Smoked Bacon Wrapped Corn

Here is a little something I came up with earlier this month when we bought some farm fresh sweet corn. Typically, when I smoke corn in the husk it gets too dry to suite my tastes. So I decided to try wrapping the ear in bacon prior to smoking it. First, strip back the husks while leaving them attached to the ear of corn. Next wrap a slice of bacon around the ear as shown, sprinkle with your choice of seasonings and wrap the husks back around the ear.

Bacon wrapped corn

Bacon wrapped corn

I tied the ends with some surgical gauze because it was all that was available at the time.

Bacon wrapped corn

Bacon wrapped corn

Then the ears went on the WSM smoker for about 2 hours at 225 degrees with a mix of hickory, pecan and mesquite wood for smoke flavor. Here is the finished product before removing the husks.

Smoked bacon wrapped corn

Smoked bacon wrapped corn

And here is the plated corn with a slice of smoked rolled top round roast and some fresh garden salad.

The corn was juicy and moist with a great flavor. The bacon however, was not completely cooked so it was removed from the corn and cooked until crisp.

Da plate!

Father’s Day 2010

This year we had our Father’s day on Saturday because my daughter is going to Las Vegas tomorrow with one of her friends’ family.
There were a lot of people at our house for burgers and hot dogs today and I think everyone had a great time in the pool and had plenty to eat and drink. Our hot dogs were regular old hot dogs but the burgers were a little different. The burgers were served on 12″ x 12″ ceramic floor tiles because they were so big. We had to cut them into slices and put the slices on plates for individual servings.

Father's Day 2010 Burger 3

Father's Day 2010 Burger 2

Father's Day Burger

Mother’s Day 2010

We decided to keep it simple for Mother’s Day dinner this year. I smoked a small pork butt, a small pork loin roast and a chicken.
Pork Butt with Chocotal Rub

Pork Loin Roast

All the meat turned out as it should have but the cake that a friend made for my wife was the star of the day. It was a heart shaped strawberry cake with white chocolate icing that was covered in chocolate covered strawberries. This cake tasted even better than it looked. Thanks Dianne!
Mother's Day Cake

Easter ham and fruit stuffed fattie

Ham is an Easter tradition for us so it was time to smoke one for Sunday dinner. I usually inject and baste with a mixture of canned pineapple juice, maraschino cherry juice and brown sugar. Today though, I was planning to uses some cherry wood for smoke so I added a box of cherry jello and some ground ginger to the mix.

injecting the ham

The injected ham was smoked on the WSM at 250 to 275 degrees until it reached an internal temperature of 170 degrees. I covered the pan with foil and let it rest for a couple of hours before slicing.
almost done

A fattie was also planned for the day so after the ham was cooking, I took some sliced pineapple, maraschino cherries, brown sugar and ginger and threw then into the food processor. A one pound chub of Jimmy Dean regular sausage was flattened on a sheet of wax paper before adding the fruit puree and rolling it up. Hint… Roll the fattie up into the wax paper and put it in the freezer for a half hour or so to “firm up” before cooking.
fruit fattie

The pan with the ham in it forced me to put the fattie real close to the edge of the cooking grate so it sagged in the middle during the cooking process.
sagging fattie
pineapple-cherry stuffed fattie

Happy Easter from High Desert BBQ!

Christmas in Naco

For the last 10 years or so the Bisbee Rotary Club has hosted “Christmas in Naco.” Naco is actually two sister cities on the Arizona and the state of Sonora, Mexico border just south of Bisbee, Arizona. At 7 am this Christmas morning a number of Bisbee Rotary members and other community/area volunteers met at the Bisbee Bug to load some 30 odd vehicles with food bags, new blankets, coats, shoes and clothes for our less fortunate neighbors in Naco, Sonora, Mexico. We then formed a convoy to a semi-secure area immediately north of the Mexican border where, aided by the US Border Patrol and local authorities from Naco, we parked our vehicles and waited for the first wave of needy Mexican citizens. The wife of the Mayor of Naco, Sonora was instrumental in making sure that the neediest families were allowed to come through first. My family and I have only been here for two Christmas seasons but we have been blessed to be a part of “Christmas in Naco” for both seasons.
Christmas in Naco

Christmas in Naco

Christmas in Naco

Christmas in Naco

Christmas in Naco
Food Bags

Christmas in Naco

Christmas in Naco

Christmas in Naco

Christmas in Naco

Christmas in Naco

Christmas in Naco

Christmas in Naco

Naco, AZ holds the distinction of being the site of the first aerial bombing in the United States..

Hot & Fast Christmas Brisket

My family wanted brisket for Christmas dinner but I had to work most of the day on Christmas Eve and leave at 6 the next morning until nearly noon. There was precious little time to smoke anything at all but I had read about a hot & fast method so I decided to try it.
I got the Pro Q Excel 20 cleaned and ready to smoke on, started a full chimney of Kingsford and went inside to get the 5.5# trimmed brisket flat rubbed with salt, black pepper and garlic powder. That done, it was back outside to dump the lit chimney of coals into the charcoal basket of the Pro Q and seal the smoker up to get it up to temperature. At exactly five minutes till four, I put the brisket on the smoker and checked the internal temperature at 43 degrees. After 45 minutes, the smoker was cooking at 350 degrees and the brisket was at an internal temp of 157. Two hours and five minutes later the brisket was at 204 degrees and ready to spray and wrap. It was in the cooler for two hours before unwrapping to slice.
Hot & Fast Brisket

The meat was juicier that I had expected and had a really nice smoke ring. It was not, however, as tender as I had hoped and most of this one will probably become chopped brisket.
2 hour brisket

Smoked Cheese

I’ve been following several smoked cheese topics on some other sites and decided today to try it for myself. My hopes were to whip up some gift baskets for Christmas gifts if things worked out, which they did.
I finally removed the third stacker for my Pro Q Exel from the box today in preparation for my first “cold smoke.” Eight pieces of Kingsford were started in the chimney while I got a few pieces of cherry ready for the cooker. I put the Kingsford in the fire basket, set the three stackers and the lid in place (with nothing on the grates) and watched my new Tru_Temp start to climb above 100 degrees….. This was not a good way to get started because I need to cold smoke the cheese at least below 90 degrees to keep it from melting. After adding the water pan in the bottom stacker and filling it with cold water, the temp came down to a reasonable range so I proceeded with the experiment. Cherry wood is now in the fire basket. I double foiled two cooking racks and added some sliced smoked sausage and Cure 81 ham chunks to the one that would end up on the bottom.

Cold smoking ham chunks and sliced smoked sausage for Christmas

The cheese, Colby and Monterey Jack were then put on the top rack and the smoker was sealed up.

Cold smoking Colby & Monterey Jack cheeses.

These were cold smoked for a little over an hour at between 75 to 83 degrees and turned out great for the first attempt.

Cold smoked cheese and meats for Christmas goodies

I put one slice of each cheese into a baggie, a few chunks each of ham and smoked sausage into another baggie and finally TownHouse crackers into another before putting them into a small Christmas gift bag to give away to friends and co workers.

Grilled Chicken Fajita Spud

In route to the store this morning I remembered a restaurant where I used to live called The Cabbage Patch. The food was always great but one of my favorites was a chicken fajita spud. Those thoughts made me want one pretty bad. So, I picked up some fajita sliced chicken breast strips, marinade and some nice baking potatoes while at the store.
Once I made it back home, I mixed the marinade and added juice from a couple of limes before adding the chicken. The bowl went to the fridge for about 3 hours before grilling. The baking potatoes were washed and rubbed down with butter before wrapping in foil and being placed in a 350 degree oven. The Teflon coated (coating started coming off the first use) non-stick griddle I bought at Lowes was rubbed down with some EVOO and put on the grill to heat up. Here’s a shot of the chicken fajitas on the grill……

Grilled chicken fajitas

The baked potato is split open and filled with grated cheese, the grilled chicken fajitas, chopped green onions. Then topped with more cheese and home made salsa. Served with a side garden salad and a couple of green onions.
I have to say that this was one tasty meal.

Grilled chicken fajitas

Easy Smoked Brisket

This following is the result of a “Basic Brisket Tutorial” I found on the BBQ Brethren forum and it was one of the best I’ve cooked in quite some time. Looking back, it’s really strange how close this is to the way I started out seasoning and smoking my briskets over thirty years ago. But like many others, in an effort to produce better brisket, I changed tactics with new seasonings, rubs and smoking methods as they became available to me. The lesson learned here was that sometimes it’s better to stick with the basics and KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid). I’m reverting back to the old ways with the Salt, Pepper & a touch of Garlic rub for my briskets from now on.
I started out with a packer between 8 & 9 pounds, trimmed it up and separated the point and flat before smoking. The flat had salt, pepper and garlic powder for seasoning while the point had all those plus a liberal coating of my rub. This was an experiment after all… Here are both cuts after seasoning and ready to rest in the fridge until the next day.
Brisket flat & point ready for the fridge to rest for the night.
They were placed on the Pro Q Exel 20 the next morning at 9 am. Brisket was smoked at 225 until done at an internal of 201 (some habits die hard) around 6 pm.
On the smoker
The last shot is some of the moistest and most tender brisket I’ve had in a long time. If you haven’t tried this, do so. You won’t be sorry.
Brisket as it should be

Thanks bigabyte!

Double Smoked Thanksgiving Ham

This smoke started out with a 10 1/2 pound, fully cooked bone in shank. It was smoked on the Pro Q with a single stacker using Kingsford charcoal and some sweet cherry wood for smoke flavor to an internal temperature of 150 degrees. The ham was injected and glazed with the juice from a can of pineapple, some maraschino cherry juice, apple juice, brown sugar, ground ginger and ground cloves. The mixture was simmered on the stove till a 1/3 reduction was reached.

Double Smoked Ham

We are still enjoying the flavor of this one but it will all be gone soon.