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The Chicken Marinade Experiment

The Chicken Marinade Experiment
Stubbs Chicken Marinade vs. First Street Southwest Marinade

Today I decided to conduct a little experiment using a couple of off the shelf marinades. I'm not a big proponent of marinades for barbecue but I figured, what the hell I'll give it a shot. The two marinades I used were Stubbs Chicken Marinade and First Street Southwest Marinade from Smart & Final.

I prepared eight thighs total, four with each marinade. They were all put in the marinades overnight and seasoned with the same rubs.

I cooked them in my MAK Grill 2 Star. I altered my technique a little bit. I smoked the thighs at low temperature in an attempt to get more smoke flavor. Then I cranked it to 300 degrees to finish the cook. When the reached 170 degrees internal, I dunked them in sauce and put them back to caramelize the sauce a bit. The results were quite interesting.

Chicken Thigh with Stubbs Marinade

First off the skin was inedible on both. I'll never do that low temperature smoke again. Second, and more interesting, the skin popped loose and shriveled on all of the Stubbs thighs but not on the First Street thighs. Also the rubs, never seemed to "melt" on the Stubbs thighs. That left them with an unpleasant sandy texture that was not apparent on the First Street thighs. Finally, both sets had a distinct after taste. The First Street thighs had a pronounced jalapeno flavor. It was not unpleasant but it was out of balance with the rubs and the sauce. The Stubbs had a weird after taste with pronounced citrus notes and something else that we couldn't identify.

Chicken Thigh with First Street Mainade

While it could have been a bad mix with my rubs or sauce or the way I cooked them, I would never use the Stubbs marinade again. I would use the First Street marinade for a home meal but never in competition. There were far too many variables for this experiment to be conclusive, so go out and try them on your grill. Experimenting with BBQ is half the fun!

Enjoy!

Bigmista

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Mr Grill - Heat Resistant Oven & Grill Gloves - review

Mr. Grill Heat Resistant Gloves

I had a chance to try out the new Mr. Grill Heat resistant gloves this past week. These are Nomex insulated gloves with a silicone criss-cross pattern on both sides of the gloves. They are ambidextrous so you don't have to figure out which is which during a late night smoking session. (You know there are usually some adult beverages involved so simplicity is a must.)

First, the good. These gloves do a great job of protecting your hands from the heat. If you want to move some pans around on the grill or grab your grates, these are perfect for that. Even though they are relatively thin, the insulation is excellent. They don't compromise your dexterity the way the really thick gloves do.

Now, for the bad. They are too small. They are supposed to be one size fits all but most of the folks in the BBQ community that I know have large hands (and pretty much large everything else.) Medium size just doesn't cut it. I had to get my father-in-law to do most of the testing because I couldn't get my hands all the way in the gloves. Also, because most of the surface area is cloth, I couldn't use the gloves to handle food directly. If the entire surface had been covered with silicone, I could use the gloves to move large pieces of meat as well as moving pans or grates, I would also be able to soap them up, rinse them and use them again right away instead having to change gloves constantly.

In summary, these gloves do a great job of insulating and protecting your hands but they are too small and they are not useful for handling meat.

These might be great for the backyard guy but I will have to keep looking.

Enjoy!

Bigmista

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Soy-Ginger brussels sprouts recipe - Daniel Fast

Soy-ginger Brussels Sprouts over Turmeric Brown Rice - Daniel Fast - From Bigmista This is the second year that me and Mrs. Mista have participated in the Daniel fast at our church. For those of you who aren't familiar, during the fast we avoid eating meat, sugar, caffeine, dairy and white flour. Challenging right? Well it's about sacrifice and cleansing both our body and spirit.

Anyway, here is a recipe I came up with last night  with some inspiration from my friend Traci Anderson.

Soy-ginger Brussels sprouts with turmeric brown rice

1 cup brown rice 1 tbsp chicken bouillon or base 1 tsp seasoning salt 1 tsp turmeric

10 Brussels sprouts rinsed and quartered 1 small onion, cut in half and sliced 1 tbsp minced garlic 2 tbsp Olive oil 2 tbsp low sodium soy sauce 1 tsp ground ginger

Prepare brown rice according to instructions on package but add chicken bouillon, seasoning salt and turmeric to boiling water before you add the rice.

While the rice is cooking, put the Olive oil in a hot skillet. Add the onion and reduce heat to medium. Stir occasionally. When onion begins to brown, add garlic and Brussels sprouts to the skillet.  Cook until edges start to brown. Add the soy sauce and ginger and stir well. Add 1/4 cup of water. Stir quickly and scrap the bottom of the skillet. Cover and cook 5 more minutes.

Serve sprouts over the turmeric brown rice. Eat.

I hope you enjoy this recipe. I will continue to post Daniel Fast recipes as I come up with them

Enjoy!

Bigmista

 

 

 

 

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Ghetto BBQ Lunch

If you have ever been on the other side of broke (no money), then you now Top Ramen is the broke man’s go to meal. Since I was just a shade above broke, I would always added scrambled eggs to mine. Didn’t matter the flavor. Anyway, Neil is gone and I’m hungry. I thought there was chicken in the fridge but no such luck. Since I know Neil always keeps Top Ramen around for me (mostly because I’m a lazy cook now) I figured oh well, noodles and eggs. When I reached for the eggs, I saw some pulled pork Neil had set aside for one of his buddies at U-Haul. I started to switch to the pulled pork but I didn’t know what to eat it with. Then I started eating cold pulled pork while I scrambled my eggs and boiled my noodles. Oh SNAP! I’m gonna put this pulled pork on my noodles. Therefore, I have created what I now call Ghetto BBQ Lunch. Later y’all.

Ghetto BBQ Lunch

 

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Confessions of a dipper - Daniel Fast tips

I confess. I am a snacker. And when I snack, I like to dip. I am a really big dipper. (Insert nerdy astronomy joke here.)

Anyway, one of my struggles on this 21-day Daniel Fast is finding something with which to dip.(My grammar teacher would be so proud that I didn't end that sentence with a preposition.) Corn chips? Out. Tortilla chips? Out. Ruffles? Out. Wheat thins? Out. Pita Bread? Out. Even the humble Saltine? *sniff* Out.

So what was I to do? How would I eat my hummus? How could a savor my salsa? How would I partake of my peanut butter? Would I be relegated to dipping with *shudder* vegetables?

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOoooo...

I was determined to find something to dip with that wasn't fried and didn't have any milk products or enriched white flour. A daunting task indeed. But I scoured the shelves of the local markets and read every label I could find until I came up with three alternatives to fit  the criteria of the fast. Here they are:

 

Triscuits, Special K Potato Crisps, Triscuits with Cracked Pepper and Olive Oil

Both of the Triscuits have the same texture but the have totally different flavors. The original has an almost sweet quality about it. You get the full flavor of the wheat. It's like shredded wheat but more organized. I lliked this on best with some natural peanut butter. No, not Jif or Skippy. Read your Labels.

The Cracked Pepper and Olive Oil Triscuit was the one that had the best flavor of the three. You can tell the used some quality Olive oil and the pepper taste is pronounced but not over powering. This paired best with my chunky olive hummus from Trader Joe's but I would eat these by themselves even if I wasn't fasting.

The Special K Potato Crisps are made from potatoes and brown rice flour. They taste like a potato chip but they are sturdier. They stood up well to salsa and they were my favorite with that dip. Be sure to get the Sea Salt flavor because the other flavors have either milk products or hydrolyzed yeast protein stuff.

Original Triscuit, Special K Potato Crisps, Triscuit with Cracked pepper and Olive Oil

I can rest a little easier now that I know I can take a quick dip whenever I need to. Rats, there goes that preposition.

Please leave a comment to let me know what you think and feel free to share this with your friends.

Enjoy!

Bigmista

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