While grilling meat over an open flame might be humanity's first foray into cooking, it's a style in which we have stopped striving for perfection—that perfect balance of smoke and sweetness is all due to the flame, the cut of the meat and the grillmaster's ability. Drawing inspiration from the legendary barbecue joints of the American South, London's Pitt Cue Co. has literally pushed barbecue from casual street food to award-winning cuisine. The outfit started with a food cart near the Tate Modern and later opened its doors in Soho to much fanfare—and the queues to go with it. Now the English foursome has distilled their fireside wisdom into a beautiful, full-color, hardcover tome titled simply "The Cookbook."
Over 288-pages, the book features over 120 recipes for everything from salads, sides, slaws, desserts and cocktails, but the main focus is on the meats, rubs and sauces that keep customers lining up at their venue night after night. However it's not just the mouth-watering recipes in this book that make it a must-have for barbecue enthusiasts, perhaps the most useful information is the technical know-how for taking home cooking to next level. From tips on smoking meats, to preparing your own sausages and making the most of your cuts from the butcher, the authors explain and illustrate each process expanding not just on the "how" but also the "why." Despite the technicality of some of the techniques and recipes, a backyard aesthetic and attitude is at the heart of the Pitt Cue Co. way. After all, it's just barbecue.
"The Cookbook" from Pitt Cue Co. hits bookstores 3 June and is currently available for pre-order from Amazon for $25.
Photos by Hans Aschim