Well, I certainly don't recomend this for everyone, but I experiment because about 6 months ago I and my family moved to a 3rd world country in the middle of Africa. After that, experimenting is required. Why? Because nothing is the same here. BBQ is not a cooking style that is done here. Sure, nearly the entire nation cooks outside over a fire, but they boil or steam almost every bit of it.
So that leaves me creating most everything I need.
Challenges (stuff I can't buy):
Briquettes. I buy homemade lump from yards along the road.
BBQ sauce. Have to make my own.
Ketchup currently. All the stores are out until a shipment comes from S Africa.
Corn syrup, but I can get sugar cane syrup (stronger flavor)
Tomato sauce, paste only
Any smoking wood you've ever used (no hickory, mesquite, oak, alder, pecan, maple, apple, etc.) as they don't grow here.
Cheese. Ugandans don't like dairy products so they don't sell it.
Not practical (stuff too expensive to buy on a missionary's budget):
Factory BBQ unit. Hibachi's are over $100, Small Webers $500 (the big ones are expensive
), so I had a local welder make the BBQ barrel equivelant of Frankenstein for about $75. Picts will follow.
BBQ tools. Tried to get some tongs, over $25 each
. I'll use a fork and burn my hand, thanks. Rib racks are about $50 each, but ribs are more expensive than tenderloin anyway.
Bacon. I can get back bacon for only $8 lb. I don't use it often
Most western fruits (grapes, berries, cherries, pears,). I saw pomagranits the other day for $22 EACH! Apples and oranges are exceptions. Granny Smiths and seeded oranges are available.
Opportunities (stuff I can experiment with):
Beef is the cheap meat. Tenderloin is about $2.25 lb. To make up for that a scrawny chicken is $7.
Fruit markets you can't imagine. The pinapple and bananas were picked this morning. Those pinapple are less than 25 cents a lb. I can buy fruit you've never even heard of, let alone cooked with and eaten. The avacados are so big the pits are larger than most whole avacados in the States.
I can buy fresh cut sugar cane from walking vendors while I wait in traffic.
I can smoke with any tropical hardwood you've ever heard of (and some you haven't). I just need to figure out what works 'cuz most of it isn't in any grill books.
Nobody here (except fellow Americans) has ever tasted BBQ so mine actually is
the best they've ever eaten.
I think I've got a lot of fun ahead of me.