Now that the long awaited summer has finally arrived, people think off barbeques. What can be more entertaining than cooking out-of-doors either on a charcoal-fired grill, or one using propane?
Charcoal–fired grills require more preparation and cleaning, but anything grilled on them tastes better and has a more succulent texture.
Here are a few tips you may want to keep in mind.
After every barbecue, use a wire brush to remove residue clinging to grill rods. Brushing the grill while it is hot removes burnt particles more effectively.
Before barbecuing, heat the grill well to create attractive “grill marks”, then rub the grill with a little oil. Wait for a few moments and then proceed to placing your steaks or hamburgers on the grill.
Cook steaks at 200 – 220 C (425 – 450 F), chicken ad hot dogs, hamburgers or sausages 50 F (20C) lower.
Overcooked meat becomes tough, dry, chewy, and tasteless. Medium-rare is fine for steaks; a little longer cooking for hamburgers will suffice to kill pathogenic bacteria. Cooking time depends much on the thickness of the food.
Avoid flare-ups by reducing oil usage and by rotating/replacing lava rocks. For regular charcoal, there is no need for such action.
Food to be grilled, including meat, should be at ambient temperature.
Use separate utensils for cooking and plating.
To avoid charcoalizing, brush barbecue sauce, (if using) on the meat just before finishing cooking.
Clean your barbecue after every use while it is still hot.
Relax and enjoy your experience. There is a lot of enjoyment in well-prepared barbecue food. Learn from your mistakes early in the season and try never to repeat any of the past.