During this period of pandemic lockdown, and as the weather has begun to warm, I’ve started smoking meat again on my backyard Weber grill. Being a good Texan, I’ve loved eating smoked meat ever since I was a little kid. One of my grandfathers was a tremendous home chef who enjoyed smoking everything from fish to game, while my other grandfather was a master of pit barbecue, delivering up extraordinary chickens that I still haven’t been able to recreate. When I lived in Austin (and later San Antonio), I fell hard for the central Texas barbecue belt – eating at places like Smitty’s and Kreuz Market whenever I had the time to pop down to Lockhart. So yesterday, as I was smoking meat in my own backyard, I remembered this photo from a visit to Kreuz in 2014.
This is another photo I took using my Fuji X100, and it shows exactly the kind of moment that camera handled perfectly. I was looking for a photo from inside the pit area of the market, and this angle of the knife block and cutting board really captured the ambiance of the spot where the pit masters will prepare your meat right in front of you. In the background, big smokers are preparing barbecue for the evening rush (and possibly even the next day). The man in the background provides motion to the photo, conveying a sense of activity in the kitchen. (I should note the man is not Kreuz’s legendary pitmaster Mr. Roy Perez, who was not in the kitchen at the moment I took this.)
I hope that everyone is staying sane in this time. And remember, if you have a backyard, a grill, some charcoal, and a few woodchips – you too can make smoke and fire that will transform meat to delicious food that warms your soul.