The unique American style of barbecuing is nearly as synonymous as our Red, White and Blue.
Though there is a universal shared love for meats cooked to perfection, Americans often argue that their particular styles of barbecue are the best.
As the world’s biggest melting pot, the U.S. is home to many different types of people and cuisine that have evolved into “American” styles that may vary from region-to-region.
Over the years, those differences have created a healthy spirit of competition between grill masters ranging from the neighbor next door, to national competitions held throughout the year.
Because of the marked differences between barbecues in different regions, it’s often referred to by the place where it originated. The seven most common in regards to cooking style and sauce are:
- Kansas City – For years, Kansas City was the hub of the country’s meatpacking industry, and as a result, the barbecue that originated there used “odd ends” of meat long before nose-to-tail cooking became a culinary trend. Today, KC barbecue is associated with burnt ends, pork ribs and brisket, which are topped with spices and rubs and then cooked over hickory wood.
- Carolina – North Carolinians often argue that barbecue was born in the Tar Heel State, and while that’s up for debate, it is clear that the region has its own take on barbecue. Pulled pork with a vinegar-based sauce is king here and is often served on a freshly baked white bun with coleslaw as a topping.
- Texas – They say everything’s bigger in Texas, and that also goes for barbecue. Huge portions of barbecued steaks, brisket and beef ribs are the norm in the Lone Star State. Influenced by the flavors found in Mexico, Texas barbecue often comes with a spicy sauce on the side rather than slathered on top of the meat.
- Georgia – Georgia barbecue is indicative of southern cooking and is made with simple ingredients that transform a tasty slab of grilled pork into a true comfort food. Sauces often start with a ketchup or tomato base, and the pork is served alongside traditional southern sides like cornbread, collard greens and even grits.
- Memphis – In The Bluff City, pork is what you’ll find most often smoking on the grill with ribs, shoulders and butts the most common cuts. Most often, Memphis barbecue is wet marinated in a ketchup and vinegar mix and then basted while cooking and served with coleslaw to make it a meal.
- Chicago – In The Windy City, Chicagoans do their barbecue (and pizza) in their own special way. Beef or pork ribs are what’s usually on the menu for the cookout. Meats receive a vigorous massage with a dry rub seasoning, then quickly seared on a red-hot grill before being placed in the oven until it’s practically falling off the bone.
There is a style of barbecue for every palate, and everyone is free to choose which one is best for them—and what could be more American than that?
For more information visit:
The International Barbecue Cookers Association at http://ibcabbq.org.
World Barbecue Champtionship Contest