Has the last word been written on barbecue and grilling? Of course not: The approach of summer brings a new batch of books each year. Five of our favorites this year:
“12 Bones Smokehouse: A Mountain BBQ Cookbook,” by Bryan and Angela King, Shane Heavner and Mackensy Lunsford (Voyageur Press, $24.99). A trip to Asheville isn’t complete without a stop at one of the locations of 12 Bones for those ribs with the blueberry chipotle sauce and that amazing smoked potato salad. Now they’ve put those recipes, and a lot more, on paper. Prepare to smear these pages.
“Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto,” by Aaron Franklin and Jordan Mackay (Ten Speed Press, $29.99) When Aaron Franklin of Franklin Barbecue in Austin won Best Chef: Southwest at the James Beard Awards earlier this month, it was a shout of legitimacy for wood-cooking fiends everywhere. While it has recipes, his book is more about methods and the cooking life for serious barbecue fans.
“Hog: Perfect Pork Recipes from the Snout to the Squeak,” by Richard H. Turner (Mitchell Beazley, $34.99). This book isn’t only about barbecue. But around here, pork is barbecue. This covers just about every way you can put pork over fire, along with a lot more.
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“The Barbecue Lover’s Big Book of Sauces,” by Cheryl and Bill Jamison (Harvard Common Press, $18.95). With seven earlier books, the Jamisons have been writing about outdoor cooking as long as anyone. This one has 225 useful recipes for sauces, rubs, marinades and salsas. When you’re cooking in the backyard, you want the Jamisons out there with you.
“BBQ Bistro,” by Karen Adler and Judith Fertig (Running Press, $20). Who says grilling has to be gritty – or only done by men? Adler and Fertig bring a French inspiration to turning grilling into cuisine.