Smoke Signals: Meaty resolutions


Shahin plans to move beyond brisket this year and give pastrami a try. (James M. Thresher)

But maybe she has a point. We so often break our resolutions, maybe we’d be better off thinking of them as suggestions. We wouldn’t feel the pressure that comes with saying we will do a thing, then (nearly always) not.

But I will tempt fate again this year and make a resolution in the old fashioned sense. If only it was something noble, like resolving to help bring world peace, or even just something personally beneficial, like that old chestnut, losing weight, which this belt-buster could stand to do.

It’s not, but at least it’s achievable: learn to make pastrami. I love the brined, seasoned and smoked beef brisket. It’s time to figure out how to make my own.

Kinda pedestrian, I know. My lame resolution got me wondering what other barbecue-crazed folks were resolving for the coming year. I asked a few of the top movers and shakers.

I will present their answers this week and next. Here’s the first batch:


Myron Mixon wants to smoke like dad. (Alex Martinez)

Heath Hall, president of the sauce and spice rub company Pork Barrel BBQ, co-owner of Pork Barrel BBQ restaurant in Alexandria and co-founder of Pork Barrel BBQ competition team. “Pork Barrel BBQ’s 2012 resolution is to repeat as grand champion of the Safeway National Capital Barbecue Battle and return to the Jack Daniel’s World Championship Invitational Barbecue contest.”


Craig Goldwyn wants to add smoke to griddled foods. (Craig Goldwyn)

Amy Mills, 17th Street BBQ heiress, owner of OnCue Consulting and co-author of “Peace, Love, and Barbecue.” “For my resolution, I chose three overarching words: create, prosperity and generosity. Create a new book and new ideas. Prosperity, in finances and relationships, for ourselves and our employees. Generosity in lifting up others which is a cornerstone of who we are and what we do.”


Elizabeth Karmel is thinking of duck. (Jamie Tiampo)

If you have barbecue resolutions, include them in the comments section below or send them to me at jimshahin@aol.com.

Send your tips, suggestions and opinions to jimshahin@aol.com and follow me on Twitter @jimshahin.

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