I. Love. Barbeque.

I have many culinary loves. You know this.

I love all things fresh, local, cheesy, and beefy.

Not necessarily all in one dish, or even in one meal. You get the idea.

One culinary delight that really lights my fire is barbeque.

To me barbeque is anything with a barbeque rub or sauce, or smoked or grilled meats and veggies. Really, the options for great barbecue are endless when you have loose criteria.

While in Arkansas visiting John, of course I ate some local barbeque.
(My go-to order at a new barbecue joint is the beef brisket. Hands down.)

While talking with John (between mouthfuls of delectable, tender, juicy beef) we came to to the conclusion that we need more authentic barbecue in Eastern Iowa. It's just a shame to have to only savor good smoked meats and mouth-watering sauces when visiting the South.

If money were no option and we had a magic wand to make it so, we would totally open up a mom-and-pop barbecue joint in Cedar Rapids or Marion. Here's how it would go:


We would emphasize the Three S's (something we came up with during lunch), which is like a mantra or mission statement of sorts:

  1. Sauce
  2. Sides
  3. Smoker

I would run the smoker. Period. We'd purchase and offer locally and farmer raised meats only - beef and pork from my parents, chicken from my aunt, perhaps. I would specialize in wet barbecuing, but would offer perhaps a dry rubbed rack of ribs. Three of my best dishes would be beef brisket (obviously), pulled pork (my husband's favorite) and ribs (a love of my entire family). Preferrably the smoker would be outside the building, and better yet: it would be on a trailer to provide mobility. It wouldn't necessarily be a food truck, but just mobile.

I would hire my mom to make all of the sides, because that woman can cook! The sides would include all of my mom's recipes: cole slaw, potato salad, corn bread and baked beans. In the summer we would offer corn on the cob from my parents, and in the winter we would offer corn casserole with frozen sweet corn, also purchased from my parents. I would also encourage mom to try out several of her cold pasta salads. OF course, each of her sides would be homemade daily and available for purchase on their own.

Lastly, the sauce would be something we've tested and tweaked for a long while. It would not be a a vinegar-based sauce, and would be made from a combination of fresh tomatoes and ketchup. I've posted a few of my barbecue sauce recipes before, you should check them out for yourself and let me know what you think. I would have a tangy "standard" recipe, as well as a burn-your-mouth hot barbecue sauce, and a sweet/brown sugar/honey recipe. That's it.


I love "pipe dreamin'".

It's a trait I get from my father. My sister, Stephanie, has the same tendency.

I think dreaming in detail like this is a stress-reliever. In my heart I know it is likely these things will never come true, either due to lack of money, resources, passion or talent. Either way, it feels amazing to dream, doesn't it?

And it really comes back to the whole purpose of this post: Eastern Iowa needs a few barbecue joints.

Over and out.


PS - I am linking up on a few different blogs. Please check them out!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for sharing with the Clever Chicks Blog Hop this week; I hope you’ll join us again!

    Kathy Shea Mormino

    The Chicken Chick



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