Throw that Fourth of July Barbecue

           For a woman who doesn’t own so much as a table top hibachi, I have to admit I love barbecued food. Put a plate of tender, saucy barbecued spare ribs in front of me, and I can guarantee they won’t last long.

      We Americans love our barbecues. W
ith great pride barbecue cooks will likely tell you their way is best, whether they’re from Memphis, Tennessee or Seattle Washington or any point in between. We’re  a nation of immigrants too, so let’s thank  Asian, Middle-eastern, Mexican and Caribbean immigrants, just to name a few notable examples, for adding the delicious flavors of their cooking to American barbecue cooking lore. 
 
          What we barbecue is as varied as how we cook it from the spare ribs of the South, to Texas beef brisket to plank-grilled fish in Seattle. Almost anything can be cooked on the barbecue as long as its big enough not to fall into the fire. The only  downside to this embarrassment of riches is that the sheer number of choices can bewilder even experienced grill masters, let alone the novice barbecue host. Here are a few barbecue cook books to help you get back on track. 
Barbecue Nation: 350 Hot-off-the-grill, Tried-and-true Recipes From America's Backyard by Fred Thompson 641.5784 THOMPSO Barbecue Nation covers the vast range of regional American barbecue cooking.  He  includes the influence of Asian and Caribbean cuisines as well. All recipes are suitable for home cooks.
 
Plank Grilling: 75 Recipes for Infusing Food with Flavor Using Wood Planks by Dina Guillen 641.76 GUILLEN Plank grilling is a  centuries-old native American method of cooking fish that is gaining popularity nationwide. But this book has a wide variety of recipes for cooking both meats and vegetables on the grill.
 Where There’s Smoke: Simple, Sustainable, Delicious Grilling by Barton Seaver  641.76 SEAVER Seaver emphasizes sustainable, healthy and delicious barbecue cooking for cooks and eaters with a conscience.  The recipes are as much about cooking produce as  about meats. He also gives practical advice on how to get your cooking fire started.
 The Gardener & the Grill: The Bounty of the Garden Meets the Sizzle of the Grill by Karen Adler 641.76 ADLER A great grilling cookbook for gardeners about  feeding both vegetarians and omnivores from your backyard grill.  If you’re not a gardener, it’s still a great way to make tasty grilled entrees for your vegetarian guests.
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