How I Gather

Bringing people together around a table is our greatest passion in life and we believe food is one of the most powerful tools for connection. In our series, How I Gather we go behind the scenes with our favorite foodies to see how they do it. See All

When Bon Apetit dubbed an East Austin treasure “the best BBQ in America,” the whole city kind of freaked out a bit. Franklin Barbecue instantly became a household name, and if you hadn’t already had the brisket there, you’d best reevaluate your priorities. Fast forward a year-and-a-half, and the geniuses at KLRU have teamed up with Aaron Franklin himself to produce an 8-part web series that explains the process — beginning to end — of making delicious barbecue in your very own backyard. So we’ve been following along as Franklin’s talked in depth about finding your meat, buying and modifying a smoker and picking out wood, and have loved every minute of it. And then the inconceivable happened: an invitation into the home kitchen of the Franklins as they prepare and serve their Thanksgiving dinner, and film it all for the Thanksgiving segment of “BBQ with Franklin.” Doesn’t it feel like all is right in the world when you discover that someone you admire also happens to be a wonderfully nice and down-to-earth person? Aaron and his wife Stacy may just be the two best people you could find yourself spending T-day with, and we had so much fun hanging out with them and the KLRU crew. If you should be so bold, head over to watch and learn how to smoke a turkey, and be sure to click through here for the recipe to one of Stacy’s signature sides, all captured by our very own Chelsea.

Aaron and Stacy moved into their new East Austin home just a week before this shoot. Most importantly, the kitchen and outdoor patio were fully set up and functioning — and what more do you need when it comes to fall entertaining?

Brining a turkey overnight is super important if you want to really pack in the flavor and moisture. This simple brine was made with 2 cups kosher salt, 2 cups white sugar, and enough cold water to cover the bird.

After soaking for a day, Aaron rubbed the turkey down with black pepper and kosher salt.

Then it’s off to the smoker!


Stacy made a beautiful grilled green bean and shishito pepper salad, and was sweet enough to share the recipe with us…

Get the recipe for Aaron and Stacy’s Green Bean and Shishito Pepper Salad here

Get the recipe for Aaron and Stacy’s Green Bean and Shishito Pepper Salad here

What else but Texas brews on ice for a cool refreshment?

Stacy gathered natural elements like pomegranates, pine cones and pecans from around their backyard and arranged them on a serving platter. A few found sprigs of greenery tucked into the mix made for a perfectly colorful and seasonal centerpiece.

The table was set simply, rightfully letting the food shine.

… anyone else feeling inspired to host a BBQ Thanksgiving?

Head over to Go Forth Creative to view more of Chelsea’s work.

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