For years the word from the pit was that you couldn't cook classic barbecue at home. After all, what average rib lover has a pit, a smoker, or the supposedly essential 16 hours of cooking time.
We are here to share the happy news that great barbecue can be cooked at home. The secret? Time, yes — but only 4 to 7 hours — and careful tending of the fire. We've devised a two-step process that begins with smoking ribs or brisket for several hours — the charcoal kettle in your backyard will work, as long as it's at least 22 inches wide and has a lid — then wrapping them and continuing to cook at a low temperature until they're fork-tender. You need to feed the fire every 30 minutes with just enough briquets to maintain the temperature, but there is little other work involved.