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Adam Perry Lang, the author of Charred & Scruffed (R311, kalahari.com) and a frequent competition-barbecue champion, will shorten the distance between you and topnotch braai
Tender ribs and chicken usually require slow braaing over indirect heat. Lang’s method yields the same results faster by grilling over direct heat. Fire up your braai and follow his lead
1. Start with a Spice Rub
If you slap a sweet sauce onto raw meat before you start grilling, the sugars will end up scorching, says Lang. Instead, start by seasoning the meat with his Four Seasons rub.
One Rub to Rule Them All
Adam Perry Lang uses his Four Seasons rub as a base for almost all of his barbecue. Start with his basic recipe and tweak the flavour by adding your favourite spices, like chilli powder, oregano, cumin – even cinnamon. To make enough for the entire summer, whisk together 1 cup kosher salt, 2 tbsp freshly ground black pepper, 2 tbsp garlic salt, and 1 tsp ground cayenne.
2. Even Out the Heat
To cook tougher cuts (such as ribs and chicken thighs) to juicy tenderness, you need to slow down the aggressive force of direct-heat grilling. To do this, Lang flips his rib racks every 15 minutes, controlling the build-up of heat and helping the pork become tender. Likewise, cooking dark-meat chicken thighs in a liquid-filled baking dish right on the grill moderates the heat and helps the meat cook evenly.
3. Finish with a Glaze
Once the meat is tender, the next step is to build a glaze. Resist the urge to brush on a sweet sauce right before flipping the meat, Lang says – you’ll just end up burning the sauce as it drips onto the fire. Instead, brush it on after flipping while the surface is sizzling. Use several thin layers rather than a single heavy coat. The sauce will caramelise right on the meat as it cooks, gradually building a rich, sticky glaze.