BEARD FACT NO 1: IN THe middle ages touching a man's beard was incredibly offensive and in extreme cases often lead to a duel.
Nowadays I find that people just seem to come up to me and stroke my face like I’m some sort of cat. The truth is, having a beard isn’t just all lollipops and rainbows, it’s a full time job. My beard has a life of its own and needs to be tamed, I am talking washed and blow dried every morning or I will look like a hobo.
Apart from the odd Movember where I would grow an awesome “soup strainer” in aid of raising awareness for prostate cancer and the one clipper malfunction causing me to have a clean shave I have been a bearded villain for many a year now and I’m often chuffed when strangers comment about the “mightiness” of my beard whilst out and about with the missus.
Blokes with beards have an appreciation for other blokes with beards. It’s like an unspoken nod of superiority to others knowing that we’re in the Club who can actually grow a beard in the first place. Truth is we are superior. Fact.
BEARD FACT NO 2 Ancient Indians thought it was essential to growing long beards to show that they were wiser and should be respected.
On meeting Joe and Ed our initial conversation was about beards but quickly progressed to our love of BBQ. Well we was in the Riverside Garden Centre at the time drooling over various models in the BBQ Disneyland which is the Riverside BBQ School.
It started as a drunken conversation, relative strangers planning a BBQ cook off, but there we were some three weeks later, BBQ forks at the ready, preparing for our duel.
Joe is a relative newcomer to the BBQ scene and we met at one of Marcus Bowden’s cookery classes. Joe is not your typical throw a burger on the grill type of guy and puts in a hell of a lot of research into flavour profiles and has a keen eye for presentation. Joe chose the Traeger Timberline 850 to start his grill, finishing on the Weber Summit. His offerings to BeardyQ included:
Bacon wrapped Frankfurters dusted with Big Poppa’s Jallelujah Seasoned Jalepeno Salt.
Baby Porchetta pork fillet stuffed with garlic and herbs, wrapped in streaky bacon.
Ed has found his passion for outdoor grilling again recently after falling in and out of love of cooking, it looks like he has it back with a bang. This is evident in his cooking as he really does love some chilli heat in his food. Ed's weapon of choice was the Traeger Pro34 and finishing with the Weber Summit. Ed's offerings to the BeardyQ table:
Hot wings with John B Beta Tropical Fire Sauce
Chicken lollipops with Firefly Barbecue rub and Stockyard Sauce
BEARD FACT NO. 3 The average beard will trap a pint and a half of beer every single year.
Three beards, three barbecues, three bears... what were the highlights?
Joe’s frankfurters were epic, definitely worth considering this little gem instead of sausages for your next hot dog. And wrapped in bacon? Genius.
As for the baby porchetta this was a delicate little treat which managed to carry off double the flavour due to being half the size of a standard porchetta cut. Good for the waist line too! Joe has promised something equally as epic for BEARDYQ#2, seeing as he thinks himself as a bit of a Heston B I'm pretty damn sure that some gastronomic indulgences await us!
Ed’s wings were phenomenal, beautifully cooked and seasoned, a bloody fireball for the mouth though, have a glass of milk handy! He had both joe and I debating how something that hurt so much could taste so good. The wings were perfectly complimented by a sticky sweet chicken lollipop which had been perfectly trimmed... knowing from past experience trimming drums is an absolute ball ache so top marks to Ed for effort and presentation!
BEWARE OF THE WINGS!
I was late to the party with the picanha late to the table which gave me the perfect opportunity to showcase slicing through a beautiful piece of meat. I’m particularly fond of serving this up at food gatherings as due to the way it is cooked guests are able to choose their preferred finish from rare to medium rare depending on how close to the skewer. None for the well done possy though, you’re not welcome at beardyQ.
Bearing in mind that we were just three blokes with beards who happened to meet at a garden centre whilst ogling over barbecues it just goes to show what a mutual respect for the Q can do. I can honestly say that BeardyQ was a mammouth success with plenty of fun and full stomachs for all. Keep your mince pies peeled for BEARDYQ#2.