Eric Mesa's Reviews > Legends of Texas Barbecue Cookbook: Recipes and Recollections from the Pit Bosses

Legends of Texas Barbecue Cookbook by Robb Walsh
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really liked it
bookshelves: cookbooks-and-food

I have yet to make any of the recipes in this book, although I have added many to my internal wiki where I keep track of recipes I'd like to make and notes on recipes I have made. What makes this book special and warranted the 4 star rating is that it's a book documenting the past and present of Texas Barbecue. So while my treasured Meathead BBQ book is about the science of cooking, this one doesn't really guide you to BBQ; it assumes anyone who buys this book is already enough of a BBQ nerd.

It was fascinating to read about all the different cultures that came together to make the types of BBQ you can find in Texas: Mexicans, Germans, Southerners and their slaves, and the cattlemen of the 1870s. It's also slightly sad to read about all these strains because many of them have disappeared due to various forces like tourists expecting southern style BBQ or the health department regulating away open pit BBQs. And so this book serves as a time capsule and a documentation of the way things have been and currently are in case anyone wants to resurrect a particular style in the future. As someone who's both a history and a food nerd, it was cool to see how each style of BBQ came from certain needs and constraints. Either the food that was available to a class of people or the food they brought from the home country. Or, in the case of the meat markets, feeding migrant farm workers cheaply.

I'd recommend to any meat-eating Texan, any BBQ geek/nerd, and anyone who likes to know the history of the food they're cooking. I may add a post script after I make some recipes on the recipes themselves. They definitely are less hand-hold-y than lots of other cookbooks I've been reading recently.
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Reading Progress

September 3, 2018 – Started Reading
September 3, 2018 – Shelved
September 3, 2018 – Shelved as: cookbooks-and-food
September 3, 2018 –
16.0% "A neat summary of the history of Texas BBQ"
September 8, 2018 –
25.0% "Done with the history, onto some pit master recipes"
November 8, 2018 –
28.0% "Working through this book again"
November 18, 2018 –
38.0% "Great chapter on sauces, including sauces from two of the First Ladies from Texas. Now onto German meet markets"
November 18, 2018 –
45.0% "From the German roots (which was neat reading about how the immigrants were German radicals) to the contributions of the Slaves brought to Texas"
November 21, 2018 –
71.0% "Onto Mexican contributions to Texas BBQ"
November 24, 2018 –
77.0% "Done with barbacoa, now time for Smoking Beef"
November 27, 2018 – Finished Reading

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