The grilling season is under way, and there are a few important things to keep in mind. There are charcoal and gas grill experts that swear by each. The charcoal grill is great for getting a smoky flavor to the food. However, a gas grill does not emit harmful carbons and charcoal to the food and easier for cleanup.
Preparing The Grill
- Make sure there is enough propane or charcoal to heat the grill at full capacity.
- When the grill is hot, scrub the grate with a wire brush to take care of debris and ensure a clean surface.
- Folded paper towels dipped in Canola or vegetable oil run over the grate a few times prevents food sticking.
- Have a working thermometer for inside the grill to determine the cooking temperature. Most gas grills have them attached.
- Marinades are the best way to preseason vegetables and meat before grilling. An acid, oil mixture of 1:3 ratio is best and add seasoning to taste. Lemon, wine or vinegar makes a good acid choice. Plastic zip bags are great marinade containers and just toss in the trash when finished.
- When ready to place meats on the grill, make sure to pat dry to ensure not steamed on the grill.
- Vegetables grill well in a grill basket, on a skewer or in foil. When cooking on skewers place different vegetables on different skewers. Keep the same vegetable on one skewer and another on a different skewer to ensure that cooking time is consistent.
Direct Heat vs Indirect Heat
- On a charcoal grill, arrange charcoals so it is hotter on one side than the other is.
- A gas grill usually has 2 to 4 burners that can be set at different temperatures. Set one side lower that the other.
- Any food that takes less than 20 minutes to cook is cook on the direct heat for quick searing and grilling. Steaks, smaller portions of meat and vegetables work well on direct heat.
- Indirect heat is a great way to slow cook whole roasts, chicken etc.
- When you are adding a barbecue sauce wait until the last 5 minutes of cooking then brush on turn brush again. Flip once more then place on the indirect side to set the sauce.
- Indirect heat is also a good place to put food cooked on direct heat and needs to stay hot until you are ready to pull off the grill.
Let food rest for 15 minutes so the juices cool and set inside the food instead of running out and making food dry once cut.
Enjoy the weather, family, friends and grilling. Nothing represents the outside pleasure of summer as much as a great outdoor grilled dinner.
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