Cookbook Profile

The BBQ Queens' Big Book of Barbecue

by Karen Adler and Judith Fertig

The BBQ Queens  

Don't let the tiaras fool you, women can barbecue! Inspired by a local disc jockey who scoffed at the idea of women barbecuing, Karen Adler and Judith Fertig formed an all-female barbecue team, donned tiaras, and fired up their smokers and grills to compete in the Kansas City Battle of the Sexes Barbecue Contest. Winning the contest and defending the barbecue reputation of women everywhere was so much fun that they've been traveling the country ever since, smoking and grilling at competitions, festivals, and more than 100 cooking classes a year. Their quest is to prove that women can barbecue—they just put their own unique spin on taming the flame. Adler and Fertig, cookbook authors, culinary instructors, and fun-loving friends from Kansas City, are as serious about the art of barbecue as they are about having a royally good time. In their own words, "Some women wear false eyelashes. Some women wear purple. The BBQ Queens wear tiaras and beauty queen sashes, lots of jewelry, and sometimes even big hair. It's all for a good cause, though—getting people excited about the thrill of the grill and the art of slow smoking."

The BBQ Queens' Big Book of Barbecue brings a distinctively female perspective to the art of barbecue. Rather than viewing the grill or smoker as a fiery toy or obsessing about perfecting their secret recipe for ribs, women—often responsible for shopping, planning, and preparing the meal even when the men are doing the actual cooking—see outdoor cooking as a tasty and fun way to get dinner on the table. For the BBQ Queens, that means pulling together a whole meal (plus leftovers!), keeping things as low-mess as possible, and focusing on ease of preparation and short cooking times. They lay the groundwork for expert grilling and smoking with clear explanations of basic techniques, then encourage backyard cooks to branch out and experiment with new versions or flavors. Each master recipe for basics like chicken wings or turkey steaks is followed by suggestions on how to use rubs, marinades, and sauces—as well as techniques like skewering, stuffing, and planking—to serve up endless meal possibilities. The BBQ Queens take a fresh look at the power of outdoor cooking, harnessing it to create practical, delicious meals with a relaxed attitude.

With this, the first title in their cookbook series, the BBQ Queens are on a mission: to bring their uniquely female approach to slow-smoked barbecue and hot and fast grilling to the millions of barbecue-loving Americans. In the spring and summer of 2005, Adler and Fertig will travel to twenty cities across the country with their tiaras on and their tongs in hand. Get ready to get fired up about outdoor cooking the BBQ Queens' way!


Buy the Book!


The BBQ Queens' Big Book of Barbecue
by Karen Adler and Judith Fertig
Harvard Common Press
$32.95 cloth 1-55832-296-5
$18.95 paper 1-55832-297-3
Information provided by the publisher.


The BBQ Queens' Big Book of Barbecue



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This page created May 2005