One of the best feelings in the world is having your friends over on a beautiful Sunday afternoon, enjoying a beer or a glass of red wine and cooking a barbecue, while sharing some stories. A grill will provide a way for you to enjoy delicious foods out in the yard or inside, in front of the TV.
Back in the days, barbecuing used to be pretty straight forward. However, grilling has turned into a regular form of art, as there are so many ways to prepare good food for everyone to enjoy. In today’s article, we are going to go over the basics that you need to know before you start grilling.
Firing up the Grill
For charcoal grills, you need to make sure that you have removed the debris that was left from the previous cooking. Not cleaning the grill will cause your current food to grill unevenly or even get burned. To light up a charcoal grill, you will need either briquettes or lump charcoal.
The latter type is nothing more than just burned down pieces of wood, while the former is made charcoal pieces combined with the binders and other products.
If you own a gas grill, then you already know that it operates very similar to a stove. Before you start grilling, you need to make sure that you have enough fuel at hand to keep the grill up and running for as long as you need to cook.
If your gas grill has multiple burners, then you will benefit from several cooking zones. This means that you can cook different types of food at different temperatures, all at the same time.
Cleaning Up the Grill
Trying to cook food on a dirty grill is both unsanitary and distasteful. Even if you are using a brand-new grill, you still need to clean it to make sure that you have removed any shipping or package residue that may have been left behind. The grate of your grill should be cleaned and oiled to make sure that nothing sticks to it.
Cleaning your grill after every use ensures that your food is tasty and that the grill itself will have a longer lifespan. Make sure that you don’t start cleaning your grill right after you have finished cooking, as the parts may be too hot, and you will end up getting burned. There are several types of gas grills that have their own cleaning setting. Even so, it will still require some manual washing.
In order to become the true barbecue master, you need to know the terminology associated with the different tools you need to prepare a successful meal.
In order to clean your grill, you will need a grill brush. You should always keep this at hand as it’ll motivate you to clean the grill after each use.
For grilling, you will also need a good pair of gloves because heat will cause major discomfort to your hands. There are very specific flame-resistant gloves that will absorb the heat and make it easier for you to use the grill.
Tongs are considered to be one of the most essential drilling accessories. Tongs make it easier for you to move food from one part of the grill to another. It’s great for turning hot dogs, sausage, vegetables and more.
Spatulas are also essential when grilling, because they help you flip the food without having to use any additional tools. Spatulas are ideal for cooking burgers or some other form of delicate food.
You should always have what is known as a “squirt bottle” near the grill. Basically, this is just a normal plastic bottle with a couple holes punctured in the cap. The squirt bottle is very useful in case the grill flame rises too high and you need something to keep it under control.
The more foods you cook inside your grill, the more essential a thermometer becomes. There are special thermometers that you stick inside your meat, to make sure you’ve properly cooked it.
Even if we’ve gone through the essentials of grilling, there are a lot more things that you should know in order to be fully prepared before firing up the grill. The first thing you need to master is patience. You won’t be able to make a good steak if the grill isn’t ready. A good chef always organizes his or her grill space in order to have all the ingredients needed at hand.
Another very important tip is to never leave the grill unsupervised, no matter how tempted you are to believe that you have things under control. Fire changes constantly and you should always keep an eye on it. If you need to take a bathroom break while the grill is running, ask someone else to keep their eyes on it while you are away.
It’s an obvious point, but is still important for us to mention. Grilling is ideal on those warm summer days, but that doesn’t mean you can’t grill all year round. If you live in a particularly rainy location, take a look at this guide over at Grill FAQ for information on gazebos that are purpose-designed for grilling.