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Friday, November 18, 2011

Moo + Oink = MOINK

About 3 weeks ago I received a phone call from fellow cook and good friend Greg Bane telling me that he was in the process of smoking some balls. After a few tasteless jokes and some chuckles, G informed me that he was speaking of "MOINK Balls" he had just thrown into his smoker. Needless to say, I had never heard of the term and still hadn't a clue as to what he was talking about. "MOINK what?", I asked. "What are those?" He filled me in and the rest is history.

MOINK Balls roots stem from a gathering of BBQ Brethren members Larry Gaian, Ron "Ron_L" Lewen and Neil "Nthole" Thole (see wikQUEpedia for details regarding the birth of MOINK Balls). Believe it or not, I had the fine pleasure of meeting Ron Lewen for the first time when he and his wife had graciously agreed to judge Glen Ellyn's 3rd Annual Backyard BBQ Cook-Off . Since then, I have also become a member of  The BBQ Brethren, an online community forum dedicated to the art of low and slow.  I highly recommend becoming a member if you're interested in BBQ.  The forum covers everything from the backyard to the American Royal and serves as not only a great source of information for the BBQ enthusiast, but as a fantastic source of cooking inspiration.
Back to MOINKS...a MOINK Ball fuses together the two most important proteins in BBQ. Simply put, a MOINK Ball is a BEEF meatball wrapped in PORK bacon and secured with a toothpick.  It is then smoked or grilled low and slow. Making MOINKS is a great way to flavor profile new rubs and sauces without spending a lot of dough and time on a rack of ribs, shoulder or brisket.

Paying tribute to my BBQ Brethren and my buddy G, I decided to make me some MOINKS. As you can see, the ingredient list is simple and does not require a fully stocked pantry. I started with beef meatballs, Smithfield-Double Thick Cut Bacon, Teddy Reader's Sweet Rib Rub, Whiteford's Sweet & Spicy BBQ Sauce and Smuckers Grape Jelly (combined equal parts jelly and BBQ sauce to make a glaze).

One of the first books I bought when I became interested in BBQ was "King of the Qs Blue Plate BBQ" by Teddy Reader. Contained within it are many awesome recipes including one for a sweet rib rub.  A few of the ingredients that make up the rub are garlic flake, brown sugar, ginger, red pepper flake, orange drink mix and coriander. I left the rub a bit more coarse than I would normally hoping to impart an impactful 1-2 flavor punch on these little guys.

I cut each strip of bacon in half placing a single beef meatball in the center.

I then wrapped the bacon around each meatball, stabbed it with a toothpick and dipped it in the sweet rib rub. Wow! Lookn' tasty already.

I fired up my Weber Kettle One-Touch Gold using indirect heat and two chunks of Pecan. These bad boys will be cooked at 250 degrees - low and slow.

After about an hour, the bacon has started to render and is smelling absolutely fantastic!

Final product...succulent, sweet and tangy MOINKS.  Oh, and what more appropriate than a Beefeater to compliment my snack. Yes, it's the start of a great weekend indeed. Happy Friday!


  1. HI Jennifer,

    I was notified that you had posted a comment here, but do not see your comment. I apologize.

    Your question was:

    Can you give me a recommendation of a good local place to buy about 100lbs of good quality pork shoulder? We are going to make some sausage and I remember reading about a local vendor being touted on the GE Backyard blog.



    Of course, I can. You must be referring to Bubba's Berk's. I bloggged about him a few months ago and highly recommend his pork. It's the best! In fact, I just cooked one of his loins which I'll be blogging about soon.

    Contact information for Bubba's can be found at the following link.

    Or, at the lower right-hand corner of this page is a link called "Older Post", click on two times and scroll down the page. You'll find Bubba's info there too.

  2. take the loin about 6.5lbs cut 1.5inch for boneless chops. grill or bake. i do a greek seasoning in a cast iron skillet to seal then bake. also try stuffing them.too good

  3. This sounds real good. Nothing like stuffed chops. Got a good recipe? And, I've been using my cast iron skillet a lot more lately. I love its even heat distribution and browning effect.


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