FEATURED RANTS & RANDOMS

My New Project: Pit Magazine

May 6, 2017

Pit Magazine cover

Hello! I’m afraid this is one of those ‘sorry it’s been quiet around here’ openers. I’ve started a couple of new projects and it’s taken me a while to find my feet but now I’m back. The first thing I’m doing, of course, is telling you about one of the projects because what is this blog if not a space to promote the shit out of whatever I’ve been doing while I’ve neglected it?

Pit Magazine came about because I was approached by someone, totally out of the blue, called Holly. She wanted to make a magazine, she told me, and she thought I should be the person to do it with her and her partner, Doug. I thought about this for a little while and said, ‘ok’ because her e-mail had good vibes and when we met up, we got along well. If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the years it’s that the most important thing to remember when choosing colleagues is that you need to get along.

Food at Smokestak

Photo: Arnhel de Serra.

It was also a brilliant idea, of course. This is a magazine I would love to read if I found it on the shelf, which gives me hope that you will too. It’s about cooking over live fire, so it’s about barbecue all over the world (not just ‘low and slow’ in North America), from pigs in Polynesian fire pits to tiny skewers on grills in the night markets of Hong Kong.

We cover lots in the first issue, including serious stuff like the science behind woodsmoke and why it makes food taste so good, which is something I’d always been curious about. There are lovely recipes (not just meat) and there are some barbecue appropriate booze recommendations. Importantly, there’s also silly, fun stuff like the Instant Barbecue Challenge, in which we challenge a famous chef to make the best dish they can using only instant barbecues. You’ll find loads more too, of course… it’s 70 odd pages long.

Science of Wood Smoke

It’s also beautiful because Holly is an amazing designer, and some hugely talented photographers and illustrators have contributed. It’s actually a thing that can be distributed and sold because Doug is a brilliant managing editor, and hopefully I’ve made a solid start as the editor. Now, we’re looking for contributors to the second issue, so if you’re a writer with a compelling live fire story, don’t hesitate to get in touch via helen@pitmagazine.uk.

Finally, I’d be thrilled if you’d purchase a copy. No pressure, although, PLEASE BUY ONE. It’s a very reasonable £5 plus £2.50 postage via our lush, fluoro orange website and there’s plenty to read and look at, in the manner of a proper magazine (you’ll notice I’ve rammed a full three links to the web shop into this paragraph).

Ribs

Photo: Robert Billington.

We are incredibly proud of what we’ve made. It’s the product of lots of hard work and many meetings in the pub over pints and ‘crisp tapas’. Watching it come off the press brought a little tear to my eye. It’s an incredible experience to have complete control over something from start to finish (in contrast to writing a book) and I feel very excited and nervous putting it out there. I really hope you enjoy reading it, and FFS, if you spot a typo, just keep it to yourself, because I and several subeditors really do not want to know.

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14 Comments

  • Reply Marcus Bawdon May 7, 2017 at 9:07 am

    Best of luck with this, I’m very excited to see what you have created, and can’t wait to see this grow.
    I know from personal experience how much love, blood, sweat and smoke goes into pulling something like this off, so you have my full respect.
    Cheers
    Marcus

    • Helen Graves
      Reply Helen Graves May 7, 2017 at 9:24 am

      Thanks so much, Marcus! Yeah, it’s so much work but so satisfying to see it come together. See you soon, hopefully!

  • Reply Simon Dyer May 7, 2017 at 12:21 pm

    Congratulations!!! We needed something like this in the UK
    Good Luck!

    Cheers
    Si

  • Reply AR May 7, 2017 at 1:41 pm

    Wicked stuff! Looks really professional from the pictures above and, yes, you must be well excited seeing it ‘roll of the press’. As a life-long veggie I might not be your biggest subscriber, but all power to you. I hope it’s a success!

    • Helen Graves
      Reply Helen Graves May 7, 2017 at 1:48 pm

      Thank you! There’s veggie stuff too but of course, I understand a lot of it won’t be appealing to you.

  • Reply Alicia (Foodycat) May 8, 2017 at 10:12 am

    I was actually very surprised when I saw how reasonable the price was! I was anticipating £10 or more.

    Very good luck with it! Can’t wait to get my copy.

  • Reply msmarmitelover May 8, 2017 at 2:59 pm

    Good luck, a brilliant idea and hope to contribute some of my veggie recipes in the future. It’s often forgotten that vegetarians also love cooking on fire.

    • Helen Graves
      Reply Helen Graves May 9, 2017 at 5:45 pm

      Thanks Kerstin! And yes I agree – it’s so much about ‘grr man make fire and eat meat’ and we’re hoping to show the diversity of BBQ food.

  • Reply Jeff May 17, 2017 at 4:24 pm

    Any chance of making a pdf version available for sale as well? I’d love to have an electronic rather than paper copy.

    • Helen Graves
      Reply Helen Graves May 19, 2017 at 6:47 am

      Hi Jeff, not sure about this right now… in the future? You never know, but we are very much in love with our ink and paper at present.

  • Reply omar shah May 30, 2017 at 11:48 pm

    I’ve been obsessed about meat and fire since I was a kid. I would love to read a magasine about BBQing. Experimented with so many types coal cooking techniques. Made my own breeze block pit to roast a whole lamb, welded my own yakitori grill, bought numerous coal cooking contraptions to experiment with at the moment i’m trying to the master a komado grill. Feel in the UK we’re lagging behind but I’m sure we will catch up soon enough with the help of your publication. Involved with a couple restaurants that cook with coal. I find a great pleasure working with coal and being at one with the flames. You know if you know. Looking forward to articles discussing bincho, yakitori, jerking or even Filipino BBQ which is one my specialties 🙂 btw the art work looks dope! so much to explore. I’m definitely purchasing a copy! well done!

    • Helen Graves
      Reply Helen Graves May 31, 2017 at 7:37 pm

      Thank you so much for this lovely comment, Omar. You have totally understood what Pit is all about! I’m so pleased it’s speaking to you. Do let me know what you think when you have your hands on a copy.

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