I’ve never been interested in cooking traditional American BBQ, mainly because I do not like what I cannot control, and in this particular case, the BBQ grill is outside of my domain with a fat “trespassing renders marriage contract null and void“ sticker on the front. But to give my husband control over a hunk of brisket roasting away for over 6 hours in a pad-locked container with a 3 inch crusty, scratched plastic window is just way too much stress for my Type-A personality to handle. Is it done? Is it done? What does it look like? Is it ok? Do I need to baste? What if it fell over? Can I take its temperature? CAN I TOUCH??? PULEEEEZZZZE!?
I’d just rather not subject myself to that kind of torture.
So, when I was asked to cook alongside Ray Lampe, the famous “Dr. BBQ” for a charity event to benefit The Crescent City Farmers Market in New Orleans, it was no big deal. So what if he’s a BBQ Grand Champion with a couple hundred awards under his belt, can he pleat perfect dumplings one handed, fold laundry with the other and fend off 2 whining kids? Think not.
We met last week to shoot a few pics to market the event and at first glance, the razor-sharp spiky blonde hair, trophy belly, baggy black shorts, flavor-savor beard and a killer watch tattoo where time stops at 5:01pm was everything I had expected from a man who carried a name, Dr. BBQ, with swaggering authority.
While grilling skewered shrimp for the recipe below, Dr. BBQ casually mentions that he’s the new Executive Chef of Southern Hospitality Restaurant in New York owned by Justin Timberlake.
Holy hickory! I’m only ONE DEGREE OF SEPARATION from “Dick in a Box”!!!
How can I not embrace this larger than life chef who’s on a first name basis with a celebrity that I’d throw my lusty, naked body at? Apparently, the mere thought of SexyBack caused immediate brain damage and I ended up saying stupid things like, “do you ever get mistaken for Guy Fieri’s dad?” Ouch. I think I just insulted my one degree.
Can I CTRL-Z that comment?
Meet Ray, Dr. BBQ
One of the coolest dudes that I’ve met in Florida. You know you’re having a good time when Dr. BBQ interjects his colorful stories with, “This is off the record, ok?” at least 5 times during dinner.
About the charity event:
This event is part of the IACP (International Association of Culinary Professionals) Giveback Charity Event to help restore the hurricane damaged The Crescent City Farmers Market. Join me and 7 other chefs as we cook an 8-course meal in an intimate cooking demonstration and food-gasm event at Rolling Pin’s studio kitchen. Only 35 seats are available.
Guess who else I’m cooking with???? Giuliano Hazan, IACP’s 2007 Cooking School Teacher of the Year and son of grande doyenne of Italian cooking, Marcella Hazan.
Dr. BBQ (Ray Lampe; Cookbook Author and Celebrity Consultant) – Barbecued Barbecue Shrimp Chef Jaden (Jaden Hair; Cookbook Author, Food Writer, Photographer, and Stylist, as well as, Host of SteamyKitchen .com) – Crispy Crawfish Spring Rolls with Sweet Chili Jam Chef Dave (Chef/Owner Rolling Pin) – Chicken and Andouille Sausage Gumbo with Rice Chef Fabrizio (Executive Chef of Pelagia Trattoria) – Seared Diver Scallops on White Bean Ragu Chef Ginch (John McGlinchey; Chef, Instructor and Fine Dining Consultant) – Corn Maque Choux Stuffed Quail with Pomegranate Molasses Chef Gui of Provence (Personal Chef, Owner/Caterer and Food Columnist for St. Petersburg Times) – Cheese Course: Tabasco-marinated Provence Goat Cheese with Slow-baked Fresh Beets and Micro Arugula, Whipped Brie with Okra and Pear Jelly, and Cajun Ossau-Iraty with Artisin Honey. Chef Giuliano Hazan (Cookbook Author and Cooking School Teacher of the Year 2007) – Linguine with Shrimp and Tomato Sauce. “Rib Dog” (John Verville; Master Certified BBQ Judge and Team Leader) – Praline Bread Pudding with Whiskey Hard Sauce
The Rolling Pin in Brandon
Tuesday, March 11th 6:30pm $150-$175 per person
For tickets, call (813) 653-2418 or register online at www.rollingpinonline.com
Dr. BBQ’s Barbecued Barbecue Shrimp
From “Barbecue All Year Long Cookbook”
½ lb unsalted butter
2 bay leaves
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1 tbl freshly ground black pepper
1 tbl paprika
1 tbl Louisiana hot sauce
¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
1 lemon, juiced
½ cup beer
Bamboo skewers, soaked in water for 1 hr
2 lbs jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tsp Dr. BBQ’s Creole Seasoning
Prepare grill to cook direct and medium high. In large skillet on stove, melt the butter on medium heat. Add all other ingredients, except for shrimp and Creole seasoning. Bring to simmer and cook 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
Skewer shrimp with double skewers so they can be flipped easily. Season with Creole seasoning. Grill 1-2 minutes per side, depending on size of shrimp. Remove from skewers and add shrimp to the pan with spiced butter mixture and toss. Return to stove over med-high heat and bring to simmer until shrimp is cooked through. Taste and season with salt if necessary. Serve with lots of crusty bread for sopping up the sauce.