‘Social Networking’ is a funny ‘ol world eh! I’ve never actually met Jon (as of March ’22) but honestly count him as a friend.
Not only is Jon on my list of ‘Top Accounts to Follow on Instagram‘ but he’s also started a feature on his channel called ‘Jon’s BBQ Book Club’ where he provides a valuable and trusted review of BBQ books he’s purchased with his hard-earned cash.
Jon’s reviews are loved by the BBQ Community and rather than his hard work being lost in the never-ending sea of social posts I asked if he wanted to store them on the ‘Smoke & Sear’ platform . . . so here they are:
Let there be Meat
By James Douglas and Scott Munro
This weeks book review / recommendation is “Let there be Meat “ by James Douglas and Scott Munro the founders of Reds BBQ restaurants.
This was my first proper BBQ cook book and really got me interested in true American BBQ.
The book covers regional differences in the USA from the meat to the rubs, sauces and the different cooking methods.
The book has chapters covering rubs, meats, side-dishes and even shows how to cook a whole hog.
The recipes are easy-to-follow with a list of ingredients and step by step instructions on how to produce these amazing dishes. Best of all the photos are fantastic which always helps knowing your creations look similar
I recommend this book for anyone who has a interest in cooking BBQ with the informative BBQ set up and the easy to follow recipes.
Thanks for reading my first BBQ book review it’s much appreciated.
By Bill Kim
Korean BBQ by Bill Kim who became a Korean American in 1977 when his family landed in Chicago after emigrating from Seoul South Korea.
His early years in America were difficult . . . he found himself in a new country and unable to speak the language, but over the years (through the love of food) Bill has became a classically trained cook, successful restaurant owner and writer.
The book’s introduction is all about Bill Kim’s life growing up in Chicago, the difficulties he had to overcome and how’s he journey into food started.
The Korean BBQ is all about Korean flavours mixed with American influences. The beginning of the book has the usual BBQing basics and also covers what you should have in your Korean BBQ pantry.
The rest of the book has 9 Chapter starting with Master Sauces and seasonings. The other chapters include BBQ meats (which has recipes like Korean BBQ skirt steak, Drunken BBQ lamb chops and Honey Soy Flank steak).
Next we have BBQ poultry which has some crazy chicken recipes.
Other chapters include BBQ fish / shellfish, vegetables and Tofu, sides and even sweet stuff, but what makes this book very different from other cook books I own or read is it has a full chapter on how to use your leftovers (great idea).
I must just say I have waited awhile for the book to be delivered,
I have only just received the book this week but have made some seasonings and a couple of sauces which I will be using this weekend
Another brilliant BBQ book and totally different spin on recipes and those flavours are off the chart.
So it’s big recommend for anyone who has a interest in BBQING and using Eastern flavours.
The Rodney Scott World Of BBQ
By Rodney Scott
This is some serious Southern Style BBQ!
The book starts with a introduction into Rodney’s journey as a child and how he has become a true BBQ legend. I found this part of the brilliant; a real insight into life in ‘The South’ and how he learnt his trade whilst also covering the massive up and downs he had along the way. I would have bought this book just for the first chapter in all honesty.
As with most cook books there are various chapters and this book is no different.
There is a chapter which incorporates recipes for the grill which includes Smoked Prime. Rib, Rodney’s Spare Ribs and one of my favourites Lemon and Herb Chicken.
The following chapter has to be one of the best in any of my cook books it’s all about Rodney’s Barbecue style. This is off the scale and includes building your own pit to roast a whole hog on, starting the fire and then the whole process of barbecuing the whole hog on a live fire, just brilliant in my opinion,
The other chapters include recipes from the stove (not sure where can source catfish from lol).
Snacks, salads and veg ,desserts, cocktails and a great chapter named ‘The Pantry’ which includes rubs, seasonings and sauces.
So if you are looking for a recipe book with true Southern BBQ at its core this has to be the one.
I highly recommend this book not just for the recipes but for the Southern BBQ history.
Thank you all again for taking time to read this my honest review.
The Hangfire Cookbook
By Sam and Shauna
Hi all and welcome to another BBQ book recommendation / review.
Todays book is “The Hangfire Cookbook by @samandshaunaofficial these 2 ladies have bossed the UK BBQ scene for a number of years and have got some incredible recipes in this brilliant book.
Sam and Shauna love for BBQ started after a American Road trip and probably changed their lives for ever. This book tells the story of the great road trip and the fantastic food they encountered.
The book (like most others) has an introduction which covers things like what basic tools you need to BBQ, how to use smoking wood and charcoal, a grilling set up guide and the best bit covers how to build your own smoker.
The next chapter covers rubs and sauces and there’s some absolutely cracking recipes which are so easy to follow. Recipes include rubs and seasonings from Louisiana and Alabama (including the ever-popular white BBQ sauce). In between each chapter there’s a few pages giving you an insight into the different states they explored, the restaurants they visited and the brilliant food the came across.
The next chapter in the book is all to do with meat and this covers everything from ribs, brisket, pulled pork, steaks, lamb, chicken and turkey. They also cover how you how can make your own Texas Hot links, however, the one recipe which jumps out to me is ‘The Hot Pig Wings’ which are pork shanks which are basically Mini Ham Hocks.
The following chapter which is sides, pickles and buns I think really makes the book different from most other BBQ cook books. The range of sides are fantastic, granted some are not what you’d find in a traditional BBQ joint, but who cares. The sides include Jambalaya with smoked chicken, Andouille sausage (which there is recipe for making your own) & shrimp there is also Gumbo.
The other sides include pit beans, various slaws and some amazing pickles.
The following chapter covers drinks and desserts which has the classic key lime pie, pumpkin pie and my favourite pecan pie.
After purchasing hundreds of cookbook over the years I think in my opinion if you had to buy one BBQ cook book this should be the one, it’s great for people who are new to barbecue. Simple to follow recipes with an insight into the area the recipes are from.
Thank you for reading my book review it’s always appreciated.
By Genevieve Taylor
It’s Friday and today’s book review and recommendation is a fantastic unique vegetarian BBQ book “Charred” from the lovely talented @genevieveeats.
Until now vegetarian BBQ was very limited to a few recipes but this book has changed all that. The recipes are extremely varied, use some fantastic ingredients and are very easy to follow.
Another great addition to this book is the key which is at the top of each recipe, this shows if the dish is best suited to be cooked on the BBQ, oven, griddle, pan etc or is vegan dish.
The book starts with a introduction which explains the recipes and the trick to achieving those lovely charred and caramelised flavours we usually associate with meat. Also within this chapter it covers the equipment the @genevieveeats uses and are invaluable to recreating these lovely dishes.
The next part of this chapter explains the techniques you need to think about when BBQing, smoking or grilling vegetables and is very informative.
The 2nd chapter is all about the “Kebab” where the recipes are easy to follow with a clear method and list of ingredients. Key dishes included are Yakitori tofu, pineapple and red pepper, jerk spiced plantain and shallot & halloumi.
The next chapter is “burger fritters”. Some brilliant recipes here as a great alternative to the traditional meat burger we all seem to cook.
The next chapter “low, slow and smoked”, this is a fantastic chapter with recipes which include smoked whole celeriac and my favourite slow cooked swede wedges with Jack Daniels and peppercorn cream sauce.
Next, “Stuffed and Wrapped” chapter covers some great dishes using fantastic flavours and ingredients which include Romano peppers stuffed with polenta, Parmesan, sage and crispy capers.
The final chapter covers sharing plates which is brilliant when family and friends come around, its variety of recipes are inspiring with my favourite being Oyster mushroom and baby corn with Satay sauce.
I have found this book to be a great addition to my BBQ book library and would definitely recommend it, it has it all very informative, brilliant recipes with some great ingredients.
Hope his weeks book review has helped with your next book purchase.
By James & Thom Elliot
The book I am reviewing today is “Pizza Pilgrims ” by James & Thom Elliot with recipes from the back streets of Italy.
James & Thom had normal jobs like everyone else but decided one night, after a few beers, to give up their jobs and follow a dream of starting a street food pizza company.
Their journey begun with them purchasing an Italian Piaggio Ape van in Italy and driving it back to London. On the route back home they travelled through numerous Italian regions and made key stops at producers who sourced / manufactured the perfect ingredients for their pizzas.
The book begins with the introduction which explains how they started, the journey, the pizza pilgrimage, the producers and the region’s they stop in.
The book has 5 chapters including street food & snacks, starters, pizzas, mains and pudding & drinks
All the recipes are well laid out with a clear description on how to cook the recipes and also the amount it serves (which I found particularly useful).
The main chapter is the pizza chapter which gives you the history of the pizza and highlighting the difference between Neapolitan and Roman pizza.
The Neapolitan pizza is the one James and Thom we’re more interested in, this chapter of the book is fascinating and covers making the dough including invaluable techniques and methods on how to create the perfect Neapolitan pizza dough and prepare the perfect pizza base (one we all struggle with).
The pizza combinations are brilliant and the flavours are fantastic and include fennel, ricotta and chilli also Portobello mushrooms and smoked garlic oil.
Within the pizza chapter they also cover variants using Neapolitan dough which has some great recipes for pizza Chelsea buns and Saltimbocca (pizza sandwiches)
The mains chapter has some fantastic recipes from “The Neapolitan Ragu Sunday Dinner” which has beef brisket, pork ribs and sausage to “Truly authentic Tuscan Bread soup”
Finally the puddings and drink chapter this has some awesome puddings ranging from Cannoli with Moscato originating from Sicily and Italian rice pudding
Finally they cover drinks that you can make to go with all this fantastic food from homemade limoncello to the Negroni.
Thanks again for reading my book review as always it’s much appreciated
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