Mark F. Sohn

Mark F. Sohn's Barbecue Equipment Advice


Tender meats are the result of slow cooking. However, favorable flavors and crisp textures follow from high heat. Even your grill can use an occasional boost.

SALAMANDER OR TORCH: To caramelize that sweet barbecue sauce consider using a handy electric salamander or plumber's torch. Both work quickly and both will gain attention from onlookers. The electric salamander is a heavy round cast-iron disc that gets red hot. Move it across items on your grill and they will brown in a moment.

If you don't have a salamander, try a torch. Go to your shop or garage and dust off the old plumber's torch or hand-held butane torch. Torches with flame spreaders are best. Check the canister for gas and light it. That beautiful blue flame will quickly toast bread, singe vegetables, caramelize sauces or crisp edges.

Grilling requires courage and skill, and I challenge you to demonstrate yours with salamanders or torches.

Recommendations from Mark F. Sohn

Poche's Meat Market is recommended for its variety and quality. Floyd Poche is an excellent homestyle producer.

Poche's Meat Market
Floyd Poche
3015-A Main Highway
Breaux Bridge, LA 70517
Phone: 318-332-2108; 800-3POCHES
Poche's Meat Market and Restaurant makes and sells pork cracklings, white pork sausage called boudin, and churice, an unsmoked marinated pork sausage. They also make andouille, tasso, crawfish boudin, chaudin and stuffed beef tongue. When the store opened in 1962, boudin and cracklin' were the only items served. Poche's cracklin' is what we call fried pork rinds, because it includes fat fibers, skin and meat. I use them like other cracklings. Floyd Poche supplements his sixteen-item price list with a booklet of recipes, a history of Poche's and descriptions of many of the products. Poche's does not accept COD orders and has a ten-pound minimum order.


Peter Pruden
P.O. Box 487
Smithfield, VA 23430
Phone: 800-628-2242, 804-357-2121
Fax: 804-357-5407
This company, formed in 1925, prepares and sells Amber Brand Genuine Smithfield Hams (aged 12 months) and Joyner's Red-Eye Country Style Hams (aged 70 to 90 days). Both styles are dry-cured, but Joyner's is less salty and less dry. Order a whole ham or as little as two pounds. The company boasts a beautiful thirty-two page color catalog and accepts major credit cards.