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BBQ & You: A recipe from The CIA's 'Low and Slow' cookbook

'Low and Slow' is available now from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
'Low and Slow' is available now from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.www.ciachef.edu

Today, Hartford Books Examiner gets things cooking with an exclusive recipe for you to try, excerpted from Low and Slow: The Art and techniques of Braising, BBQ, and Slow Roasting (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $19.99) by The Culinary Institute of America and Robert Briggs.

Published earlier this month, Low and Slow is the latest offering from The Culinary Institute of America (CIA). Founded in 1946, The CIA is an independent, not-for-profit college offering bachelor's and associate degrees in culinary arts and baking and pastry arts, as well as certificate programs in culinary arts, Latin cuisines, and wine and beverage studies. A network of more than 45,000 alumni has helped the CIA earn its reputation as the world's premier culinary college. The CIA also offers courses for professionals and food enthusiasts, as well as consulting services for the foodservice and hospitality industry.

Robert Briggs was a longtime professor and administrator at The CIA. Also a barbecue enthusiast, he taught the popular Low and Slow adult education course in addition to his many courses in the college’s degree programs. During his tenure, Mr. Briggs also oversaw two of the school’s award-winning restaurants, The Escoffier Restaurant and St. Andrew’s Café, and served as associate dean for advanced cooking and assistant director for continuing education. Prior to his career at The CIA, Mr. Briggs held various chef positions in restaurants throughout the country.

A selection of the Doubleday Book Club, Low and Slow was also reviewed in Publishers Weekly, which called the title “a concise and workmanlike volume of lessons and recipes.” PW noted, “Just when one thinks that the collection is weighed down with standards like osso buco or braised oxtails, Briggs will pull a rabbit out of the hat, or more likely, a duck, smoke-roasted, with dried cranberry sauce, or a smoked trout, served with apple-horseradish cream, or even a plate of ravioli, stuffed with barbecued pork butt …”

From the publisher:

Low & Slow is the book for anyone who’s ready to go beyond grilling and master the craft of traditional barbecue. And not just barbecue, but braising and slow roasting, too—together the three pillars of low and slow cooking. With Low & Slow, you’ll learn to apply the magic of low heat and long cooking times to transform tough cuts of meat into juicy, flavorful finished dishes. The pros at The Culinary Institute of America have packed all their expertise, along with mouthwatering color photographs, into a compact volume that’s sure to become your go-to handbook for all things slow cooking. Low & Slow explains what you need to know to make the most of every cut of meat, any time of year, whether you’re braising a pot of short ribs, barbecuing beef brisket in the backyard, or slow roasting lamb in the oven. Plus, with chapters on homemade rubs and sauces and enough sides to accompany every meal, if you’re passionate about cooking meat, this may be the only cookbook you ever need.

Now, here’s a recipe to ignite your culinary creativity …

Pig’s Ear BBQ Pork Butt

MAKES 10 SERVINGS

Pig’s Ear is the section of Lincoln, New Hampshire where I grew up. This recipe is the amalgamation of a variety of different recipes that I have tested over the years. It is a little more complicated than the Braised Pulled Pork Barbecue Sandwiches with Coleslaw (page 25). While that recipe is bold, in-your-face spicy, and acidic, this recipe features a more complex layering of flavors that gives it depth.

One 8- to 10-lb pork butt, bone in

BRINE

2 tbsp packed dark brown sugar

2 tbsp kosher salt

1 tsp garlic powder

1 cup apple cider

1 cup water

1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

DRY RUB

½ cup chili powder

¼ cup sweet paprika

¼ cup smoked Spanish paprika

2 tbsp packed dark brown sugar

2 tbsp kosher salt

1 tbsp freshly cracked black pepper

1. Rinse the pork with cool water and dry thoroughly. Trim any excess fat from the pork, leaving a ¼-inch layer.

2. To make the brine: Combine the sugar, salt, garlic powder, cider, water, and Worcestershire sauce and stir until the salt and sugar are dissolved. Using a brining needle or injector, inject the brine evenly around the pork butt, being sure to inject at varying depths. Use all of the brine mixture.

3. To make the dry rub: Combine the chili powder, sweet paprika, smoked paprika, sugar, salt, black pep­per, onion powder, garlic powder, Old Bay, and red pepper flakes.

4. Rub the prepared yellow mustard evenly onto the pork butt, and sprinkle the pork with the dry rub. (The general rule is ½ ounce of dry rub per pound of pork.) Gently rub the dry rub into the pork, adding more rub as needed. Wrap the pork butt in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight. Reserve any remaining rub.

Excerpted from LOW AND SLOW © 2014 by the Culinary Institute of America. Reproduced by permission of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, all rights reserved.

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With thanks to Rebecca Levenson, Culinary Publicist at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, for providing this recipe for reader enjoyment.