill we sold to a guy in Garden City, and continued on to Pueblo. Got there about 6:30 MT and met Mark and Jen Welte of Carcass Cookers at the contest site to unhook trailers and set up. We suddenly realized that it was 8:00 pm and we wanted to get to LaTronica's for supper so we dashed on over and boy are we glad we got there in time.

We helped Frankie cater a 300 person prime rib feed in Pueblo a couple of years back and had never been in Pueblo when his restaurant, LaTronica's, was open. Great Italian food, homemade pasta, lasagna, chicken parm, bread, etc... Nothing fancy, but just excellent food.

Part of the reason we left early was to help Mark cook 120 lbs of brisket, 100 lbs of prime rib and 50 slabs of ribs for the VIP tent for the weekend. All we had to do was cook the meat, and the staff of the Marriott, one of the sponsors, did all the slicing and serving. We cooked the brisket Friday morning, and the prime rib Sat morning, and the ribs Sat afternoon.

All worked well with the VIP cooking. We had a little issue with one of Marks cookers that had the prime rib in, it did not want to get to 270 to get the prime ribs done. So at 11:00 we were scrambling trying to get a couple of the primes in a grill to get them finished, as well as trying to get chicken done for the contest.

We really appreciated Jen, Roni, Keelan and Kelsi since they seasoned and loaded all the ribs while Mark and I were concentrating on getting contest meats turned in.

The Pueblo contest has always been one of my favorites. I enjoy the atmosphere, the people, the teams etc. This year was no exception. Since we were cooking the VIP thing, I did not have a lot of extra time just to visit and hang with everyone, but we had a great time anyway.

The Denny Crane Moment at Dougs of Smoke N The Rockies was exceptional. I think half of the teams were there for a night cap on Friday night. Again that's why I like Colorado contests, no one is a stranger and all are welcome.

Was great to be neighbors to our friends from New Mexico, Mark and Gina Hufford or better known as just Q.

The contest went well. We placed 7th in chicken, 2nd in Brisket, 3rd in Dessert and 6th overall. Not a bad showing considering the talent of the teams that was there.

Our daughter Kelsi placed 2nd in Kids Q with her steak and shrimp. We forgot a couple of steps in the madness of the moment before turn in or I think she might have placed 1st. Although Chris Naslund always does a good job and is hard to beat and he did place 1st.

Got to hand it to Robert Hahn of Flat Broke BBQ out of Garden City. They placed 3rd overall and we were all really happy to see Robert and Jerry do so well!

Congrats to Jim and Adrian of Sweet Peppers for there Grand Champion win. Two great guys and they looked awesome jumping into the river as the tradition continues.

Friday, May 29, 2009

New Cooker

Went to Kansas City a couple of weeks ago and picked up the first cooker that I have ever purchased. I have always built everything before, but when you start needing the big ones on short notice I had to break down and buy it.

We bought a used FE750. In fact it is one that Eddy had in his restaruant in KC. Eddy rebuilt it and put new burn pots and controllers in it before he sold it to Bill about 8 months ago.

I will try to get pics as soon as the camera gets here.

It cooks great, very even from one side to the other. I was a little suprised that the bottom rack cooks slower than product on the top rack even with as much seperation as there is, and with the convection fans.

Just need to get the carport ordered now to get it covered!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

510 lbs of Pulled Pork

A few months ago I had told my sons FFA Chapter that I would cook pork for them for cost and they could sell it as a fund raiser. We thought that if they sold 100 to 150 lbs they would be doing good. Well, Keelan came home yesterday and said they had orders for 510 lbs, I said BS, how much did you really sell, he said 510 lbs! So we spent most of yesterday afternoon working with the FFA advisor trying to figure out the logistics of cooking, pulling and packaging that much pork!

Next week is going to be fun! Along with the FFA pork, we have all the graduation meat and side orders going out. So I am thinking that sleep will not be an option at all next week. Plus we are down to 2 roaster ovens from the 4 that we usually have to do sauce and potato casserole in.

Ahhhh restaurant life, ain't it great!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

North Platte, NE

We will be in North Platte, NE at the Honky Tonk BBQ contest next weekend. Looking forward to seeing our Colorado friends there as well as cooking at "home" in Nebraska.

America's Best BBQ

Finally got my copy of America' Best BBQ - 100 Recipes from America's Best Smokehouses, Pits, Shacks, Rib Joints, Roadhouses, and Restaruants, by Chef Paul Kirk and Ardie A. Davis.

We are proud that Chef Paul asked us to include our Prime Rib in his book. It has been exciting working on the recipe and our 2 page layout (actually Paul and Ardie did most of the work) and watching the book come together.

I have not had time to go through the book page by page yet, but it looks fantastic and I was drooling over the few pages that I have been able to look at. I really think that they should have included a roll of paper towels with each copy!

St Joeseph, MO.

What a great location for a contest. They had 50 teams all parked in the grass around the St Jo Civic Center and they actually had room for another 20 teams or so. I still can't believe that they would let all those rigs pull into the grass and make deep tracks, but they did. Even after all the rain there, everyone got in and out without problems.

Thanks to Tom Supple for putting on a great contest. Tom did an excellant job of making sure that everyone had everything they needed. He even made sure that Fred from 4 Mile Smoking Crew got a chance to meet us since we had not meet after the Jack Last year when Fred was Reserve. I think Tom and Fred spent a little too much time with the teams until the wee hours of Friday night, but thats ok!

I was looking forward to meeting 4 Mile Fred and had a good time visiting with him Friday night and Saturday morning. That is always the highlight of my time at a contest is visiting with old friends and meeting new ones.

Thanks to Andy "Gravy King" and Kim Groneman for the Friday night supper. Fried pork chops and gravy what more can you ask for! There was a lot of other good stuff on the buffet table as well, along with Val's bananna pudding - great stuff Val!

As the teams rolled in, it started to look like an invitational event. There were a lot of great teams there as well as several new teams. Congrats to my neighbors, Burnt Finger BBQ for their calls.

Congrats to JP Custom Smoke for a well deserved Grand Champion. We finished 12th in Chicken, 5th in Ribs, 16th in Pork, and 18th in Brisket with a 3rd place Overall. Thats the 4th contest this year that we have finished in 3rd place!