Trip Tips Seared in Duck Fat on the Wyldside Grill
A recipe showing how to cook on the Rec Tec Wyldside Grill. This one is all about Tri-Tips using duck fat to sear. This recipe will also work if you have a Santa Maria Style Grill or even an Argentinian Grill.
In this recipe, we will be cooking and searing Tri-Tip roasts on the Rec Tec Wyldside Grill.The Wyldside grill is an Argentinian or some would say a Santa Maria style BBQ.The cooking fuel will be lump charcoal and hickory wood chunks.
We will need a very hot fire and it all starts with the BBQ Dragon Chimney Starter.First, we fill the starter all the way with lump charcoal.Then using a tumbleweed starter I light and then push the starter to the middle of the chimney using the access port on the side of the BBQ Dragon chimney.To help with the lighting, the Wyldside has vent holes that part powered by a fan, all around the base of the fire pit.
To help with the lighting, the Wyldside has vent holes that part powered by a fan, all around the base of the fire pit.Here I show the port and how I am pointing it towards the vents at the base.
We now turn on the fan to high and let the chimney and charcoal come up to temperature.As you can see the charcoal is well on its way. So while the charcoal is lighting we move into the kitchen to prepare our Tri Tips.
Here are the ingredients we will be using.Duck Fat and Montreal Steak Seasoning
And two 2.5 pound tri tip roastsA little trivia. The Tri Tip was created by Bob Schultz in Santa Maria, CA in the 1950s. Before Mr Schultz this cut of meat was used to make hamburgers.As you can see the roast has three points like a triangle. Hence the name Tri Tip.Before cooking, we need to remove external fat and silver skin.
Because this is not a big piece of meat I take small cuts until I can see the outside is mainly meat.
After trimming you can see that the outside of this roast should really sear well.Now it is time to season the meat. I put the meat into a foil pan so cleanup is easy.Now with the Montreal steak seasoning, I liberally put the seasoning on.Montreal Steal seasoning is your standard SPG, salt pepper and garlic with few extras added.With the meat totally cover in rub it is now off to the grill.
We now lay the coals in the middle of the fire pit.Now add the hickory wood chunksAs the wood chunks are added you can see the wood starts to smoke and the fire becomes very hot.Also, the vents and fan are adding even more oxygen to the fire.
We then add another layer of lump charcoal.The wood is already producing flame and now we want to move wood and coals so we have a focused cooking area.Using the rack we try and equally distribute the wood among the coals.
With coals and wood ready we now lower the grate into the grill.
Here you can see my favorite thermometer. Signals by Thermoworks.Here is the fire with both flame and smoke. Perfect for cooking these tri-tips.
In the grate, up position, the tri-tips are placed on the grate.The temperature probes from the signals thermometer are inserted into the two tri-tips.
The grate is then lowered to the point that the flames just kiss the meat but do not char the meat.The tri-tips are turned about ever 2 to 3 minutes. The tri-tips will be ready to sear when they reach an internal temperature of 120F.
Here you can see one tri-tip is at 118F and just about ready to pull.
With the one tri-tip done we move it off to the side, so it can stay warm.Then as the second tri-tip hits 120F we also move it off the heat too.I highly recommend some real good BBQ gloves like the BBQ Dragon Extreme Heat Resistant BBQ GlovesBy far the best BBQ gloves I have ever used.
Now it is time to get a large 15 inch cast iron skillet. This one is a Lodge.Now the duck fat.Why duck fat? It does not burn at high temperature so no free radicals so it stays healthy for you. It also has a neutral taste so it doe not change the taste of the meat.Pour duck fat into skillet and let the oil come up to temperature.
Coat the bottom of the skillet and the lower the grate so it is very close to the coals.Remove meat temperature probes and then start monitoring the skillet temperature using an inferred thermometer.
The correct searing temperature is 360F.Now do not do this unless you have extreme temperature gloves on.As I seared these tri-tips I noticed how the meat actually became more pliable and the color became even in color like a well-cooked steak.Total searing time was around 2 minutes
The nice thing about the gloves is you could actually feel when the meat was done. They looked perfect and it was time to pull.
Always cut against the grain and in a tri-tip that means you change the cut when you reach the middle.
Tri-tip cut easy and it tasted great.
So we start with the question? What is Santa Maria Style Barbecue?
Well, I will tell you what it is not Argentinian Barbecue or Asado.
The physical grills are similar but the barbecue that comes off those grills is very different.
Let’s start with where is Santa Maria valley.
It is positioned in a valley by the pacific coastline. 150 miles northwest of downtown Los Angeles and about 65 miles northwest of Santa Barbara.
The city is notable for its wine industry and Santa Maria-style barbecue. Sunset magazine called Santa Maria “The West’s Best BBQ Town
So what is so special about santa maria?
First the weather is perfect for year round growing of grass. The average highs in July are 74 F and the lows 54 F. In January the average highs are 66 F and the lows 39 F. The last time they had snow was 1945.
With ideal weather and location In the 1800s, the land was divided into large cattle ranches. The outlines of which still define roads and town boundaries today.
Santa Maria-style barbecue is thought to have evolved in the mid-1800s, in the valley of Santa Maria. Local ranchers would host Spanish-style feasts each spring for their vaqueros or cowboys, following big cattle roundups.
They barbecued meat over pits filled with hot coals of local red oak.
In 1931, the Santa Maria Club started a “Stag Barbecue. This was held on the second Wednesday of every month, with up to 700 patrons attending each event.
Over the years, the legend of Santa Maria Style Barbecue grew, turning a local treasure into a major attraction.
In those early days, the favored cut was top-block sirloin. The meat was rolled in a mixture of salt, pepper, and garlic salt before being barbecued. Cooked over the red oak coals, which contribute a smoky, hearty flavor.
In the 1950s, a local butcher named Bob Schutz perfected the tri-tip, a triangular bottom sirloin cut that quickly joined top-block sirloin as a staple of Santa Maria Style Barbecue.
President Ronald Reagan was an avid fan of Santa Maria Style Barbecue. Local barbecue chef Bob Herdman and his “Los Compadres Barbecue Crew” staged several barbecues for President Reagan, including five feasts on the South Lawn of the White House.
So what is a Santa Maria Style BBQ grill?
It is a grill that had a large pit area that’s primary fuel is wood or lump charcoal with wood.
It also has a grate that can be raised or lower depending on how much heat you want to apply to the food.
The other way the pitmaster can control temperature is just by using a shovel or rack to move the coals around.
The grill I have also has a rotisserie accessory that is connected to the grate allowing you to move the food on the rotisserie up and down giving you great control over the cook.
As you can see Santa Maria Style BBQ is a simple but effective way to prepare barbecue. It has a 200-year history and if you are a BBQ enthusiast like me it is one of the more enjoyable ways to prepare a great meal while showing off your true barbecue skills.
One of the nicest Santa Maria Grills on the market is The Puma.