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BJ’s Favorite Things To BBQ

It’s Memorial Day weekend which means most of you are planning some sort of backyard BBQ.  There are always so many option on what to grill up that it can be a tough decision.  Here are a few of my favorite things to grill up on a summer day to help your decision making a little easier.I love to grill and it’s not quite summer to me unless I’m cooking food that way a few times a week.  The whole process that goes into grilling is what I love to most.  Picking out a great cut of meat.  Putting a rub on it over night and then throwing that baby on some low heat and let it cook to perfection.  Nothing tastes better than that.

This weekend most of us plan on grilling something up.  These are just a few of my favorite things BBQ, especially with it being Memorial Day Weekend.

5. Steak

Photo by John Moore/Getty Images

I mean seriously, who doesn’t love a good steak?  The key to getting  it nice and tender and full of flavor is a great marinade.  Nothing kills me more than when someone throw some unseasoned meat on the grill and hopes for the best.  Granted, some of the meats natural juices will bring out some of it’s best flavors but you need something to get in there and get it going.

I like to use a simple bottle marinade or a packet you mix up.  It’s quick, simple and pretty cost effective.  The packets aren’t usually more than $1 at the grocery store and in my opinion McCormick has the best variety.  I like to let my steaks sit in the marinade over night, but you can technically just do a couple of hours.  You are getting the most flavor the longer you let it sit in it.  Once that it’s ready, throw it on the grill and enjoy!  I like mine medium rare, so let me know when it’s done.

4. Chicken

courtesy Brooks BBQ facebook

This is another one that I think most people screw up on.  Not on purpose, just rookie mistakes.  You ever have BBQ chicken and the outside is mostly black?  Nothing worse than that.  The key to avoiding the deep char effect is to precook your chicken a little bit in the oven.  By doing that, you cook the insides thoroughly without burning the outside of it.  Delicious.

You have to pick out a good BBQ sauce to go along with your chicken.  My favorite one to use is the bottle Dinosaur BBQ.  It;s not to think like most other sauces and gives the meat a ton of flavor.  Another one I discovered just the other day was one called Sticky Fingers.  They have all different varieties too.  Whether you like a Memphis, Carolina or Texas style they have formulas for them all.  Also, don’t drown your chicken in sauce.  Just some light basting will do the trick.

3. Sausage

Photo courtesy Getty Images

So many different varieties of sausage to grill up where to being?  Kielbasa, bratwurst,knockwurst,chicken sausage and the original Italian sausage.  I like each of these and some stuff goes better with others, but all taste good.

Sausage peppers & onions is my ultimate favorite, but it can get old sometimes.  That’s why I like to mix it up with some bratwurst, Johnsonville of course.  As long as your cooking that up you better do some sauerkraut to go along with it.  Top it off with mustard and your done.

Chicken sausage is something that I just recently started eating more of.  It has some great flavor and less fat.  So a healthier option without losing out on the taste. Always a win.  Al Fresco has a ton of different varieties of chicken sausage and can easily be found at the grocery store.

2. Brisket

courtesy Flickr user Big Belly BBQ n More

Make sure you give yourself the entire day if your going to tackle doing a brisket.  Trust me all the time you put into it is well worth it because it is one of the best things you could ever cook up.

You’ll want to start off with a good rub.  I have my own, but a great cook never reveals his secret.  Lucky for you Food Network has some great brisket rubs for you to check out.   I suggest rubbing the meat over night so it absorbs the most flavor.

Like I said before give yourself all day to do this.  You’ll want to cook it a temperature of 250-275 degrees.   You can do this on your grill or in the oven.  Towards the last couple of hours baste on  some of your favorite BBQ sauce for extra flavor and that nice bark on the outside. The size will determine on your cook time, but the longer the better.  I have made this several times and I have to tell you, there are no leftovers and everyone goes into a BBQ coma afterward.

1. Hamburgers & Hot Dogs

Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

Simple, yes.  A favorite no matter where you go?  You betcha!  You can do all these other things above but sometimes nothing is better than a hamburger or a hot dog.  Summer time staples.

Want my secret to a great burger that’s all kinds of juicy and full of flavor?  Worcester sauce.  That’s right.  Add some of that into your burger meat and you have yourself one awesome burger.  Another thing you can try that I have found is really good is Kens Red Wine Vinaigrette dressing.  Mix some of that into your burger meat for a very unique flavor.  You’ll never have a nasty dried out burger this way.

Hot Dogs are pretty easy, just don’t burn them.  They cook quick and are delicious.  Hot Dogs will always be my favorite thing to grill up.  So many ways to enjoy them too.  There’s sauerkraut, mustard,relish,onions, chili, need I go on?  Notice I didn’t say ketchup?  For kids this is okay, but I’m going to take a page out of chef Anthony Bourdaine’s book and just say that adults shouldn’t ruin a hot dog with ketchup.  Of course you can do whatever you like, but take it from me and lose the red stuff.

So those are my favorite things to grill up, what are some of yours?   Whatever you choose to cook up this weekend I just hope you have a great holiday and don’t forget to salute the men and women of the armed forces.  Happy Memorial Day everyone!

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