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Ugly Brothers Barbeque
Bovine Recipes


Source: National Cattlemen's Beef Association
 Retail Beef Cuts
 Retail Veal Cuts

Pepper Crusted Steak
Adapted from Weber's "Art of the Grill"

A classic... you'll wish you had grilled more!!

 Amount  Ingredient  Preparation Method
 4 Steaks, such as Rib Eye or New York   cut thick
 2 TBS black peppercorns   whole
  2 TBS   coffee beans   whole, dark roast
  1-1/2 TBS   kosher salt  
   olive oil  

Black peppercorns are much more flavorful when they are freshly cracked. DO NOT EVEN THINK of using pre-ground pepper, the flavor and the texture will ruin your steaks and leave you cursing up a storm!

Coarsely crack the black peppercorns with a mortar and pestle then grind in coffee beans. If you use a spice mill do not grind too fine, remember, part of the goodness of this is the crusty texture. Add kosher salt to the mixture and then generously press into both sides of the steaks. Add a few drops of olive oil to each side of the steaks, just enough to evenly coat. Allow to stand for about an hour or so.

Grill the steaks over direct high heat to sear the outsides leaving the inside medium rare. Once off the grill allow steaks to stand for about 5 minutes before gorging.

tough love.

"Brisket is a journey. You will know when you are there...." 12th Cent. anon.


Brisket is a point of pride with all serious BBQ'ers. This is probably because it is the toughest cut of meat the cow has to offer. If it's not done right you might as well toss a leather shoe sole into the microwave and cover it with gobs of sauce. (20 minutes on high should be about right). When it's done properly, the brisket is a sensuous, tempting cut that can hold its shape during slicing but is still fork tender and always tastes like more.

We won't go into secret rubs, sauces or the likes. Here we will discuss the basic brisketing techniques employed by the Ugly Brothers in the hopes of helping you get a leg up on your journey.

The Ugly Brothers smoke their brisket exclusively in the Big Green Egg. We do this because the heavy ceramic insulation retains moisture that would otherwise evaporate from the most popular steel walled smokers. Most often we use a water pan, but not always...... we often marinate and inject the meat.... depends on the mood. We always give it a rub, our current off the shelf favorite being John Henry's Pecan Rub.


Basic Technique
The basic philosophy is to slowly smoke the meat at lower temperatures to allow the smoke flavor to penetrate then finish it off by rapidly raising the internal temperature, thus dissolving the connective tissues and rendering out large amounts fat.

When the meat is prepared to our feelings du jour we will get the fire going in the BGE and stabilize the temperature at around 190-210°F. (See Fire Building Techniques for the BGE)

We most often use BGE hardwood charcoal in combination with small amounts of hickory or pecan wood chips.

If we are using a water pan for moisture or pizza stone to prevent too much direct heat to the bottom of the brisket than we will place the meat fat side up to allow juices to flow over and into the meat as it cooks.

If we are placing the brisket on the grill without any sort of heat deflector then we will do so fat side down to add a layer of protection to the meat.

The brisket is allowed to slow cook until it reaches an internal temperature of about 175-180°F. At that point we open the vents to allow the BGE temperature to rapidly rise to about 375°F. And allow the meat to cook further until it reaches an internal temperature of about 205°F.


Finishing & Serving

  • Sauce is applied only during the last 15 or so minutes of cooking.
  • Allow the meat to stand for 15-20 minutes before carving.
  • Your finished brisket should be firm enough to carve in 1/4 inch slices without falling apart and tender enough that a light tug at the slice will easily pull it apart. A well-smoked brisket will reveal a pink "smoke ring", revealing how far the smoke has penetrated the meat.
  • To serve lightly brush the slices with sauce. You do not want your brisket to swim in sauce since this will overpower the flavors of the meat and smoke.

Ugly Tri-Tip
An Ugly Brothers recipe, ideal for the Big Green Egg.
Tri-Tip is a very popular cut in Southern California, often being called "Santa Maria Style" barbeque where it has been perfected. There and in Casmalia, San Luis Obsipo and Santa Barbara it's a common site on weekends to see large open pits grilling tri-tips over red oak fires. The tri-tip is a boneless roast cut from the bottom sirloin and receives it's name from its triangular shape. We Ugly's prefer to grill this cut in the Big Green Egg using a combination of hardwood lump charcoal and oak chunks to medium rare, then, give it a light coat of our own Raspberry/Chipotle sauce.

 Amount  Ingredient  Preparation Method
 3 lbs Tri-Tip  
 3 cloves  garlic   minced
  Johnny D's Angus Stock marinate
     McCormack's Montreal Steak Seasoning
    Ugly Brothers Raspberry/Chipotle BBQ Sauce  

We start by taking a beautiful cut of tri-tip and marinating it in Johnny D's and garlic overnight, As often happens, things come up and it often marinates for a few days. The tri-tip is removed from the refrigerator and the marinate at least an hour before going on the grill to allow it warm up some. It is then rubbed with a generous coating of McCormack's Montreal Steak seasoning in preparation for the grill.

The Big Green Egg is loaded with hardwood charcoal and lit from the bottom (see BGE fire starting techniques) and allowed to reach a temperature of 675-700° F. Just as the tri-tip is place on the grill a few chunks of water soaked oak are place on the coals. The meat is grilled over direct heat with the lid down, top and bottom vents open. If it seems the flames are too high the top vent is damped down to calm the flames. The meat is grilled to an internal temperature of 140° F (approx 20 minutes) rendering it crispy on the outside and medium-rare in the center. Use leftover marinate to baste occasionally while grilling. Once removed from the grill it is wrapped in foil and allowed to stand for about 10 minutes before being sliced and LIGHTLY brushed with sauce. Be careful not to sauce too heavily or the tri-tip will taste like BBQ sauce and the beautiful natural flavor of the tri-tip will be lost!

Rib Eye Roast
An Ugly Brothers Recipe ideal for the Big Green Egg

 Amount  Ingredient  Preparation Method
 5 lbs Rib Eye Roast   bone in
 10 cloves  garlic   whole, peeled
    kosher salt  
    black pepper  fresh ground
    garlic powder  
  1/4 cup red wine  
   olive oil  

The day before pierce the meat and insert whole cloves of garlic throughout the roast. Inject the meat with red wine and generously rub in Kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper and garlic powder, refrigerate over night.

Allow roast to sit at room temperature for at least one hour. In our preferred method, pre-heat oven to 500° F, pre-heat smoker to 300° F. Put roast on a wire roasting rack in an enameled or Pyrex dish to keep the meat from wallowing in the drippings. Spread a thin layer of olive oil over the roast then place in 500° F oven for 15 - 20 minutes then immediately transfer to the 300° F smoker. Lightly smoke with oak or other hardwood charcoal until internal temperature is reached for desired doneness. See Roast Doneness Chart (below). The Ugly Brothers will remove the meat from the smoker when the thickest part of the meat reaches an internal temperature of 130-135° F. and allow the meat to rest approximately 20 minutes before serving. Cooking time approximately 3 hours.


  • Omitting the 500° F searing works but will not give the ends that wonderful crunch.
  • You can use your favorite steak seasoning instead. The Ugly Brothers often use Tony Chachere's Creole Seasoning.
  • DON'T FREAK OUT. If you are monitoring the internal temperature you will notice that it seems to stay very low for a long time. Once it hits an internal temperature of about 90° F the temperature will rise more rapidly.
  • Mesquite tends to give a very strong flavor, for that reason the Ugly Brothers prefer oak.
  • The drippings can be utilized for an excellent Yorkshire Pudding! (see below)
  • By deglazing the drip pan you can produce a wonderful gravy and clean the pan at the same time! (see below)

Aunt Lil's Yorkshire Pudding
A traditional family recipe from Chris Peckham

Brother Chris Peckham has given the Ugly Brothers his Aunt Lil's award winning Yorkshire Pudding recipe as passed down through his family. This recipe, which won a London Times competition in 1938, is the ideal accompaniment to a good roast and an excellent way to utilize the flavorful drippings which carry some of the seasonings.

 Amount  Ingredient  Preparation Method
  roast drippings  
 1 cup  flour  
  2 eggs    
  1/2 cup milk
  1/2 cup water  
  goodly pinch salt  

Mix all ingredients except drippings and allow to stand for at least a half hour.
Pre-heat oven to 450° F .
Put drippings in a baking pan and heat in a 450° F stove until splattering.
Pour batter onto the hot drippings and cook until well risen and golden brown (approx.. 15 minutes).

Ugly notes / variations:

  • Though not specified by Aunt Lil, we find that 1/4 to 1/3 cup drippings work best.
  • If we only have low-fat milk then we double the milk and omit the water.
  • You can make individual Yorkshire Puddings by using a muffin pan. Place 2 TBS drippings in the bottom of each muffin segment and pour batter half way to the top of each.
  • Keep it hot! At lower temperatures the pudding will not rise and you will end up with a flat greasy mess.

Deglazing Sauce
A lost art

Deglazing the pan used to be the most popular way to make a gravy sauce and, it has the added benefit of helping to clean the pan. Now this seems to have become a lost art as people seem to prefer a packet gravy mix and elbow grease to tradition.

After the meat and measure of drippings have been removed from the drip pan, place the pan over a medium high flame and add about 1/4 cup wine and 1/4 cup vegetable stock or water. As this comes to a boil use a spoon to scrape the up the browned bits stuck to the pan, they will break up and incorporate into the sauce as it reduces. TASTE the sauce. Often the smoke flavor can be over powering. If this is the case add more stock or water and bring back to a boil. You may now want to adjust the consistency by adding Bisto, Wondra or some other gravy thickener. You can't go wrong by adding 1 clove of garlic and some mushroom slices to this early on.

Brined Brisket
Based on the recipe "Pastrami" of Emeril Lagasse

This recipe, located on our Cures & Brines page, calls for brining a brisket with a combination of kosher salt, brown sugar, peppercorns and juniper berries.

Roast Beef Doneness Chart
 Medium Rare  135° F  145° F
 Medium  150° F  160° F
 Well  160° F  170° F


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