Santa Maria style barbeque is a cooking style that is unique and famous for grilling over coals of red oak wood. Red oak is a fragrant wood that imparts its own special flavor. Tri-tip is usually the meat of choice for this style of barbeque. We have acquired some chunks of red oak from ‘John’s Wood’ and a tri-tip from the ‘U.C. Davis Meat Lab’. We will give our version of this cooking style. Traditionally a fire of red oak wood is burned down to coals. Charcoal and red oak chunks will replicate this process. A medium charcoal fire was built and the wood chunks were placed on top. The grill cover was used to keep the wood from burning.
Our trip-tip was marinated in our special rub for several hours. A mixed grill of home grown delicata, gray zucchini squash and marinated portabella mushrooms will be a good canvas for the smoke of the red oak. The smoke from the red oak has a beautiful bouquet of sweet smelling smoke. This is my kind of air freshener. In no time at all we had a Santa Maria meal to enjoy. We threw in an artichoke and enjoyed a meal flavored with sweet red oak smoke. I think they are on to something in Santa Maria.