Dr. BBQ is back on the bookshelves with yet another new book this month. Ray Lampe - aka Dr. BBQ - brings forth another excellent book with his latest offering, "Ribs, Chops, Steaks & Wings: Irresistable Recipes for the Grill, Stovetop and Oven" ($19.95, Chronicle, 132 pp.).
Lampe takes a bit of a different tack with this book, going away from a broad selection of recipes to this time narrowing his focus to the four meats in the title. The result is great attention to detail that spotlights Lampe's creativity and skills. Add to that a big commitment from the publisher on this book, springing for loads of full-color pictures and splashy graphics. It really is a beautiful book.
As an aside, Ray Lampe is one of those great people in barbecue (and there are lots!) who has seen hard work, dedication and a great idea pay off. This is his fifth book and finding a major publisher who will take a chance on your for even one book is a big deal. I still remember when I first heard about "Dr. BBQ" in a random post on Ray Basso's The BBQ Forum web site. That was back when I was working for a sports television cable network and it just so happened that I had a business trip that put me on the road between Orlando and Tampa and I'd be passing through Lakeland just about lunchtime (well, it was really more like late breakfast). I found Ray in a trailer on a vacant gravel lot, tending to a cornucopia of barbecue delectables in a pellet cooker, out of which he was selling his wares to the locals. He invited me in and we chatted for almost an hour - until the lunch rush started - and he sent me away with a clamshell stuffed full of some of the best tasting barbecue I've ever enjoyed. I even had to insist on paying for it (I was on expenses after all). I really enjoyed meeting Ray that day and I've been glad to see the great success he's enjoyed since then. Heck, these days he's rubbing elbows with the likes of Justin Timberlake in his role as the executive chef at Timberlake's New York City barbecue joint. I wonder if he still has that trailer and pellet cooker?