Review: Ritter’s Barbeque and Catering

Ritter’s Barbeque and Catering 6709 Raytown Road Raytown MO 64133 816-356-6342. On the corner of 67th and Raytown Road. Cost under $10 per meal.

I know what you’re thinking… Barbeque Kansas City should mean Kansas City barbecue but Kansas City bbq is sold all around K.C.. So here we are at another GREAT Barbecue Joint!

As my wife and I were heading home from the Kansas City Zoo, we needed food! So I said “let’s try a new place.” She agreed and we went to Ritter’s Barbeque and Catering.

As we drove into the parking lot, I remembered my first job some 17 years in the same building! At that time it was City Fish and it was OK but nothing compared to the slow smoked goodness that I got this visit!

I ordered the 1/2 pound 1/2 brisket and 1/2 pulled pork sandwich and a side of the cheesy potato bake. The sandwich was wonderful: lightly seasoned and lightly smoked and the texture was melt in your mouth perfectly done! My wife had the 1/2 pound pulled pork sandwich, cheesy potato bake, and potato salad.  She really liked it!

They used their Three Little Pigs BBQ Sauces.  We tried the “Original Competition” and the “KC Sweet.”  I really liked both. I can’t wait to go back and try their “Spicy Chipotle.”

I got the chance to talk with the owners. I think I may have just made two friends! And they may be able to help me make my Barbeque award winning! They could not have been nicer. I talked to them for a short while and had to run because I had left my tired wife and sleeping kids waiting in the car! But, I can’t wait to go back and talk with them and hear stories of past American Royals gone by… and to have some more of there food!

So, stop in at Ritter’s Barbeque and Catering in Raytown–you will be full and happy!

-Chop

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Barbeque Kansas City! Now on Twitter!

BarbequeKC Is my Twitter ID! I don’t know how I lucked out first with the website names www.barbequekansascity.com and www.barbecuekansascity.com and now with BarbequeKC as my Twitter ID–I guess it is just the right time in my life and time to take it as far as I can!

Hit the like button!

Follow me on Twitter!

And Eat Good Q!

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Cut, Sliced and Packaged!

image

I am already down to 10 pounds! I have yours here–just waiting for you!  Contact me if you want some of the best Corned Beef in the world!

-Chop

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Corned Beef: It’s what’s for dinner! Contact me if you want some!

So, I fired up the Brinkman off set smoker on Friday (yesterday) on “The Chop House Trailer” in the back yard. I cooked all day long.  The meat of the day was corned beef (yummy!). Corned beef to me brings me back to a half dozen years ago when I was first learning how to use the smoker.  My best friend, who had worked at Zarda’s BBQ for a few years, showed me how to do it. The first thing we cooked then was  corned beef. I didn’t know anything back then (and I still may not know much!) but I do make some good food!   (And this page made it to the first page of Google!)

I started by cleaning my entire cooking area the day before (The Chop House needed a bath!).  I also did a seasoning burn in the smoker with an oil wipe down.

Then I started a fire at 8am. I used my Weber charcoal chimney on my Weber Performer Grill. Since it has the propane starter on it, it makes starting the fire super easy–but you can use a few pages of news paper to get it fired up!

Next, after the coals were white on top, I poured them on top of some non-burning hunks of charcoal.

Then I prepped the meat.  Since it’s: “I like the taste of the corn beef the way it comes”–I just opened the package and put the spice pack on it and moved on to the next one. 9 packages later, I was ready.

I put the meat on the smoker starting at the far left, then to the right.  But since the fire box is wide open and hot, I only cover about 2/3’s of the cooking surface.  (Note: I can’t wait to finish my big smoker! 6,000 square inches!)  I did add the center rack and it worked out great for three of the briskets–they finished first…

The Start... 9 Corned Beefs with a little space to the far right.

I only opened the smoker to take this picture. Keep from peeking. Heat recovery is a time killer! This was about the half way point.


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Project: My “Chop House” BBQ Trailer!

So, for the last few years I have been cooking here and there for the guys and girls at work–50 or so hungry people, and for friends and family–a 100 or so more hungry people.  Then there was a rib-eye banquet…and so on. I needed a trailer rig on a SUPER tight budget!  This is what I came up with and since my nickname is Chop, my wife and I named it “The Chop House.”

I started with a trailer my Dad loaned me (but now it seems like I may be getting him a new one because it is not going to be easy getting this thing apart!).  

Any questions?  Leave me a comment! Take a look at the pictures below click on them to make them bigger!

I started with a Harbor Freight Trailer that Dad "loaned" me.

I built a top out of 2x3's and plastic roofing from Home Depot.

figuring out placement of the smoker and weber

added a folding counter top out of a $5 wire shelf and added folding roof wings!

Skirting around the outside

Roof wings down

Done!

Cooking out and about!


-Chop

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Review: Schloegel’s WoodYard Bar-B-Que

I have had some good Q in my day. But, this place was great! “Subtle” is a good way to say everything about it.

Here’s why we went to WoodYard Bar-B-Que. I needed wood and I live in Kansas City. I did a Google search and up pops WoodYard… I called some friends and they said I should go to WoodYard to buy smoker wood. Ok, since I am smoking 20 something pounds of Corned beef tomorrow–why not?

 So I loaded my wife and kids up and we headed out to the WoodYard. And we were hungry!  So, on the way out I remembered seeing WoodYard on “Diners, Drive-ins and Dives” so I told my wife and she agreed: Let’s Eat! Yes, that’s right, you can eat AND get smoker logs, big bags of chunks of Oak, Hickory, Apple, Pecan, Pear, Peach, and Cherry for smoking, as well as Oak and Piñon for your fireplace and chiminea AND: you can eat and eat–we did!

First off, it is a cool place with a few tables inside and a lot of tables outside! They know what they are doing, too.  I had a combo: a chicken leg, a pile of brisket, some sausage, and a pair of ribs, a big roll and a side of cheesy corn for just under $10. It was really good, lightly smoked and lightly seasoned with sauce on the side. It was just the fix we needed! My wife had a burnt end sandwich with potato salad and cheesy corn. I think she liked it because she told me about 20 times while she was eating it! I tried it– she was right it was really good…

If you are looking around for wood and some place to eat, stop by:  you will not be sorry!

WoodYard’s Website

Click the Picture to make them BIGGER.


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Kansas City Barbecue: The people who made it happen.

Henry Perry
Kansas City traces its barbecue history to Henry Perry, who operated out of a trolley barn at 19th and Highland in the legendary African-American neighborhood around 18th and Vine.

Perry served slow-cooked ribs on pages of newsprint for 25 cents a slab. Perry came from Shelby County, Tennessee near Memphis and began serving barbecue in 1908. The style of Kansas City and Memphis barbecue are very similar, although Kansas City tends to use more sauce and a wider variety of meats, including pork, beef, chicken, sausage, and turkey. Perry’s sauce had a somewhat harsh, peppery flavor.
Perry’s restaurant became a major cultural point during the heyday of Kansas City Jazz during the “wide-open” days of Tom Pendergast in the 1920s and 1930s.

Arthur Bryant
Working for Henry Perry was Charlie Bryant, who, in turn, brought his brother, Arthur Bryant, into the business. Charlie took over the Perry restaurant in 1940 after Perry died. Arthur then took over his brother’s business in 1946, and the restaurant was renamed Arthur Bryant’s.

Arthur Bryant’s, which eventually moved to 1727 Brooklyn in the same neighborhood, became a stomping ground for baseball fans and players in the 1950’s and 1960’s, because of its close proximity to Municipal Stadium, where the Athletics (or A’s) played their home games during that period.

In 1974, Kansas City native Calvin Trillin wrote an article in New Yorker Magazine proclaiming Bryant’s to be the best restaurant on the planet.
Despite new-found fame, Bryant did not change the restaurant’s very simple decor, which consisted of fluorescent lighting, formica tables, and five-gallon jars of sauce displayed in the windows, even as Presidents Harry Truman, Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan stopped by.

Bryant died of a heart attack, in a bed that he kept at the restaurant, shortly after Christmas of 1982. The restaurant is still open. The sauce and restaurant continue their success.

Republican Presidential nominee John McCain and his running mate, Sarah Palin, ate at Arthur Bryant’s in the days leading up to the 2008 Presidential Election.

Gates & Sons
In 1946 Arthur Pinkard, who was a cook for Perry, joined with George Gates to form Gates and Sons Bar-B-Q. The restaurant was situated initially in the same neighborhood.

Gates barbecue sauce does NOT contain molasses, and the ingredients, as listed on the bottle, are: “Tomatoes, vinegar, salt, sugar, celery, garlic, spices, and pepper. 1/10 of 1% potassium sorbate preservative added.” It is available in Original Classic, Mild, Sweet & Mild, and Extra Hot varieties.

Gates also expanded its footprint in a more conventional way, with restaurants all displaying certain trademarks—red-roofed buildings, a recognizable logo (a strutting man clad in tuxedo and top hat) and the customary “Hi, May I Help You?” greeting belted out by its employees as patrons enter.

Gates has opened restaurants throughout the Kansas City metropolitan area. The chain currently consists of 6 area Gates Bar-B-Q restaurants: 4 in Missouri, 2 in Kansas. Gates also has sold barbecue sandwiches at Kauffman Stadium during Kansas City Royals home games, and currently at Arrowhead Stadium during Kansas City Chiefs home games.

Fiorella’s Jack Stack Barbecue
Fiorella’s Jack Stack Barbecue was originally a part of the Fiorella family-owned chain of Smoke Stack Barbecue restaurants, which opened in its first location in 1957 on Prospect Avenue. One of these restaurants, Smoke Stack Barbecue of Martin City, was opened in 1974 by the eldest son Jack Fiorella and his wife Delores.

In the mid-1980s, Jack and Delores decided to expand their menu selections, adding non-traditional barbecue menu items like hickory-grilled steaks, lamb ribs, Crown Prime Beef Short Ribs, and fresh, hickory-grilled seafood, along with an extensive wine and bar selection. They also began offering a higher level of comfort and service than most people were accustomed to at a barbecue restaurant.

In the mid-1990s, Jack and Delores opened their second restaurant location in neighboring Overland Park, Kansas, and changed their restaurants’ name to Fiorella’s Jack Stack Barbecue to set themselves apart from the Smoke Stack chain. They also opened a full-service catering operation in Martin City and their third location in the historic Freight House building in the Crossroads Arts District. They began shipping their barbecue nationwide in 2000, and in October 2006 they opened a fourth location on The Country Club Plaza.

Fiorella’s Jack Stack Barbecue has been featured on The Food Network and The History Channel, and has been rated as among the best barbecue in the United States by several national organizations and magazines. Most notably, the Zagat Survey has named it the “#1 Barbecue House in the Country.”

KC Masterpiece
In 1977, Rich Davis capitalized on the reputation of Kansas City barbecue to form KC Masterpiece, which evolved from his “K.C. Soul Style Barbecue Sauce.” While much has been written about Davis and his now infamous sauce, KC Masterpiece is not representative of traditional Kansas City BBQ sauce. KC Masterpiece is sweeter and thicker than any of the traditional Kansas City sauces served in the region. Davis’ KC Masterpiece uses molasses to achieve the thick, sweet character, an ingredient not present in any traditional Kansas City sauces.

KC Masterpiece was sold to the Kingsford division of Clorox in 1986 and now claims to be the number one premium barbecue brand in the U.S. When Davis sold the rights to his sauce to Clorox, he announced plans to build a franchise of barbecue restaurants. The franchises were unsuccessful and are now all closed.

The “Bacon Explosion”
In 2008, two men from Kansas City, named Jason Day and Aaron Chronister, invented the “Bacon Explosion,” a dish the size of a football consisting of sausage wrapped in bacon with more bacon in the middle, then rubbed with barbecue seasonings and basted with barbecue sauce, before putting in a smoke pit or oven. The dish is notorious for being extremely high in fat and calories.

Kansas City Barbeque Society
The Kansas City Barbeque Society (KCBS) was founded in 1986. With over 13,000 members worldwide, it is the world’s largest organization of barbecue and grilling enthusiasts. KCBS is a nonprofit organization dedicated to “promoting barbecue as America’s cuisine and having fun while doing so.”

KCBS sanctions nearly 300 barbecue contests across the U.S. each year and offers assistance to civic and charitable organizations with producing these events. The KCBS has developed a set of rules and regulations that govern all official KCBS competitions.

KCBS offers educational programs, consultation services and civic organization presentations to help spread the gospel of barbecue. The mission of the Kansas City Barbeque Society is to celebrate, teach, preserve and promote barbecue as a culinary technique, sport and art form.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Without these people we would just be a dot on a map!

-Dan


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More Barbecue History and Regional Barbeque Styles.

This should cover the history portion of our class other than the next post that will cover the the men who made BBQ famous in Kansas City.

The Barbecue Region
The origins of American barbecue date back to colonial times, with the first recorded mention in 1610, and George Washington mentions attending a “barbicue” in Alexandria, VA in 1769. As the country expanded westwards along the Gulf of Mexico and north along the Mississippi River, barbecue went with it.

The core region for barbecue is the southeastern region of the United States, an area bordered on the west by Texas and Oklahoma, on the north by Missouri, Kentucky, and Virginia, on the south by the Gulf of Mexico, and on the east by the Atlantic Ocean. While barbecue is found outside of this region, the fourteen core barbecue states contain 70 of the top 100 barbecue restaurants, and most top barbecue restaurants outside the region have their roots there.

Barbecue in its current form grew up in the South, where both black and white cooks learned to slow roast tough cuts of meat over fire pits to make them tender. This slow cooking over smoke leaves a distinctive line of red just under the surface, where the myoglobin in the meat reacts with carbon monoxide from the smoke, and imparts the smoky taste essential to barbecue.

These humble beginnings are still reflected in the many barbecue restaurants that are operated out of “hole-in-the-wall” (or “dive”) locations; the rib joint is the purest expression of this. Many of these will have irregular hours, and remain open only until all of a day’s ribs are sold; they may shut down for a month at a time as the proprietor goes on vacation. Despite these unusual traits, rib joints will have a fiercely loyal clientele.

The first ingredient in the barbecue tradition was the meat. Pigs came to the Americas with the Spanish explorers, and quickly turned feral. This provided the most widely used protein used in most barbecue, pork ribs, as well as the pork shoulder for pulled pork. The techniques used in barbecue are hot smoking and smoke cooking. Hot smoking is where the meat is cooked with a wood fire, over indirect heat, at temperatures between 120 and 180 F (49 and 82 C), and smoke cooking is cooking over indirect fire at higher temperatures. Unlike cold smoking, which preserves meat and takes days of exposure to the smoke, hot smoking and smoke cooking are cooking processes. While much faster than cold smoking, the cooking process still takes hours, as many as 18. The long, slow cooking process leaves the meat tender and juicy.

The next ingredient in barbecue is the wood. Since the wood smoke flavors the food, not just any wood will do; different woods impart different flavors, so availability of various woods for smoking influences the taste of the barbecue in different regions.

* Hard woods such as hickory, mesquite, pecan and the different varieties of oak impart a strong smoke flavor.
* Maple, alder, and fruit woods such as apple, pear, and cherry impart a milder, sweeter taste.

Stronger flavored woods are used for pork and beef, while the lighter flavored woods are used for fish and poultry. More exotic smoke generating ingredients can be found in some recipes; grapevine adds a sweet flavor, and sassafras, a major flavor in root beer adds its distinctive taste to the smoke.[6][7][8]

The last, and in many cases optional, ingredient is the barbecue sauce. There are no constants, with sauces running the gamut from clear, peppered vinegars to thick, sweet, tomato and molasses sauces, from mild to painfully spicy. The sauce may be used as a marinade before cooking, applied during cooking, after cooking, or used as a table sauce. An alternate form of barbecue sauce is the dry rub, a mixture of salt and spices applied to the meat before cooking.

Main regional styles

Regional variations of barbecue
While the wide variety of barbecue styles makes it difficult to break barbecue styles down into regions, there are four major styles commonly referenced (though many sources list more). The four major styles are Memphis and Carolina, which rely on pork and represent the oldest styles, and Kansas City and Texas, which utilize beef as well as pork, and represent the later evolution of the original deep south barbecue. Pork is the most common protein used, followed by beef and veal, often with chicken or turkey in addition. Lamb and mutton are found in some areas, such as Owensboro, Kentucky, and some regions will add other meats.

Memphis
Memphis barbecue is primarily ribs, which come “wet” and “dry”. Wet ribs are brushed with sauce before and after cooking, and dry ribs are seasoned with a dry rub. Pulled pork, from the shoulder, is also a popular item, which is served smothered in a hot, sweet, tomato based sauce.

Carolinas
Carolina barbecue is usually pork, served pulled, shredded, or chopped, but sometimes sliced. It may also be rubbed with a spice mixture before smoking and mopped with a spice and vinegar liquid during smoking.

Two styles predominate in different parts of North Carolina. Eastern North Carolina barbecue is made by the use of the “whole hog”, where the entire pig is barbecued and the meat from all parts of the pig are chopped and mixed together. Eastern North Carolina barbecue also uses a thin sauce made of spices and vinegar. Western North Carolina barbecue is made from only the pork shoulder, which is mainly dark meat, and uses a thicker sweetened tomato-based sauce. Western North Carolina barbecue is also known as Lexington barbecue, after the town of Lexington, North Carolina, home to many barbecue restaurants and a large barbecue festival, the Lexington Barbecue Festival.

South Carolina
South Carolina has three regional styles. In western parts of the state, along the Savannah River, a peppery tomato or ketchup-based sauce is common. In the central part of the state (the Midlands), barbecue is characterized by the use of a yellow “Carolina Gold” sauce, made from a mixture of yellow mustard, vinegar, brown sugar and other spices.[2] In the coastal “Pee Dee” region, they use the whole hog, and use a spicy, watery, vinegar-and-pepper sauce. In Piedmont area of the state shoulders, hams, or Boston butts are used.

Kansas City style barbecue
Kansas City has a wide variety in proteins, but the signature ingredient is the sauce. The meat is smoked with a dry rub, and the sauce served as a table sauce. Kansas City style sauce is thick and sweet (with significant exceptions such as Arthur Bryant’s, which is significantly less sweet than others in the region, and Gates, notably spicier than other KC-style sauces) based on tomatoes and molasses. This is perhaps the most widespread of sauces, with the Kansas City recipe K. C. Masterpiece being a top-selling brand.

Texas
There are four generally recognized regional styles of barbecue in Texas, East Texas style, which is essentially Southern barbecue and is also found in many urban areas, Central Texas “meat market style” which originated in the butcher shops of German and Czech immigrants to the region, West Texas “cowboy style” which involves direct cooking over mesquite and uses goat and mutton as well as beef, and South Texas barbacoa, in which the head of a cow is cooked (originally underground).

There are many variations all over the world. I could keep boring you with all this, but I think I will get to cooking!
-Dan
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


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The Smoke Ring!!

Proud new member of The Smoke Ring! What is it? The Smoke Ring is a linking of BBQ Websites and I am now a part of it! Click next to keep on surfing everything Barbecue! You will find the links on the bottom of the page.

From their site:
Everybody loves Barbecue!

The Smoke Ring is the place to find everything you need to know about barbecue, grilling and smoking. Whether you are looking for recipes, grills, smokers, sauces, rubs, or want to learn how to cook barbecue–The Smoke Ring, or one of our over 1,000 member sites, has what you need.

All you need to know about barbecue

Thank you Smoke Ring!

-Dan

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What is Kansas City’s Style Barbecue?

Well, it’s great! Duh… But here is some detail and history. I think we need to know the roots of something so we can enjoy it even more!

Kansas City barbecue refers to the specific inner city style of slow smoked meat that evolved from the pit of Henry Perry in the early 1900’s in Kansas City, Missouri. Kansas City barbecue is slow smoked over a variety of woods and then covered with a thick tomato and molasses based sauce.

The Kansas City Metropolitan Area is renowned for barbecue. Kansas City, Missouri has more than 100 barbecue restaurants and is often considered to be the “world’s barbecue capital.” There are large, well attended barbecue cooking contests, the two most notable being in nearby Lenexa, Kansas and at the American Royal.

Kansas City barbecue is characterized by its use of different types of meat (including pulled pork, pork ribs, burnt ends, smoked sausage, beef brisket, beef ribs, smoked/grilled chicken, smoked turkey, and sometimes fish). This variety of meat can be attributed to Kansas City’s location along the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway (Santa Fe, BNSF) and the Union Pacific. Due to Kansas City’s proximity to the railroads, there were 7 packing houses located in Kansas City which made it a central location in the US for the meat. Hickory was readily available in the region and continues to be the primary wood associated with smoking meat in Kansas City.

Kansas City Barbeque’s, similar to those found in St. Louis, use BBQ sauce liberally. The sauces found in the region are tomato based with sweet, spicy and tangy flavor profiles. A majority of restaurants offer several sauce varieties but the staple sauce tends to be both spicy and sweet. Ribs are mostly pork, but also come in beef varieties and can come in a number of different cuts. Burnt ends, the flavorful pieces of meat cut from the ends of a smoked beef or pork brisket, are a popular dish in many Kansas City area barbecue restaurants. Kansas City barbecue is also known for its many side dishes, including a unique style of baked beans, French fries, cole slaw, and other soul food staples.

In 2000, Kansas City restaurant chain Fiorella’s Jack Stack Barbecue began shipping their barbecue nationwide. Efforts by Arthur Bryant’s and Gates and Sons Bar-B-Q to export Kansas City barbecue beyond the metro area have not been as commercially successful, although the two do market their sauces can be found in most Kansas and Missouri grocery stores and the Kansas City International Airport.

-Dan
Thank you to Wikipedia.org for the info!

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