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The Prophets of Smoked Meat: A Journey Through Texas Barbecue Hardcover – May 14, 2013
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From the Back Cover
The comprehensive, must-have guide to Texas barbecue, including pitmasters' recipes, tales of the road—from country meat markets to roadside stands—and a panoramic look at the Lone Star State, where smoked meat is sacred
Brisket. Spareribs. Beef sausage. Pulled pork. From the science of heat to the alchemy of rubs, from the hill country to the badlands, The Prophets of Smoked Meat takes readers on a pilgrimage to discover the heart and soul of Texas barbecue.
Join Daniel "BBQ Snob" Vaughn—host of the popular blog Full Custom Gospel BBQ and acknowledged barbecue expert—and photographer Nicholas McWhirter as they trek across more than 10,000 miles to sample the wood-smoking traditions of the Lone Star State's four distinct barbecue styles:
- East Texas style, essentially the hickory-smoked, sauce-coated barbecue with which most Americans are familiar.
- Central Texas "meat market" style, in which spice-rubbed meat is cooked over indirect heat from pecan or oak wood, a method that originated in the butcher shops of German and Czech immigrants.
- Hill Country "cowboy style," which involves direct heat cooking over mesquite coals and uses goat and mutton as well as beef and pork.
- South Texas barbacoa, in which whole beef heads are traditionally cooked in pits dug into the earth.
Including recipes from longtime pitmasters and new barbecue stars, The Prophets of Smoked Meat encompasses the entire panorama of Texas barbecue. Illustrated throughout with lush, full-color photographs of the food, the people, and the stunning landscapes of the Lone Star State, The Prophets of Smoked Meat is the new gospel of Texas barbecue, essential for neophytes and seasoned experts alike.
Top Customer Reviews
I expected a lot of interviews with pitmasters, old-timers and the like but it seems that at most places the guy who knew what he was doing is long dead and the current owners are relatively hapless. There is little here in the way of secrets, recipes, behind the scenes knowledge, or classic stories and legends. And apparently a shocking number of the places they stopped closed down shortly thereafter.
The writing is fairly straightforward and quite amusing at times. The photography is excellent, although the author appears in most of the photos, so you kind of get to feeling like you're watching Uncle Harry's vacation slides after a while.
This is not a bad book if you understand what to expect. That said, I can say I enjoyed reading it once (from the local public library) but it won't find a place in my permanent collection.
If they don't have BBQ that hasn't been sitting around for a day or two, he shouldn't even bother sampling it, he should just find a place that does have something cooked that day.
Texas barbecue is an art. This is a fine introduction to that art, and to the artists who create it. My favorite part of the book is the pit master profiles at the end: great portraits and wonderful insights on their process! The photographs are beautiful; with the exception of the chapter focusing on Houston and Dallas, there simply aren't enough of them. I would have enjoyed a little less "I'm from Ohio, but I love Texas Barbecue!" (Dude, you've just described eating at 30 BBQ joints in 36 hours - you don't need to tell us you like 'cue) and more of those lovely photos.
I'm still trying to figure out how these guys don't weigh 450 pounds, have dodged diabetes, hypertension, and gout, and remain married.
A very entertaining trip through the heart of Brisket, Rib, and Sausage Shangri-la.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
it's a good read, not a great read. He really doesn't provide me with anything I don't already know about BBQ.Published 1 month ago by Frank
Born and raised in texas...naturally I would become a bbq man...I got hooked after reading Aaron Franklins book..a meat-smoking manifesto.... Read morePublished 4 months ago by oscar
Vaughn travels through Texas searching for bbq perfection. The book includes lots of great photos and interesting anecdotes about each place he visits. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Jackson Herod