Retired LA Times food writer and food historian Charles Perry explains how the 19th century Los Angeles practice of earth-pit barbecuing whole bulls became a culinary craze for settlers who saw the eating of the bull’s head as a wild west delicacy, and how the rise of Hollywood changed the practice into what we know today as the backyard barbecue.

“People had this obscure sense that they had been having too much fun in the 20s and they now were being punished and so everything became suave and elegant and the idea of being able to invite people as if on the spur of the moment for a steak was very appealing.”


Ox Tales is produced by Anna Sigrithur and edited by Naomi Duguid and Fiona Sinclair with production help by Thomas Krause. 

Music by Thomas Krause and Ava Glendinning. 

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