Fried Pork Sandwich and Potato Salad Recipes from a Famous Pitmaster

Whether you’re responsible for slow cooking meats, flipping burgers, or preparing sides like potato salad and baked beans, barbecues are a summertime rite of passage. They represent community, sharing and, of course, delicious comfort food, along with memories that keep us satisfied long after climate change.

For pitmaster Kevin Bludso, the childhood summers he spent in Corsicana, Texas cooking alongside his aunt Willie Mae Fields (whom he calls “granny”) helped fuel his adult aspirations .

“As a chef, your family is your guinea pig before you go out into the world and think you can serve the barbecue or the food of the world,” says Bludso, who opened his Bludso barbecue as a take-out stand in his town. native of Compton, California. , in 2008. “You have to become a great leader in the family and everyone in the family has their role. Aunt is still making the potato salad, uncle is still on the grill. When you have these types of roles and levels of importance in the family, you create high expectations for yourself.

Bludso’s Bar & Que flagship in Hollywood is still going strong, and it’s even expanded across the world with San Antone, a restaurant and bar in Melbourne, Australia. Bludso’s Bar & Que is frequently on America’s Best BBQ lists and has earned chef appearances on the Food Network. Dinners, drive-ins and dives series, in addition to serving as a judge on the Netflix competition show The American barbecue test.

As one of the chefs responsible for establishing LA as a legitimate barbecue destination, loyal diners have been asking Bludso for a cookbook for years. They finally got their wish with Bludso’s BBQ Cookbook: A Family Affair in Smoke and Soulwhich he co-wrote with Noah Galuten, a James Beard Award-nominated cookbook author and former executive chef of Bludso’s Bar & Que, who trained under the pitmaster at his home restaurant in Compton.

The cookbook provides valuable tips for both novice and expert grillers, along with recipes for a variety of gravies and sauces, classic meats, seafood platters, side dishes, entrees for the little one. breakfast, desserts and even holiday spreads. As the title suggests, it’s a tribute to Bludo’s entire family, with stories of his upbringing interspersed with treasured recipes. As a proud Compton native and mentor to a new generation of slow-smoking chefs, Bludso also shouts out his favorite LA restaurants and pitmasters to pay attention to, even highlighting a few of their recipes in the book.

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Rozella J. Cook