Eat at the Feed Rack Grill
Discover mouth-watering Texas smoke BBQ at a cabin resort in Concan, TX on your next vacation.
Is everything just bigger in Texas, or is it better too? Now, Texas is big as it is more than 650 miles wide and almost 800 miles long, but plenty of folks would argue that things are better here too.
Take Texas traditional BBQ as an example. Many other states in the U.S. specialize in BBQ, but nothing compares with Texas smoke BBQ.
Travel across America, and you will discover that you can get outstanding BBQ in Kansas City, Memphis and the Carolinas.
In Kansas City, they specialize in a tomato-based sauce that’s sweet and spicy. People who know this style of BBQ expect pork and smoked brisket with charred, crispy ends.
Then, there’s Memphis BBQ where pork takes center stage. It’s prepared with a dry rub that can include nearly 50 different spices and seasonings. The meat is cooked in a pit without sauce, though a tangy and tomato-based sauce may be served on the side.
In the Carolinas, pork is once again the star —with North Carolina specializing in shoulders while South Carolina uses the whole pig. North Carolina style favors pork that is brushed using a spice-and-vinegar mop while cooking and a ketchup-based sauce served on the side. Expect to find the tang of mustard in the sauce or rub. These meals are finished with coleslaw, green beans and hush puppies.
Texas Traditional BBQ
As good as the barbecue is in these other states, there’s nothing like the BBQ in Texas.
In fact, BBQ is so huge in this state, that there are actually four distinct styles of this home cooking. Each style is named for the region in Texas where it was created. This means that you’ll experience different types of BBQ in the East, South and West of the state, but it’s the Central style that is the most famous and most often imitated.
In the mid-nineteenth century, many Czech and German immigrants settled in Texas. Their populations were centered between San Antonio and Austin. These people knew how to eat. Meats and sausages were their staple foods.
Usually, meat and sausage were sold fresh in markets, but it was known that smoking helped to preserve the meat. Storekeepers started slow cooking or smoking any meat and sausage that did not promptly sell in their markets.
The locals caught on fast. The smoky, rich flavors that were brought out by the slow cooking and the smoking made these meats even more desirable than fresh meat. Soon, barbecued meats were available and in huge demand across the whole state.
Five Distinct Styles of BBQ
There are many different styles of barbecue in Texas, each with its own sauces, seasonings, and styles of cooking.
If you check out a BBQ joint in East Texas, chances are good that you’ll be served a plate of meat that was prepared with a wet marinade. This meat is cooked over indirect heat using hickory or occasionally pecan wood.
Depending on where you eat, you could encounter an abundance of marinades and spices. This meat is cooked incredibly slowly, which means that it’s ready when it starts falling off the bone.
That’s handy, because pitmasters who specialize in East Texas BBQ serve up the meat on sandwiches after chopping up the meat.
This juicy and savory BBQ style holds another surprise if you get close to the border with Louisana. This is where some Cajun influence arrives, adding items to the menu such as po’ boys and boudin sausage.
Not surprisingly, South Texas BBQ takes a lot of inspiration from barbacoa, which is Mexican style BBQ. To prepare meat the South Texas way, an underground pit is lined with bricks. Mesquite wood is added to the pit, and this is burned down to coals. The coals are covered with a layer of leaves, and the meat rests on top of the leaves.
The specialties in South Texas BBQ include the whole cow head, an entire lamb or a whole goat. The meat falls off the bone when it is fully cooked, and it is served with a sweet sauce that’s based on molasses. To experience true South Texas BBQ, make sure that the meat is put into a taco.
West Texas, or Hill Country, BBQ is yet another style that many describe as being prepared “cowboy style.” Basically, this means that the meat is cooked using direct heat over mesquite wood and hot coals.
This makes Hill Country BBQ more like grilling than true barbecuing. In fact, this is the style of Texas BBQ that comes directly from Czech and German culture. The most important meats in this style of BBQ are whole chickens, sausage, chops and briskets.
People who love West Texas BBQ appreciate that it excels at capturing flavor by rendering fat over those hot coals.
Central Texas BBQ is unlike the BBQ that is served in any other part of the country. In some ways, it is far simpler.
This may be because it is considered the original style of Texas BBQ. No fancy preparation is needed as pitmasters want to make sure that the meat’s own flavor is the star of the show.
You won’t find sauces and marinades being used by pitmasters who specialize in Central Texas BBQ. Instead, the meat is prepared with a salt and pepper dry rub. Slow roasting over indirect heat using post oak, pecan or mesquite wood supplies the meat with its exceptional flavor.
How do you know you’re eating Central Texas-style BBQ? You can tell by the way it’s served.
If your order comes out on a cafeteria tray made of metal that’s covered with butcher paper, and you ordered your meat by the pound, you are eating authentic Central Texas BBQ.
In fact, you probably ordered two, three or more meats for your meal. With Central Texas BBQ, which most people consider to be Texas traditional BBQ, meat is the star of the show. This is why only a salt and pepper dry rub is used in preparation. These ingredients enhance the meat’s natural flavor.
What else sets Central Texas BBQ apart from the rest? It’s the beef brisket that is always the main attraction. You’ll probably also see plenty of beef and pork ribs, and perhaps some smoked turkey, but it always comes back to the brisket.
When you order brisket at a restaurant that serves Texas smoke BBQ, you may see that the menu refers to the “flat” and the “point” of the brisket. The point is the portion with the higher fat content, making it the generally preferred cut. Because it’s marbled with fat, pitmasters and those in the know may call the point the moist part of the brisket.
Most restaurants feature both the flat and the point, and people frequently cook them together. The flat is the more difficult portion to prepare to perfection because of its lower fat content, but when it’s done right it’s delicious.
Beef ribs are bigger and have a more intense flavor than pork ribs. Plate ribs are considered the ideal cut, but they can be hard to find in restaurants and butcher shops. A good alternative is chuck ribs. They aren’t as big, but they still have plenty of meat and can be served individually.
Add a few condiments like pickles, white onions and white bread, and you’re ready for an authentic experience. It’s even more memorable if you eat with your hands, which is the right way to appreciate true Texas BBQ.
Are you planning a getaway that includes cabins in Concan TX? If so, we have an adventure in store for you.
Concan is the home of the Feed Rack Grill, located next to the pool where you can stay in some beautiful rustic cabins.
The Feed Rack Grill may be brand new, but it is serving the kind of Texas traditional BBQ that’s been a part of our state’s culture for more than 200 years.
Order brisket, chopped beef, pulled pork or smoked sausage by the pound when you’ve got a crowd to feed. The Feed Rack Grill also offers platters with one, two or three meats of your choice. Each platter comes with your choice of two sides.
The sides include familiar favorites like potato salad, fries, coleslaw and baked beans. Choose a meat sandwich or one of our signature burgers if that’s where your appetite takes you.
Concan is home to Texas smoke BBQ, and if you’re looking for cabins in Concan TX, there’s no better choice than a property where you can stay, swim and eat your fill at the Feed Rack Grill.
Come sample the Texas traditional BBQ in Concan today.