Recipes for smokers: bacon, brisket, ABTs

  • June 13, 2013 - 8:51 AM


Makes 24.

Note: Jess Ford likes to keep the seeds and cores in a couple of peppers, warning guests that the platter holds a few anonymous hotties. “At Smokapalooza, four people told me they got the hot ones. Funny thing is, I only put two in there!” Here’s a forum:

• 12 large jalapeños

• 6 oz. cream cheese

1 1/2 c. shredded cheese of your choice

1 1/2 c. cooked seasoned meat, poultry or seafood of your choice

Salt, pepper and any other spices to taste, depending on your filling choice

12 slices of thin-sliced bacon, cut in half (to make 24 slices)


Slice peppers in half lengthwise and remove core and seeds. Wearing protective gloves is a good idea.

Mix together cream cheese, cheese, meat and seasonings, then divide evenly among jalapeño halves and wrap each one with a piece of uncooked thin-sliced bacon. Use a toothpick to close if you need to, but thin bacon holds together well. These can be prepared 24 hours in advance of smoking.

Place in a smoker set at 225 degrees for 2 to 3 hours, or until the bacon is browned.

Nutrition information per jalapeño:

Calories 110 Fat 8 g Sodium 213 mg

Carbohydrates 2 g Saturated fat 4 g Calcium 53 mg

Protein 6 g Cholesterol 28 mg Dietary fiber 1 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 high-fat meat.


Makes 5 pounds.

Note: Joe Pupel starts this process a week prior to the day he intends to smoke the bacon.

5 lb. pork belly, boneless, skin removed

5 tbsp. Morton Tender Quick curing salt, divided

• 1/2 c. black pepper, divided

• 1/4 c. bay leaves, ground, divided

• 3 c. brown sugar, divided

• 2 c. kosher salt, divided

• 1 large Honeycrisp apple

• 1 1/2 c. pure maple syrup


One week before you intend to cook, place the pork belly meat side down and sprinkle with half of the curing salt. Using protective gloves, massage the salt into the pork belly. Sprinkle a thin layer of half of the black pepper and half of the bay leaves over the belly, followed by half of the brown sugar and half of the kosher salt. Massage seasonings into the meat until packed on well.

Flip belly and repeat the process on the other side with the remaining half of the seasonings. Wrap well in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 5 days.

Prepare the marinade by puréeing the apple and maple syrup in a blender, then simmer over low heat for 90 minutes. Rinse the pork belly clean of all seasonings, then add the pork belly to the marinade in a large plastic bag and return to refrigerator for 2 days.

Rinse pork thoroughly and smoke over a low heat (160 to 200 degrees) for 2 to 5 hours, until the bacon is fork tender. Slice, fry and serve.

Nutrition information per 1 ounce:

Calories 39 Fat 2 g Sodium 315 mg

Carbohydrates 2 g Saturated fat 1 g Calcium 6 mg

Protein 2 g Cholesterol 10 mg Dietary fiber 0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: ½ fat.


Makes 8 to 10 lb. brisket.

Note: From “Backyard BBQ — The Art of Smokology,” by Richard McPeake. He suggests using pecan and cherry wood in the smoker.

1 (8 to 10 lb.) brisket flat, trimmed slightly

2 c. “Hell” Fire Mop (recipe follows)

4 tbsp. “Rub Me Tender” Rub (recipe follows)


Trim the brisket of any excess fat, down to about 1/4-inch thickness; the fat keeps the brisket moist while cooking. Place in a large zip-top plastic bag and pour in 1 cup of the mop mixture. (Refrigerate remaining mop sauce.) Marinate brisket in the refrigerator for at least 12 hours. Drain and pat dry, then sprinkle each side of the brisket with the rub mixture.

Place the brisket on a platter and keep at room temperature while your smoker comes up to temperature. Take remaining mop sauce out of the refrigerator.

Bring the smoker to about 300 degrees and place the brisket in the middle of the rack. Adjust heat to 225 degrees and smoke at the rate of 1 hour for every pound.

After the first two or three hours, when a “bark” has formed, start mopping the brisket with remaining mop sauce every 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until sauce is gone or brisket is done. Cook until meat is tender, with an internal temperature of 195 degrees.

Nutrition information per 3 ounces:

Calories 195 Fat 8 g Sodium 360 mg

Carbohydrates 3 g Saturated fat 3 g Calcium 11 mg

Protein 27 g Cholesterol 79 mg Dietary fiber 0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 4 lean meat.


Makes about 5 ¼ cups.

Note: You can vary the heat of the mop by adjusting the amount of Asian chile paste.

• 1 1/2 c. rice wine vinegar

• 1 c. beef broth, canned

• 1/2 c. Asian chile paste

• 1/2 c. superfine sugar

• 1/2 c. soy sauce

• 1/4 c. molasses

• 1/4 c. Worcestershire sauce

• 4 tbsp. yellow mustard

1 1/2 tbsp. Rub Me Tender rub (recipe follows)

• 1/4 c. olive oil


In a stainless steel bowl, combine the vinegar, beef broth, chile paste, sugar, soy sauce, molasses, Worcestershire sauce, yellow mustard and Rub Me Tender rub; blend well. Whisk in olive oil. This may be kept at room temperature.


Makes 3 ½ cups.

This recipe makes more than you’ll need for the brisket, but keeps well.

• 1 c. turbinado sugar

• 1/2 c. kosher salt

• 1/4 c. garlic salt

• 1/4 c. seasoning salt

• 1/4 c. granulated onion

• 1/4 c. chile powder

• 1/4 c. brown sugar

• 1/4 c. paprika

• 1/4 c. black pepper

• 2 tbsp. lemon pepper

• 2 tbsp. cayenne pepper


Combine all ingredients, mixing well. Store in a tightly covered container.

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