My next cookbook, Basic to Brilliant, Y’all: Recipes and Recollections of a Southern Culinary Journey is the lead book for Ten Speed for Fall 2011. The concept is much like my first book – simple basic recipes with accessible ingredients. I’ll have the same smattering of stories about Mama, Meme, Martha – my travels around the world and growing up in the South. What does distinguish it from Bon Appétit, Y’all is that each recipe will have a short recipe, presentation tip, or technique that transforms the recipe from Basic to Brilliant – essentially making it more chef-inspired, something that you might have if you came over and had dinner at my house. I’m really excited about the premise and testing is going great.
I’ll be testing this recipe again this weekend, fine-tuning a few things. I really like the direction it’s going. It’s some kind of good. The bourbon is a new addition, previously I used water. The alcohol will really help bring the flavor of the tomatoes to the forefront. I’m also giving it a try with beer.
I may write it up for working on the grill or BBQ, as well. If anyone does that, I’d be curious to hear about it. I think it would be somewhere around 6-7 hours at 220, but I haven’t tested that yet.
So, this recipe for Spicy Pulled Pork Shoulder needs one more round to put it to bed. And, this weekend I’ll also figure out what I want to do to make it brilliant.
I posted on facebook a query to see if anyone wanted to give it a shot, as well. It’s pretty cool, I think to see what a wide variety of people think. Well, my inbox started dinging like a slot machine! So, here’s the recipe and my testing sheet below. If you are interested and want to participate, please give it a try and send me back your notes and comments. Photos are welcome and I’ll be happy to post y’alls notes and pictures.
Have a safe and happy 4th of July.
Bon Appétit, Y’all!
VIRGINIA WILLIS TEST SHEET
Basic to Brilliant »
Flavor grade A/B/C?
On a scale of 1-10, one being easiest and ten most difficult, how did this recipe rate?
Please make sure to mark all times and what to look for when XYZ is “done”.
From start to finish, how long did it take you to make this recipe?
Was the dish properly seasoned?
Was any portion of the recipe confusing?
Were you unfamiliar with any of the ingredients? If so, which?
Were any details missing?
What did you like least about this recipe?