BBQ. Barbecue. Barbeque. Bar B Que. No matter how you spell it, it is a phenomenon that has a fanatic following in all areas of the country and around the world. Barbecue is basic to cooking. Meat sizzling over open flame or slowly cooked in smoke. In this section you will learn where it all began and how people in different regions practice this ancient art.
Barbecue is a hotly debated topic. Read here about a new definition of BBQ that is distinct from its legal definition. This new definition includes explanations of grilling, smoking and other terms, as well as a brief history of barbecue around the world
How did barbecue originate? There are many mythical stories of neanderthals coming upon burnt animals after a forest fire. Here is a similar explanation of the ancient Chinese discovery of barbecue told in an engaging, fanciful, and humorous tale in 1822 by English essayist Charles Lamb.
Barbecue was not invented in America. Here is the true story of where barbecue came from and how it evolved, including the evolution of BBQ cooks, cookers, restaurants, and foods. You may be surprised to learn that the history of barbecue goes further back than China and even further back than homo sapiens.
Barbecue competitions have become big business with prizes ranging up to $100,000 and some getting national television coverage. Here is the fascinating story of how these contests started in Hawaii "For Men Only," and how they became a popular sport with more than 500 annual events.
If you're a BBQ team interested in finding ways to better your scores, judging contests is a great way to see the other side of the turn-in table. I had the chance to judge four of the country's most prestigious contests and here is a breakdown of my experiences testing some of the best and worst competition BBQ.
How was barbecue sauce invented? By whom? When? Learn the fascinating history of how BBQ sauce evolved from Chinese sweet and sour sauce. You'll find out about the first written mentions of barbecue sauce (in the 1800s), the first written recipes, and the evolution of today's best loved commercial bottled BBQ sauces.
President Lyndon Johnson loved barbecue and with his chef, the self-proclaimed "Barbecue King" Walter Jetton, LBJ invented barbecue diplomacy. Read the historical tales, see the photos, and get some recipes from LBJ's West Texas barbecues that featured whole animals cooked over open pits and plenty of greasy palms.
In northeast Spain, Catalonia is a land of culinary riches and the heart of the Mediterranean diet. For centuries, Catalans have fought to maintain its unique cultural identity. Every spring Catalans celebrate the local vegetable, calcots, with a neighborhood BBQ. Read more about this venerable Catalan tradition.