UK BBQ Mag Winter 2016/2017 - Page 56

BBQ in the UK is growing massively, why do you think this is, and where do you see it headed?

I love the UK scene. It's a proper family. No bitch talking, only helpful encouragement from all sides. I like what CountryWoodsmoke has done to build this scene. It's a safe place for all to go and ask questions no matter how basic. Cooking over live fire is an intimidating thing for many people and learning how to maintain your heat is a huge task. Everyone is so welcoming. There's no smack talk. Then we have Grillstock, The Big Grill( Ireland), and Meatopia...three festivals that push the scene of live fire cooking. Meatopia doesn't allow any gas or electric cookers to be used at the chef's booths. I love it here.

The book is going great guns and is inspiring a lot of folk to go for bigger bolder flavours on the BBQ, any plans for another book?

That's the main focus right now. We've already developed around 80 killer recipes. I've been speaking to publishers the last couple months and am trying to find the right home for book number 2. The first book is still selling well and I'm super proud of it. I've learned so much over the past 3 years since writing it and I'm super pumped to get the next one out. I'm a lot better than I was 3 years ago but I'm always learning. I want to do more travelling and see how the rest of the world cooks with live fire. I just returned from southern Portugal with 6 awesome recipe ideas and I'm looking to fly to Porto next month to do more research. I haven't explored much of the north Portugal food scene. The Algarve is my second home. I use to spend summers down there Dj'n and bartending in clubs. My fave places to eat are in Lagos and Burgau, Portugal.

Who inspires your outdoor cooking?

Everyone!!!!! Meeting people from all over the planet and seeing how they cook with fire is the best. All the subscribers on my YouTube channel are amazing with their comments. They ask for specific dishes and I love to answer back with a tasty video recipe. Hosting Meatopia is one of the best experiences as I'm a sponge on that stage. I get to meat the best chefs in the world and ask questions. I take so much away from that festival and I hope the crowd does too. My fav pitmasters and chefs are:

Ray Lampe (Dr. BBQ)

Francis Mallmann

Neil Rankin

Jonathan Sawyer

Niklas Ekstedt

Marco Sheppard

Chris Taylor

Matt Blak

Hang Fire

Tim Byres

Matti Hurrtia

Sean Brock

and all the crew at Hometeam BBQ in Charleston, SC.

What's your number one tip for BBQ beginners?

Cook on charcoal and set your fuel up for indirect cooking. I would recommend the half and half technique. charcoal on one side, none on the other. Goof proof cooking. When fats render down and kiss the coals, you can get flare ups that can get outta hand so having an indirect zone really helps. Get a cooker with a lid so you can turn that grill into an outdoor oven.

Buy well sourced and well made charcoal. Know where your fuel comes from.

What next for DJ BBQ?

I've got a commercial coming out in the states for Kid Rock's new BadAss Grill.

Loads of new recipes will be wielding there way onto my YouTube channel.

I'm also developing some TV program ideas.

Look out for a bunch of my recipes over at FOOD.COM.

And mainly spending more time with my 3 sons.

I might also look at getting a dog.

Go for it if you have anything else you'd like to talk about :)

I found a vintage cookbook last year in a charity shop in Woolwich. It's called "The Way to a Good Table- Electric Cookery" published in 1938. It's a book explaining how to use all these new fangled inventions like refrigerators and electric indoor cookers. It must of been such a foreign thing for people back then to not use live fire. Mankind has always cooked BBQ but it's only been over the last 70+ years that we've switched to gas and electricity which have no flavours and are bad for the earth. Charcoal is a locked system. The trees give us oxygen and they store the carbon, we cook it and release it but it's a circle. It's how it always was and will be. Cooking on gas and electricity release hyrdocarbons which have been buried in the earth for hundreds of thousands of years. They are just warming up the earth. Use charcoal. Use locally made charcoal. Oxford Charcoal cook their woods at lower temperatures to retain the volatiles that can impart wood note flavours to ones bbq. Or make fresh charcoal. Cook on wood. Just get cooking. Go outdoors and light a fire.

Would you have a recipe or video you'd like in the mag? I can add a youtube vid if you have a particular favourite?