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on August 9, 2017
Very simple ingredient recipe book and one that my lifetime chef liked to use...which in itself tells you this is the book to buy. I borrowed his and after browsing through the book and seeing how simple the recipes were with normal spices, I had to have my own. I have now cooked several different items out of the book and all of them have tasted great and were easy to prepare with the use of this book.
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on May 20, 2013
If you are new to BBQ smoking in my opinion there is no one book you can buy. Everyone that writes one has a point of view. What I have found is you really need a core of three books I have found helpful and then possibly two more. Also there is a lot on the web, but there is one site I have found particularly helpful.

I have tried smoking before with bullet grills with some success, but it takes a lot of minding. I finally broke down and bought the Texas Traeger pellet grill just for smoking. I love it. Now the problem is most cookbooks on smoking do not address this type of smoker head on so if you want to lean how to really use one I have found you need to look at a variety of sources.

Here is my take:
Once you understand temperature in relation to smoke and timing you can translate any indirect recipe to a pellet grill or any other type of smoker. There are some tricks/tips that will enhance the cooking, but in the end it all comes down to temperature and time.

Here are the books that I have found most helpful in descending order. I would invest in all five if you are serious about this. I look at two things; technical information and recipes.

Slow Fire by Ray "DR. BBQ" Lampe - Excellent from a technical standpoint. A great foundation in terms of understanding smoking (slow cooking) and good basic recipes. It is the first book I would buy.

Backyard BBQ The Art of Smokology by Richard W. McPeake - Great in terms of technical. If you study this book along with Lemke's you will really get a handle on the technical aspects of smoking. The recipes are pretty basic, but that is OK if you are new at this.

Smoke & Spice by Cheryl Alters Jamison and Bill Jamison - OK technical, but once you have that down good recipes and good guidance on time and temperature,

Championship Barbecue by Paul Kirk - Good technical compliment to the first two above. This however is more a smoke and grilling cookbook as more than half the recipes are grilled ones. He also has a habit of trying to replicate indoor recipes to the grill. I have no idea why you would do that. A lot of the recipes seem like let me throw this against the wall and see what sticks. That said he has some good smoked ones and his mustard slaughters really work, Thought everything using them would taste like a hot dog, but they enhance the flavor with no mustard taste. Obviously I am a little conflicted by this book.

BBQ USA by Steven Raichlen _ more of a grilling cookbook, but he has some good smoker recipes. I am a fan of his for grilling; I have five of his cookbooks. Again from a smoking perspective this is the last of the five, but it and his others are great if you grill as well.

Last do poke around the website amazingribs.com. It is not just about ribs and has a wealth of information.

Do not assume that any of these recipes will be spot on in terms of your particular grill. As all the authors say you have to learn your grill so do not try any recipe for the first time for company. As many of the authors say smoked BBQ will be ready when it is done.

Again it is all about learning about time and temperature for your particular grill.
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on July 14, 2012
This is a bit of a strange book. It's all about smoking, that part you knew, but its recipes and directions are actually in different sections. For example, a chicken recipe might discuss marinating or brining the chicken, but it won't say anything about temperature to cook at or the temperature to cook the meat to. Other sections in the book discuss cooking temperature, etc. It's a little weird, but I do like the book.

The sauces I've made from the book are good, the breakdown of rubs and marinades is interesting.

I have three (minor) gripes. First is that the recipe sizes for the sauces are very large (one recipe makes 2.5 quarts, I cut it down by a factor of six). The second is that the organization is a bit unwieldy: a marinade might contain a recipe for a rub on another page that contains a portion of a spice mix from another page. It's a bit jarring. The third is that it's a bit ingredient heavy. There's lemon pepper, garlic salt, corn syrup, Kitchen Bouquet, Pick-A-Peppa sauce, seasoned salt, the list goes on.

Four stars. I would definitely buy it again and the recipes are solid, but there are a few issues.

*** UPDATE 4/13/2013 ***

I should really add that the "Take My Breath Away" BBQ Sauce is amazing and is easily my favorite sauce.
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on September 2, 2012
My family LOVES when I bust this book out and start mixing rubs and marinades and mops...the end products are delicious, full of many layers of flavors, while the meat is always fall-apart-tender and moist. If I could, I would rate the recipes a 5, and the writing and organization a 3. So I met in the middle, giving the book an overall 4. But, to me, the recipes are what really matter. I have tried many of the recipes, all are worth the flipping back and forth from the marinade recipe to the rub recipe to mop recipe to the time recommendations, etc. They are also worth the many ingredients that are called for.

However, I do not agree with the few 5 star reviews that report that the book is "easy to follow" or for beginners. I believe beginners may get overwhelmed trying to find their way through 3 or 4 recipes just to make one smoked product. Also, I have "guessed" a few times, as I wasn't quite clear on parts of some of the recipes, but everything has always turned out great, so I guess I guessed well!

I do not agree, either, with the one and two star reviews which complain that grammar and organization make the book a disaster. I don't recall any of them reporting that they actually tried any of the recipes. How can you rate a cookbook without trying the recipes? That does not seem fair.

Just a note also highlighted by other reviewers; the recipes tend to be way too large for the amount a single family would require, but I have taken time to quarter or third them for more appropriate proportions.

Ultimately, my family has loved every recipe I have tried, from chicken, to pork (ribs, loin, and pulled), to jambalaya and smoked mushrooms. Smoking meats is somewhat laborious, but oh-so worth it! If you enjoy savory, melt-in-your-mouth smoked meats, it is worth it to give the recipes in this book a try.

Recommended!
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on July 19, 2017
I have a number of books on smoking meat and this one is by far the best. Concise instructions and many recipes for meats, rubs, mops, and injections. I've been using the book over 6 years.
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on August 25, 2010
Over the past few months I have gotten into the art of smoking food and have purchased a few books on the subject and read numerous websites in a quest to learn more. I decided to give this book a look after reading the mostly positive reviews, and after receiving it and checking it out, I am glad I did.

The first portion of the book (around 80-90 pages) is dedicated to educating the reader on the art of smoking. Everything from techniques, terminology, building fires, selecting and prepping various meats, to temperatures & times for the various cuts are covered, and covered pretty well. The second portion of the book gives you plenty of recipes to try out. The selection is pretty good and varied enough that it should have something for everyone. Everything from sauces, cures, dry rubs, marinades, individual sections for each type of meat, and side dishes are included.

Other reviewers have mentioned that the book really could have used another run through an editor to catch a few grammatical errors here and there. While that is true, and it honestly should be corrected, it didn't take away much from my enjoyment of the product itself. I ordered this book to learn a bit more about 'que and hopefully give me some tips that would improve the food that I serve to family and friends, and I think it accomplishes that just fine.

I would definitely recommend the book to anyone who has an interest in smoking, but is looking to learn more. I have read the author also has published more recent book(s) that cover the same subject matter, so it may be worth investigating that before purchasing this. Still, as I said earlier, if you love the smell of meat smoking away while sipping an ice-cold beer on a warm summer day, this book belongs in your library.
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on July 14, 2013
I received a gas smoker for Christmas, and I really needed some good tips for smoking meat, so I logged on to amazon.com and started my search for a book that would help me smoke award winning meat. There are many books on here about smoking, but after reading many reviews I thought this was the book for me. When it came in the mail I sat down and read it from front to back, very educational! The grammar was a bit off, but what can I say, he is a BBQ artist not a book writer!
I picked out a recipe for pulled pork, reason being cheap piece of meat and very hard to screw up, I followed his rub recipe and mop recipe, kept the temp where the book told me to keep it and bam yummo. Buy this awesome book!
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on August 22, 2015
This is perhaps the best book on smoking food. If you,ve never done it and want to, get this book, you'll be amazed at how fast you'll become a pro. Simple and straightforward, he gives you recipes and technique , all in a simple reference method. I use this book all the time, I wouldn't be without it. I learned how to smoke food from this very valuable learning tool.
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on January 22, 2016
This book is a must have for anyone getting into BBQ and slow smoking. This was my introduction into home barbecue and help minimize mistakes. It covers everything from cooking temps, meat temps, which woods to use and when, making rubs, brines, and sauces, etc. I got this for myself a few years ago, another for my brother who is getting into smoking, and lent, but never got back from a buddy awhile back. Gonna have to get another copy soon!
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on September 26, 2017
Arrived on time. Great book.
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