Page 17 - May 2021 Barbecue News Magazine
P. 17

barbecue book
I am blessed to have been af-
forded the privilege to write in
this space of Barbecue News
Magazine for almost 20 years
and during that time I believe
I’ve had a fairly good handle on
who is Barbecue News Maga-
zine. By that, I’m referring not
only to the publishers, manage-
ment, ownership, advertisers, et
al, but also the readers; perhaps
more so the readers because
without them the former group
has less of a reason to be here. And while the content presented within these pages is tightly focused, the readership is fairly broad and has tolerances for varied perspectives. Still, I’ve always re- spected this as a family magazine, meaning for me I wouldn’t want to include content I’d feel uncomfortable sharing with my 12-year- old daughter. Now fortunately this has almost always been a non- issue because frankly how outlandish can you get when you’re talking about food and drink. Occasionally there would be a book on cocktails that would include some ribald names for its potent potables, but those were easy to write around. The most notable case was a proposed book I was pitched for a review that seemed to me to be a series of dirty jokes where barbecue recipes had been haphazardly worked in among some X-rated cartoons and carica- tures. I thanked the author for their interest and told them to get back to me when they’d gotten their work published, but I felt rela- tively certain at the time that no publisher was going to print the book (this was before self-publishing took off – I’d have to be more careful with that followup invitation nowadays).
So now imagine my conundrum being faced with a book from a le- gitimate publisher that is full of double-entendre, starting from the cover to the final page. But this time the book is actually pretty good in terms of covering the topic of barbecue and I’ve spent a couple of weeks debating myself on presenting it to you, our read- ers. I’ve decided to do so but with this caveat – turn away now if you feel you would be harmed by humor that would make eighth- grade boys snicker and giggle. This is your last caution. To continue reading is to do so at your own risk. You have been warned.
“Jerkin’ It” by Harry Cox ($17.95, Ulysses Press, 122 pp.) is aptly subtitled “A (Forkin’ Funny) Mouthwatering BBQ Cookbook That Will Leave Meat Lovers Stuffed and Satisfied”. The front cover alone provides an idea of the non-stop laughs that arise from every page that follows. Kudos to the concept artist who came up with a way to make a titillating cover image out of a barbecue dish. As I tried to come up with an overarching statement to describe this
MAY 2021
book, the following came to mind: If, by chance, you were a fan of 90s MTV cartoons, this book can best be described as the only cook- book Beavis and Butthead would ever want to own.
Rest assured, however, Beavis and Butthead would be well fed be- cause beyond the laugh-a-minute gags packed into these pages, there’s also plenty of solid info on making good barbecue. “Just the Tip” Tri-Tip Steak, All-Nighter Low-and-Slow Tender Brisket, For- bidden Fruit-Glazed Ribs, Bow-Chick-A-Wow-Wow Drumsticks, Spread-‘Em-and-Rub-‘Em Spatchcock Chicken – these were the tamely-named dishes I felt I could comfortably share here. In all there are over 50 recipes of varying degrees of creativity but all pre- sented with a suggestive smirk.
This is certainly a book written to inspire laughs as well as great food and I have no doubt everyone can have a great time cooking from it. I would be careful, however, who you’re cooking for – as much as you may like the recipe for Tender Thai Massaged Breasts it may not be the right thing to serve when its your turn to host Bible study group night.
Admittedly, I not often thinking of gut health when I am cooking ‘cue. But I found a new book from America’s Test Kitchen, “Cook for Your Gut Health” ($29.99, 336 pp.) to be very thought-provoking as I turned through its pages. The more I learned about ways to tweak my cooking to better serve my gastrointestinal tract, the more convinced I became that this book had applications within barbecue and outdoor cooking.
Off the top, with recipes like Smoky Chicken and Lentil Soup with Swiss Chard, Grilled Yogurt Chicken and Warm Oat Berry Salad, Grilled Beef Kebabs and Grilled Pork Chops with Sweet Potato Salad, it was instantly apparent there were foods with which I was already familiar. But as I read further I learned I could go much far- ther than just picking out the recipes that used a grill. Cooking for gut health really comes down to the choices you make when you’re
constructing your menu and as- sembling your ingredients.
I have to confess, I was origi- nally skeptical when I picked up this book but somehow it made a switch flip for me. Even as I write this review I know there are parts I want to re-read to better educate myself. I’ll finish with this – if you’re open to some learning on how to change your cooking a bit with the goal improving your gut health, this is the book to begin with.
Jerkin' and Gut Health
  Doug Mosley
Resident Book Guru - 17

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