Cooking may not be rocket science, but there is one branch that gives out advanced degrees—barbecue. Chris Lilly earned his MBBQ (Master’s of Barbecue) and reached the rank of pitmaster.
By day, you’ll find him overseeing the cookers at Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q in Decatur, Ala. In his spare time, he wins barbecue championships with his pulled pork.
Lilly spent years in the charcoal mines to reach the top of the profession, but you can graduate to pitmaster of your own backyard by learning a few basics, one of which is spice rubs. “Adding flavor, even if it’s as basic as salt, pepper and garlic, is a barbecue tradition,” says Lilly. His All-Purpose Dry Rub is great on everything, including ribs.
By Tamar Haspel, a writer in New York City.