Monthly Archives / April 2013


The One-7: Elizabeth Karmel

Elizabeth Karmel shows off a tray of succulent spare ribs at Hill Country Barbeque Market.

Elizabeth Karmel shows off a tray of succulent spare ribs at Hill Country Barbeque Market. Photo by Ken Goodman

I met Elizabeth almost 10 years ago and she has become a treasured friend, bound by the love of barbecue and cowboy boots. She’s the culinary mastermind behind Hill Country Barbecue Market and Hill Country Chicken and the author of a trio of books about grilling and barbecue.

In addition to the famous PB&J Cupcake she invented for Hill Country, she also developed the often-imitated ergonomically designed silicone grill brush and mop, along with a variety of other clever and well-designed grilling accessories, all available at

Here’s Elizabeth’s take on the One-7:

1. Travel destination: Paris

2. Cut of meat to cook: Bone-in pork butt

3. Favorite pie: my grandmother’s coconut meringue

4. Best gift received: the “love of food” from my parents and grandparents

5. I admire: Steve Jobs 

6. BBQ joint I’d like to visit: Skylight Inn

7. Words to live by: Don’t let the facts get in the way of a good story! 

Elizabeth’s website is a treasure trove of recipes and information. Buy her books here.

The One-7 features our friends and partners and gives a little insight into their worlds.


Reading: Fresh off the Boat

EddieHuang_BookCoverThank you, Eddie Huang, for sending me a copy of Fresh off the Boat.

I met Eddie and his charming girlfriend last fall at the Southern Foodways Alliance symposium. He spoke about his unconventional life experiences within an immigrant family and the barbecue he ate and made while growing up in Florida and during his early years in Manhattan. We spent time gathered around Pat Martin’s pit and shared swigs of whiskey and stories about Sonny’s Bar-B-Q. His childhood, family life, and the experiences that formed his perspective and persona are fascinating.

Eddie Huang and Pat Martin

Pat Martin and Eddie Huang


I’ve always felt my group of friends is fairly diverse, but until now I didn’t know anyone whose formative years were quite like this. The anchor of his story and our common language is, of course, food.

One of my favorite passages:

“I realized that day, it’s the simple things in life. It’s not about a twelve-course tasting of unfamiliar ingredients or mass-produced water-added rib-chicken genetically modified monstrosity of meat that makes me feel alive. It’s getting a bowl of food that doesn’t have an agenda. The ingredients are the ingredients because they work and nothing more. These noodles were transcendent not because he used the best produce or protein or because it was locally sourced, but because he worked his dish. You can’t buy a championship.”

If you’re interested in food and how it informs much of who we are, you’ll want to read this book. Order your copy here.