What is BBQ? The Top 4 Definitions of “BBQ”- Part 2

By Chef Mick Brown

Courtesy of http://www.BBQCateringConfidential.com (via http://www.BBQRESCUES.com)

This was originally written in 2014 for my big “BBQ Made Easy” Cookbook. Much has happened since then. Hopefully, it will help put ‘All Things BBQ” into better perspective for you. Since my Food Network appearance, and with the growing international popularity of BBQ RESCUES!, this is the perfect time for an Update. And Yes, that Cookbook Project is officially back on track. Stay Tuned…


Upscale BBQ Pork Roast I had at La Petite Cour restaurant in Paris, France.

What is BBQ?

Have you ever considered where the phrase “BBQ” comes from? When you think about it, this could one of the World’s Greatest Mysteries. How did the word “BBQ” spread across the planet? Could it be that- among international languages- it is easier to say “BBQ” to describe tasty food? The all-inclusive term is used regionally around the United States, and in countries all over the world. I could write volumes to describe the million different styles of Grilling and Smoking Food. However, the most common ways food considered BBQ is prepared around the world can be put into 4 Simple Categories.

#bbqgrill #puertvallartamexico

Checking out a sidewalk Mixed Grill at a BBQ Restaurant in  Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

 The Top 4 Ways the Word “BBQ” is Used:

1. Seasoned Foods– Many of these come nowhere near a Grill, but are seasoned with Dry Rub mixtures that possess familiar sweet and smoky flavors; i.e. BBQ Potato Chips, Pork Rinds, Sunflower Seeds, etc…


BBQ Seasoned Sweet Potato and Veggie Chips.

2. BBQ Sauces– They come in a wide variety of flavors and colors all over the world. Most are commonly used to coat Grilled or Smoked foods. Many are also added to Broiled, Baked, Slow Cooked and Fried Dishes; or as Condiments (for French Fries, Baked BBQ Chicken. Fried BBQ Chicken Wings, Slow Cooker BBQ Pulled Pork, etc…)


Loved the Texas style Homemade BBQ Sauces at Bodean’s BBQ in London.

3. Grilled Foods– There are a vast array of cooking styles and techniques that people consider Grilling. From using a Griddle, to a Grill Pan, charring food in a Skillet or Wok, Stovetop and Countertop Grilling Devices. Of course, there is plenty of Outdoor Grilling with Open Flame, on a Grill or in a Pit.

#MoroccanGrilledChicken #MomosLondon

Moroccan style Grilled Chicken with Couscous and all the Trimmings we had at Momo’s in London.

4. Smoked Foods– For some people, food isn’t BBQ unless it has been infused with some form of smoke flavor. This can be done with Liquid Smoke, Wood Chips, Wood Chunks or cooked in a Wood Burning Oven, Terrine or Pit.


Smoked Ribs are very popular at The Joint restaurant in New Orleans.

Of course, there are many exceptions. For some reason, when it comes to Vegetable and Seafood dishes, people tend to refer to them as “Grilled” or “Smoked”, as opposed to BBQ. This is true even when they are cooked using the same techniques as the Meats. The popular dish BBQ Shrimp in New Orleans is sautéed in a skillet and served with a pan BBQ Sauce. A big food chain in Korea is called BBQ Chicken. For them, the term “BBQ” stands for “Best of the Best Quality. While Grilled Chicken is on their Menu, the chain is best known for Fried Chicken. Go Figure…

I probably end up eating something from each of the 4 Categories of BBQ at least every week. Sometimes I get the “Quadruple BBQ Crown” all in one day. Feel free to share your Thoughts or Experiences with foods from The List. We’d be especially interested in seeing your BBQ Photos from around the world.

Until next time, Eat and Be Well.


Mick Brown is a Food Blogger/Purveyor based in Los Angeles, with over 30 years BBQ and Grilling experience. Aside from Caterer and Private Grilling Instructor, his passions are creating Easy Grilling Recipes and searching for the World’s Best Flavors. General Manager of Tastee BQ Grilling Co. and the new California Gold BBQ Rubs. In May of 2015, he won Grill Master Champion on Food Network’s Cutthroat Kitchen on special BBQ episode “Grill or Be Grilled” (Season 8, Episode 3). He also recently appeared on Bravo TV, catering for the Cast of Vanderpump Rules (Season Finale). He is also author of web blogs  The Adventures of Tastee BQ and  BBQ Catering Confidential. His newest project BBQ RESCUES!, includes a Blog Talk Radio Show, Youtube TV Channel and Podcasts on iTunes. Email- Mick@TasteeBQ.com

All Natural/ Organic BBQ Grilling Class Comes to Los Angeles

#bbqchicken #grilledvegetables

BBQ Chicken with Grilled Seasonal Fruits and Vegetables.

By Mick Brown

Could this be a first for The City of Angels? The first ever all-natural, organic group BBQ gathering since the Paleo Age? Maybe not, but there will be fun to be had, Grilling to learn and delicious Food for the tasting. A few slots are still available for my first-ever Grilling Workshop at The King’s Roost, in Silver Lake. Following years of doing mostly Private Lessons and occasional Group/Event Demos, a class is finally being offered to the public. The King’s Roost is known as L.A.’s “Urban Homesteading DIY Center” so this Workshop with focus on Organic and All Natural BBQ Techniques and Recipes.

#ChefMickBrown #bbqcatering #cateringlosangeles

Grilling Veggies while catering Corporate Picnic in Griffith Park.

After winning Grill Master on Cutthroat Kitchen (Food Network) things have started to slowly pick up for me. You may have heard that we catered at the former Beatles’ Mansion last Summer, as well as several well-attended Private Events. Then last month, we were featured on Bravo TV, on the Season Finale of Vanderpump Rules. We catered the Engagement Party at the famous estate (Villa Rosa) of Beverly Hills Housewife Lisa Vanderpump to celebrate the long anticipated engagement of Katie and Tom.

#tasteebqgrillingco #bbqcatering #losangeles

Online Still from Vanderpump Rules. Smoky Caprese Salad Skewers were a prelude to BBQ Buffet.

I am also getting on track with my new project BBQ RESCUES! It has gained thousands of followers on Facebook and views on the Youtube BBQ RESCUES! TV Channel. There are also a few podcasts available on Apple iTunes and at the BBQ RESCUES! Blog Talk Radio website. The purpose is to reach out to new and developing Grillers, to share some of the “Secrets” to making great BBQ. I am forever indebted Randy Hill (one of my Cutthroat Kitchen competitors) for staying in touch and helping out with the Radio Show whenever asked.

Things are also picking up on the Catering end. I just completed filming my first shoot as a BBQ Food Stylist for an International Commercial. [Will get you details soon.] Also, we have been selected to BBQ for the Santa Monica Police Department’s 120th Anniversary celebration. The Cookout will be held in May, and they are expecting around 500 Policemen (including Family and Friends). We have already added Kingsford Charcoal as a Sponsor, and I hope to include a couple of more soon. Finally, this month, my first ever in-depth interview with Keith Kurlander debuted online at Parkbench/Los Feliz (link below)

Regarding the Workshop… actually, “All Natural” and “Organic BBQ” are about lessening the effect of chemicals and pollutants that can sometimes be by-products of Grilling. We will use recycled paper, untreated wood, and all natural (chemical, hormone and preservative free) ingredients. Class Participants will not only cook Healthier BBQ, but they will learn how to make it taste more delicious than most of what is being offered out there Commercially.

If you will be in or around Los Angeles this Sunday (April 24, 2016), check out the website to see if Tickets are still available (link below). We also have a few slots reserved for Press and Food Bloggers, you can still contact me to confirm if you want to attend. Looking forward to all of us making our Best BBQ Ever(!) this coming Summer. Another Class may be added in time for the Memorial Day Holiday. Until next time, Eat and Be Well.

Grilling Class with Chef Mick Brown- Sunday April 24th, 2016- 10:00 am to 1:00 pm. Meets at King’s Roost, 3732 W. Sunset Bl., LA 90026. Limited Parking Available; enter driveway next to 3730 Sunset. (in Back).

Ticket/Info Website: https://squareup.com/store/kingsroostLA/item/april-am-pm-grilling-w-chef-mick-brown

Press Release: https://www.prlog.org/12550047-organic-bbq-grilling-class-hatches-at-kings-roost-in-los-angeles.html


Mick Brown, is Chef/Caterer and General Manager at Tastee BQ Grilling Co. With over 30 years Grilling Experience, he teaches Private BBQ Lessons to Individuals and Groups. In 2015, he won Grill Master Champion on Food Network’s Cutthroat Kitchen on special BBQ episode “Grill or Be Grilled” (Season 8, Episode 3). As a Blogger, he is Author of “The Adventures of Tastee BQ” and “BBQ Catering Confidential”. His newest project BBQ RESCUES!, includes a Blog Talk Radio Show, Youtube TV Channel and Podcasts on iTunes. He founded California Gold BBQ Rubs in 2013, which now offers Gluten Free, All-Natural HEROIC! BBQ Rub in local retailers and on Amazon.com.


The Kings Roost website http://www.kingsroost.com/

Cutthroat Kitchen “Grill or Be Grilled” (Youtube $1.99)


Cutthroat Kitchen “Grill or Be Grilled” -Alton’s After Show  http://www.foodnetwork.com/videos/sc/cutthroat-after-show-grill-0231539.html

Vanderpump Rules ‘Push Comes to Shove” http://www.bravotv.com/node/1107181

BBQ RESCUES! website https://bbqrescues.com

Tastee BQ Grilling Co. website http://tasteebqgrilling.com/

Interview with Parkbench by Kurt Kurlander  http://parkbench.com/usa/california/losangeles/losfeliz/blog/chef-mick-brown-g-m-of-tastee-bq-grilling-co-some-of-the-tastiest-bbq-in-los-angeles



Happy, Healthy and Hearty BBQ in 2015

Courtesy of http://www.bbqcateringconfidential.com


Fresh Grilled Tuna with Poki on Romaine/Kale Salad.

Yes, it is that time once again to reflect on another year gone by. As always, the world of BBQ continues it’s impressive growth in many ways. We have seen BBQ/Grilling related TV shows thrive on Food Channels, and in unexpected places like Travel TV. Online BBQ Blogs continue to grow in both popularity and with a wider variety of material available on the info super-highway. Both established and new forms of Social Media continue to create new bridges for BBQ Enthusiasts throughout the world.

#MickBrown #FrankenFood #FoodTruck

Promoting HEROIC! while visiting the Frankenfood Food Truck in Los Angeles.

For me, the Year 2014 has been a game-changer on many fronts. I had the opportunity to cater many events for a nice variety of new clients, along with old favorites. My BBQ Rub company expanded to offer a healthier alternative- HEROIC! Rub, which has been very well-received. I also had the chance to attend my first Gluten Free Expos and meet some of the exciting leaders of this Food Movement. I competed in my first-ever television Cooking Competition on Spike TV, and was featured in their humorous online video. Finally, had the pleasure of checking out BBQ in Chicago, New York, Las Vegas, Puerto Vallarta (Mexico), Toronto (Canada), as well as new spots here in Los Angeles.

A Guest at Catered BBQ Wedding takes small servings of Smoked Waygu Steak and Salmon, leaving plenty of room on the plate for Salad and Grilled Veggies.

A Guest at Catered BBQ Wedding takes small servings of Smoked Waygu Steak and Salmon, leaving plenty of room on the plate for Salad and Grilled Veggies.

In this New Year, I hope to work on-

1. Showing More Appreciation– Sounds simple, but the busier I get with ongoing projects, the simpler it gets to just put out Blog after Blog. This year I will make a bigger effort to keep up with reading fellow Bloggers, as well as staying in contact with followers of my Blogs.

2. Celebrate Healthier Eating– There is always a place in my heart (and my tummy) for the Traditional BBQ we grew up with, even with the fat and sugar. However, it is always my mission to find satisfying alternatives that offer big taste, with fewer Calories. I regularly offer Vegan, Vegetarian and Gluten Free Recipes. Will do my best to make them even better.

3. Do Diabetic BBQ– You haven’t heard of Diabetic BBQ? Sounds delicious, huh? Due to family reasons, I will be adding Diabetic-Friendly BBQ Recipes in the upcoming year. Though new to me, it isn’t too far from what I already do- grill with Superfoods whenever possible. These Recipes will consist of Veggies on 1/2 the plate, 1/4 with a healthy Starch and 1/4 with a lean Meat (protein). The big difference is making Meat the “Side Dish”. No more loading my plate with various BBQ Meats and Cheesy Potatoes (or Macaroni), saving a little room on the side for creamy Cole Slaw.

4. Share More of Your Recipes– Over the past year, I have had the privilege of making contact with many talented Food Bloggers, as well as Home Cooks. A few of their Recipes already appear on my blogs/websites, but there are so many more to share. You will be seeing them in the upcoming months.

For a twist, try Grilling your Tomatoes and Peppers before added them to your Sandwich, Salad or favorite Recipe.

For a twist, try Grilling your Tomatoes and Peppers before added them to your Sandwich, Salad or favorite Recipe.

That is it for now. I am looking forward to having more exciting and delicious adventures in the New Year 2015. Hope the same for you. Of course, BBQ will continue to grow and thrive in all-new ways. Wishing you the Best. Until next time, Eat and Be Well.


Mick Brown is a Food Blogger/Purveyor based in Los Angeles, with over 30 years BBQ and Grilling experience. Aside from Caterer and Private Grilling Instructor, his passions are creating Easy Grilling Recipes and searching for the World’s Best Flavors. General Manager of Tastee BQ Grilling Co. and the new California Gold BBQ Rubs. He is also author of web blog “BBQ Catering Confidential” and the serial “The Adventures of Tastee BQ.” Email- Mick@TasteeBQ.com

What’s Grilling in 2014? The Top 10 Ways We Think of Grilling

Basics of BBQ #2

Courtesy of http://www.BBQCateringConfidential.com


Fresh Ribeye Steaks on the the Grill is what most people consider Grilling. Most wouldn’t guess they are being cooked on an indoor Grill by Gaggenau.

What is Grilling?

For most people, “Grilling” pertains to the use of an outdoor Grill. However, not all “Grilled” foods are made that way. When you see Grilled Chicken in the Freezer Department at the store, it is unlikely that any of it has seen the Outdoors or a Grill. Similarly, a great number of restaurants have Grilled Chicken and Steak on their Menus for Salads, Sides, Pizzas and Entrees. Many of them use a Grill Pan to achieve the familiar Grill Marks, while others Pan Sear, Broil, or Bake the meat.


Grilled Cat Food is more for making human mouths water, probably not of much consequence to our furry friends.

For better or worse, there are no “BBQ Police” to prevent manufacturers from even offering “Grilled” flavors of pet foods… So it seems that adding any form of Charred or Smoky flavor is enough to call a product “Grilled” nowadays. Of course, many GrillMasters shudder at the thought of this. For me, I shrug it off. Consumers are always free to pick and choose the products they want. If something labeled “Grilled” meets their satisfaction, that is what the marketplace is all about.


This indoor built-in Mesquite Charcoal Grill has been at Musso & Frank Grill in Los Angeles since 1919. It is said to be the oldest working Restaurant Grill in Hollywood.

When you see something labeled Grilled, it usually falls under one of these 10 Most Used Categories or Ways We Think of Grilling:

1. Grilled Flavored– Products that use smoky spice blends, manufactured seasonings or processes to add flavor.

2. Cooked on a Flat Pan or Griddle– Most popular as the method for making Grilled Cheese and grilling Bacon Wrapped Hot Dogs.

3. Stovetop Grill Pan– The easiest way to get Grill Marks from indoor cooking, but not Outdoor Grilled flavor. An invaluable tool for Food Stylists and Photographers.

4. Oven-Safe Grill Pan or Broiler– These are good ways to get Grill Marks and add authentic Charred flavor to foods.

5. Indoor Countertop Grilling Devices– Probably the most famous is the George Forman Grill, which opened the floodgates to a stockade of similar items. These are said to cook foods with less Fat.

6. Indoor Built-in Gas and Electric Grills– Found in many Restaurants and upscale Home Kitchens, these come close to replicating the flavor or Outdoor Grilling, but not as close as the next one.

7. Indoor Wood and Charcoal Burning Grills– The best way to replicate the flavor of Outdoor Grilling. However, a challenge to get approved in Restaurants for sanitary reasons and concerns about ventilation. While rare to see in Restaurants nowadays, my favorite is the 90+ year old Mesquite Grill, still found today at Musso & Frank Grill in Hollywood, CA.

8. Indoor and Outdoor Wood Burning Ovens– If they can “Grill” food using conventional ovens, these offer the flavor closest to their outdoor cousins with grates.

9. Open Flame and Outdoor Pit Cooking– The oldest form of Grilling that exists. Our ancestors were not quite able to purchase Weber Grills, but managed to find a myriad of ways to cook food over open flame.

10. Homemade, Masonry and Manufactured Grills– What we most think of when we speak of Grilling. They use Charcoal, Wood, Gas, Electricity or Lasers to cook food. Ironically, most “Grilled” food products sold on the market today never come anywhere near an Outdoor Grill.


The DIY Ceramic BBQ Pot Smoker from “The Adventures of TasteeBQ”.


Wouldn’t you love to have been there when, after discovering Fire, the first Caveman decided to try putting some sort of Fruit, Vegetable or Meat on a Grill? Even before the time of known migration, ancestral Pitt Masters from all over the continent managed to find creative ways to cook food. This tradition is kept popular today thanks to Facebook and other Photo sharing websites and platforms where people share homemade Grills from all over the world. They are made out of anything from Patio Furniture to Shopping Carts, and even Porsche automobiles. Photos of the DIY Ceramic BBQ Pot Smoker that I made last year (using flower pots) are still being shared around the world.

Happy Grilling for Labor Day, and all other days you decide to Grill. Until next time, Eat and Be Well.


Thanks for being among the first to visit the new “Basics of BBQ” Series. I am happy to preview it here on the Blog. Some material will be used for a current book project, tentatively called “The BBQ Catering Confidential Cookbook”.  A version will also be shared on the California Gold BBQ Rubs Recipes Pages, under the New Owner’s Manual. Stay tuned, next time we will start answering the question- “What’s That Smoking?”.


Mick Brown is a Food Blogger/Purveyor based in Los Angeles, with over 30 years BBQ and Grilling experience. Aside from Caterer and Private Grilling Instructor, his passions are creating Easy Grilling Recipes and searching for the World’s Best Flavors. General Manager of Tastee BQ Grilling Co. and the new California Gold BBQ Rubs. He is also author of web serial blog “The Adventures of Tastee BQ.” Email- Mick@TasteeBQ.com

 LINKS (non-sponsored)-

Musso & Frank Grill/ Hollywood, CA.- http://mussoandfrank.com/

Make DIY Ceramic BBQ Pot Smoker in 5 Easy Steps/ The Adventures of TasteeBQ- http://tasteebq.wordpress.com/2013/08/30/make-diy-ceramic-bbq-pot-smoker-in-5-easy-steps-tasteebq-uses-gluten-free-bbq-rub-for-citrus-pulled-pork/

George Forman Grills- http://www.georgeforemancooking.com/

Weber Grills- http://www.weber.com/

Gaggenau Cooking Equipment- http://www.gaggenau.com/us/

Grilled Cat Food- https://www.fancyfeast.com/gourmet-cat-products/wet-cat-food/grilled

New BBQ Tasting Tours Los Angeles and Best of Barbecue in London

By Mick Brown

Courtesy of www.BBQCateringConfidential.com

#PittCo #BBQBeefRibs

Pitt Cue Co. Smoked Beef Ribs with Bone Marrow Mashed Potatoes and Pickled Red Cabbage. The Best BBQ Dish I had in London.


Barbecue Season is in full swing in countries all over the world. If you are like me, you’re always searching for something exciting and new in your travels. Especially when it comes to Food. Since my interest is Grilling, I always try to find something grilled on restaurant menus wherever I go. Wish every city had a BBQ Tour, where I could link up with a BBQ Chef and explore some of the best local places to eat (and avoid the over-priced tourist traps with mediocre food).


#SteakCoLondon #BBQLondon

Steak & Co. is a Class Act with a variety of Rib styles. They are said to have some of the Best Mac and Cheese in London.

As it turns out, I usually end up creating culinary tours for myself whenever I visit cities outside of Los Angeles. I utilize a combination of Yelp, Trip Advisor, “Local BBQ Restaurant Reviews” (Google Searches), and good old “Word of Mouth” from Locals. Thanks to Facebook and Google, I am also creating a Friends’ network of Gluten Free and BBQ Foodies and Chefs from all over the U.S., and abroad.


#MickBrown #RipleysLondon

At Ripley’s Museum London, I quiz a friendly Local about where to find the best BBQ.

When I am not doing BBQ, I like to take city tours of the best local Cuisines and do Cooking Classes to learn how to make them. In the past couple of years I have been fortunate to tour exciting food destinations like New Orleans, Paris, Mexico, Miami, Costa Rica and Chicago, among others. Some of these experiences have been subjects in “The Adventures of TasteeBQ”.


#BodeansLondon #BBQBurntEnds

Authentic Texas style BBQ is alive and well at Bodean’s BBQ in London. They are popular for house made BBQ Sauces and delicious Burnt Ends.

Recently, I have been hearing from people who are planning travel to London, so I decided to share one of my favorite BBQ cities ever. I was there in the Fall of 2012, following the Olympics. Hopefully, the London BBQ scene hasn’t changed too much in the past year, or so. Please share any updates if you have more recent Pics of BBQ in London.

#AdamsRib #LondonBBQ

Tender Chicken and Ribs taste a more baked than BBQ at Adam’s Ribs. But the BBQ Sauce is great with the Fries.


#WestEndLondon #TheatreRow

From Adam’s Ribs, you get great views of Theatre Row in the West End.

Of course, throughout my travels there have been “Hits and Misses” when it comes to BBQ restaurants. The Catering part of my company has recently branched out to offer BBQ Tasting Tours in Los Angeles. Open to both L.A. Locals and visitors alike, friends have asked why would I promote the competition?  I look at it a different way.  As a Caterer, I seldom cook for groups of less than 10, and I have no intention of ever opening a BBQ restaurant in L.A. [Been there , done that with Chicago Pizza.] Plus it is a chance to take my BBQ Classes on the road, meet new people and nosh on some of the Best BBQ in town. The next Tour is coming up in a couple of weeks (details below). In the end, BBQ Tasting Tours is another small step in my company’s mission to Make the World a Better Place to Eat. Hope to see you there. Until next time, Eat and Be Well.

#MoroccanGrilledChicken #MomosLondon

As a fan of International BBQ is was great to have Lunch at Momo Restaurant in London. Their Moroccan style Grilled Chicken was phenomenal, and came with Couscous and all the Trimmings.


1. Pitt Cue Co.- 1 Newburgh St, London W1F 7RB, United Kingdom +44 20 7287 5578- Great quality Smoked Meats, creative Side Dishes and Daily Specials.

2. Steak & Co.- Irving Street.London WC2A 0HAEngland, 0207 839 8100- Elegant Steakhouse with nice variety of Ribs and traditional American BBQ Dishes.

3. Bodean’s BBQ- 10 Poland Street London, W1F 8PZ  020 7287 7575- A slice of the South with authentic Texas Style smoked BBQ, and more.

4. Momo Restaurant- 25, Heddon street London W1B 4BH + 44 207 434 4040- Lavish Moroccan Restaurant with excellent Grilled Chicken and the works.

5. Adams Rib- 9/23 Shaftesbury AvenueLondon W1V 7HAEngland +44(0)20 77346811- BBQ is tender and tasty. Great location for Theater Row.


Mick Brown is a Food Blogger/Purveyor based in Los Angeles, with over 30 years BBQ and Grilling experience. Aside from Caterer and Private Grilling Instructor, his passions are creating Easy Grilling Recipes and searching for the World’s Best Flavors. General Manager of Tastee BQ Grilling Co. and the new California Gold BBQ Rubs. He is also author of web serial blog “The Adventures of Tastee BQ.” Email- Mick@TasteeBQ.com




For More see The Adventures of TasteeBQ “Best of BBQ in London” http://www.buzzfeed.com/tasteebq/the-best-of-bbq-in-london-2kzn

Pit Cue Co.,  London http://www.pittcue.co.uk/home/ 

Steak & Co., Lmdon http://www.steakand.co.uk/

Bodean’s BBQ, London http://www.bodeansbbq.com/

Adams Rib, London http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g186338-d2200833-Reviews-Adams_Rib-London_England.html

Momo Restaurant, London http://momoresto.com/restaurant/london/momo/restaurant/

BBQ Tasting Tours Los Angeles- Tickets, Info Tour July 26, 2014 http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/774599

BBQ Tasting Tours- Tastee BQ Grilling Co. http://tasteebqgrilling.com/bbq-tasting-tours-los-angeles/

Bacon Cheddar BraziBurgers: Gluten Free BBQ for the 4th of July

by Mick Brown

Courtesy of http://www.BBQCateringConfidential.com

#BraziBites #HeroicBBQRub #BraziBurgers

Bacon Cheddar BraziBurgers are delicious and easy to make. Even better with Grilled Onion and Basil Mayoli.

I first encountered Cheese Bread Brazi Bites at the Gluten Free (GF) Expo in Pasadena in June 2014. In a ballroom dominated by Sweet GF Treats, it was really a delight to discover these savory Snacks. Made with Tapioca Starch, the texture is soft and smooth. The Cheese Bread Snacks (with Parmesan, Cheddar and Bacon) didn’t taste anything like Diet Food. In fact, the intense Cheesy flavor reminded me of the Deep Fried Cheddar Balls I used to get in Chicago and Wisconsin. I have been obsessed with Brazi Bites ever since.

#BraziBites #GlutenFreeExpo

Brazi Bites were demonstarted at the Gluten Free Expo, sponsored by the Celiac Disease Foundation in June, 2014.

The opportunity recently came up for me to cater a Political Fundraiser, hosted by a friend who happens to be Gluten Free. The Menu was to be substantial Hors D’oeuvres that people could grab and go while having conversation. When I mentioned the possibility of making Mini-Burgers using Brazi Bites, the hosts loved it. So did the crowd on the day of the party. The Fresh Baked Buns made them especially delectable. Perfect for the 4th of July, or any party. No one even guessed that the Mini-Burgers were GF.

#BraziBites #BraziBurgers #HeroicBBQRub #CaliforniaGoldBBQRubs

BraziBurgers are made with Brazi Bites Cheese Bread Snacks and seasoned with HEROIC! Herb and Spice Blend.


(For 10 Mini-Burgers)


1 lb. Ground Beef (80/20 suggested)

2 tbsp. HEROIC! Herb and Spice Blend (by California Gold BBQ Rubs)

1 tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce

1 tsp. Fresh Ground Black Pepper

1/2 tsp. Salt

10 frozen Cheese Bread Brazi Bites with Bacon

For Mayoli:

1 Cup GF Mayonnaise

1/3 Cup Chopped Fresh Basil

2 Thick Slices White Onion

1+1/2 tbsp. HEROIC! Blend

Cooking Instructions: (If no access to Grill, feel free to use indoor Grill Pan, Skillet or Broiler)

1. Preheat Oven to 400 Degrees and BBQ Grill to Medium High. Mix Ground Beef evenly with BBQ Rub, Worcestershire Sauce, Salt and Pepper. Separate into 10 Mini 1.5 oz. Burger Patties.

2. Place frozen Brazi Bites 1 inch apart on Baking Sheet (slightly greased or parchment lined). Bake for 20 Minutes or until Golden Brown.

3. Season Onion Slices on both sides with 1 Tbsp. BBQ Rub, then Grill for 5 Minutes each Side. Grill Mini-Burgers for 2 Minutes per side (or to desired doneness). Don’t walk away, they cook really quickly.

4. Once Onions are done, Chop them into a small mince, and mix with Mayonnaise, Basil and 1/2 Tbsp. BBQ Rub.

5. Gently slice Brazi Bites in half to form Buns. Fill each with one Burger and a generous Dollup of Mayoli. Serve and Enjoy. [We had optional GF Mustard, Pickle Chips and HEROIC! Ketchup/BBQ Sauce as condiments.]


Brazi Bites (Available in Los Angeles at Whole Foods)- http://www.brazibites.com/

The Brazi Bites Story on Martha Stewart American Made- https://my.marthastewart.com/content/brazi-bites

California Gold BBQ Rubs- http://www.californiagoldrub.com

HEROIC! on Amazon.com- http://www.amazon.com/HEROIC-BBQ-Gluten-Free-Added/dp/B00IEEYCRQ

5 of L.A.’s Best Hidden Places for the Freshest Meats- Pt. 2- Where are the Fish Tanks?

by Mick Brown


Fresh Lobster picked from tank at California Market in September 2013.

It is no secret that the best meals start with fresh, quality ingredients.  In this new blog, we are talking about some of the hard-to-find places where you can send a Caterer for the best quality Meats in the Los Angeles area. Sad to report that the Fish Tanks have been removed at California Market, 4317 Beverly Blvd. Los Angeles, CA., 90004  (http://www.yelp.com/biz/california-market-los-angeles). I had driven past this place for years, with no idea of what they had inside. From Beverly Boulevard it may look like an abandoned grocery mart. The entrance is actually on the other side, facing away from the street. Once you enter their bustling parking lot, you know there is plenty of shopping happening here. I’ll pay homage to what was, while at the same time asking the title question. If anyone knows of somewhere else where fresh (edible) fish is sold from the tank, please leave a comment.  [A full list of my picks, with Links, appears at the bottom.]


Where else can you find Live Lobsters for only $5.99 per Pound?Really, where???

One of my best bargains ever was two live whole lobsters from California Market for the grand total of less than $16.00. Took them home and boiled them in a pot of BBQ Rub seasoned water. Then Grilled them and served with Seasoned Garlic and Herb Butter. Delicious.


Grilled Lobster served with Seasoned Garlic and Herb Butter.

California Market also had fresh Abalone and tanks of live Halibut for $16.99 per Pound. They would help you pick the right one for your desired weight. Then the Butcher would perform “the deed” and send you home with flawless filets. Why go on and on about what used to be available? Because I want to find anyone who knows of a similar place that still exists.


Goodbye to the Fish Tanks at California Market. Thanks for the Memories.

The good news is that you can still find great deals on Fresh Frozen Fish at California Market. You can also ask the Butchers for the fresh Catch of the Day and they will point you to it.  If you want prepared food, the Noodle House at the store entrance sells some amazing sweet or spicy Fresh Noodle Bowls you can eat there or take-out. On Yelp, some of the reviews are misleading. Like the one that says they don’t have Kimchi. California Market makes it fresh every day and has a whole aisle full of selections. My day job is to run a Los Angeles catering biz, which has recently expanded into manufacturing a new line of BBQ Rubs. Hope you don’t mind if I leave a couple of links below. Eat and Be Well.

5 Most Hidden Places for Fresh Meat in Los Angeles

1. California Market- 4317 Beverly Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90004  http://www.yelp.com/biz/california-market-los-angeles . The Live Fish Tanks are gone, but ask the Butcher for the Catch of the Day.

2. Marconda’s Meats and Puritan Chickens- Farmer’s Market, 6333 West 3rd St #514. Los Angeles, CA 90036-3183 (323) 938-5131  http://www.marcondas.com/  This butcher has the best Fresh Meats with reasonably priced Sales, as well as premium steaks such as Waygu. They also make their own Marinades, Sausages and Side Dishes.

3. Monsieur Marcel Gourmet Market- Farmer’s Market, 6333 w 3rd St. Los Angeles, CA 90036   http://www.mrmarcel.com/gourmet-markets/  The Deli has fine Cheeses from all over Europe and other parts of the World. You can get premium Meats, including Paris Ham at prices that cost only a bit more per pound than the gelatinous Hams you get blister packed from the Grocery Store.

4. Harvey’s Guss Meat Co.-949 S. Ogden Drive, Los Angeles, CA. 90036 (323) 937-4622 Miracle Mile http://www.harveysgussmeat.com/home.html Talk about hidden. There is no store sign above the back Alley entrance. We are talking top grade Aged Meats here.  Hanging on hooks in a Walk-In Refrigerator. Hours are limited.

5. Boccato’s Groceries-3127 Manhattan Ave, Hermosa Beach, CA 90254 Phone:(310) 376-0574  http://www.yelp.com/biz/boccatos-groceries-hermosa-beach The Meat Dept. has everything from Steaks, Chickens, Lamb and more. You can get it plain or pre-marinated in their special seasonings. They have a fully functional kitchen to go along with the Deli. Our favorite find is their Rotisserie Turkey Sandwich.


Mick Brown is a Food Blogger/Purveyor based in Los Angeles, with over 30 years BBQ and Grilling experience. Aside from Catering, his passions are creating Easy Grilling Recipes and searching for the World’s Best Flavors. General Manager of Tastee BQ Grilling Co. and the new California Gold BBQ Rubs. He is also author of web serial blog “The Adventures of Tastee BQ.” Email- Mick@TasteeBQ.com



Tastee BQ Catering Co.- http://www.tasteebq.com

California Gold BBQ Rubs- http://www.californiagoldrub.com/

Facebook- https://www.facebook.com/CaliforniaGoldBBQRubs

Available on Amazon-  http://www.amazon.com/California-Gold-BBQ-Power–10oz/dp/B00CVCMR88