Barbecue 101

Today’s News and Observer tells us about an exciting new offering at the N.C. Museum of History: Barbecue 101: A Southern Delicacy. The course is designed to introduce newcomers to the state to what is certainly the highest culinary achievement of North Carolinians. The course will be taught by Bob Garner, the reigning authority on North Carolina barbecue. His book North Carolina Barbecue: Flavored by Time is the authoritative history of barbecue in the state, and a comforting read for Tar Heels far from home. I relied on the recipe in Garner’s book to cook a pork shoulder in the alley behind the house I was living in in Cambridge, Massachusetts several years ago. The results were delicious — perhaps not quite up to par with Stamey’s, but a far sight better than anything you could get in New England.

Once Garner has finished educating the newcomers, I hope he’ll consider offering Barbecue 201 for those of us who have mastered the basics but still want to expand our knowledge and appreciation of the porcine offerings of our state.