Top Accessories For The Grill

grill_accessoriesHaving the proper accessories for a grill will not only make the whole process easier but it will also provide an element of necessary safety.   There are many thrifty gadgets designed for barbeques like the chicken on a can accessory that not only provides a tasty bird but does offer a safety net for this type of grilling method.  There are also a few things a new grill needs in order to ensure a long lasting life for successful grilling every time.  These are just some suggestions to improve your cooking experience as well as extend the longevity of a barbeque.

For the most part, your barbeque will be outside in an open environment so a proper grill cover should be the second thing to think of buying.  The first, of course, is the grill.  Be sure to look for weather resistant covers that can stand up to all elements of weather.  Also, find one that is easy to clean with a garden hose.  Taking care of the accessories is just as important as the grill itself.  Lastly, look for a grill cover that will not blow off in severe weather conditions and look for one that can be secured at the base for a secure seal; this will prohibit dust and debris getting inside the barbeque which can cause rust.

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Super Bowl Foods On The Grill

BBQ-Chicken-WingsSuper Bowl Sunday is the biggest game of the year that also signifies the gathering of friends and family with food as the main attraction.  This iconic game day is known as the seventh largest grilling day of the year and the most poplar winter day to break out the grill.  The best thing about  grilling on game day is that most foods benefit from preparation methods prior to cooking on the barbeque and the more you are prepared in advanced then the more time you will have to watch the game.

On average, people will consume over 90 million pounds of chicken wings, 65 million pounds of avocados that will be used for guacamole dip, and 14,500 tons of chips. Try taking a healthier approach toward popular  Super Bowl foods by choosing your barbeque versus traditional cooking methods like deep frying.  This can also help the dreaded clean up too.  No greasy spills, excess dishes to scrape clean, or running up the heating bill.  Instead, allow the kitchen to be a gathering place for guests who need a break from the game.

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When and Why to Brine Your Meat

Brining-meatBrining meat is a great way to add or enhance flavors, increase tenderness, and reduce the cooking time of some of your favorite grill items. If done correctly, the age-old process of brining can really be an asset to your grilling experience.  Brining in general is very simple. However, there are a few intricacies to the process that vary depending on the type of meat you are using and your desired outcome.

I always like to have a basic understanding of what is actually happening to the food I am cooking when using a method like brining.  With brining, you are essentially submerging your meat in a solution that has a higher sodium concentration than the meat. Through the chemical process known as osmosis, the meat absorbs the brine and the salt begins to break down the meat’s fiber proteins creating a tenderer end product.

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Tailgate Grilling

wilmingtonAs super bowl approaches true gamers and sports fans begin to prepare for the party, the tailgating party.  The only thing better than a super bowl party is a tailgating party full of hotdogs, chicken wings, sliders and touchdowns. The sport of grilling is among us and I’m here to present some handy grilling assistants to make your tailgating party a success.

Let’s begin with the O Grill, portable yet powerful.  Whether in your backyard or the stadium parking lot, you will be prepared to grill in style with this carry along gas grill.  Although compact, the O Grill still packs a big grilling punch. The grill is designed with a cast iron & porcelain–enamel heat safe grid and coupled with a grease pan for when those burgers get a bit too juicy. Another convenient feature of the grease pan is the easy clean up, which will be a key feature when you’re grilling on the go. The retractable legs and ergonomic handle make portability even easier. It doesn’t take up the entire trunk, so you will have space left over for the extra add-on’s such as the foldable compact docking station that make setting up a breeze. This let’s you can focus on the score and not where you’re going to set-up your grilling station. In addition, with six colors to choose from you can represent your favorite team color while preparing your winning tailgate recipes.

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Techniques for Juicy Meats

Main 1 Fire Magic GrillAre you tired of eating meat that has the same consistency as shoe leather? Do you have to drink a glass of water to choke down every bite? If your answer is yes to either of these questions, then you’re eating dry meat. Good meat should never be dry unless you’re on a camping trip, and even then there’s a cure for uncle Jerry’s dry mouth jerky. So what’s the cure? Glad you asked. Simply put, it’s important to match the correct equipment and techniques with the types of food you like to cook. Top restaurants don’t typically use 2 star utensils to cook 5 star dishes, they buy quality and they buy once. In this article I will point out the type of equipment needed to create juicy grilled foods, juicy rotisserie foods, and juicy smoked foods.

When it comes to grilling juicy food most people do not have trouble with foods that have a high fat content such as beef hamburgers, sausages, and chicken thighs. Backyard cooks usually struggle with leaner meats such as fish, chicken breast, and pork chops. In order to consistently cook juicy restaurant quality meat, you need a Lynx grill. Lynx grills use radiant heat technology, which allows the grill to get hot without bombarding your food with loads of dry air. Most of the other lower end grills have a direct heat cooking system, uneven heat distribution, and you will probably get lots of flare ups. A poorly manufactured grill with an outdated grilling system means you will be playing musical chairs with your food to avoid hot spots and your lean meats will dry out faster than a speeding bullet. A few other manufactures that have the latest and greatest in grilling technology for keeping your favorite foods juicy are Twin Eagles and Fire Magic’s all infrared grill.

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A Low Calorie New Year

Pizza-ovenAh Christmas, a holiday well known for it’s indulgences, and with Thanksgiving still in the rear view it’s most common for people to notice their resemblance to old Saint Nick. Looking ahead, let’s start the New Year’s off right with a resolution to blow the dust off of that gym membership.

Most people like to find ways to diet without surrendering their favorite dish completely; pizza tends to be the most addictive. Many dieters find it difficult to jog by a pizza parlor without stopping. Those that have the will power to jog by find themselves digging deep into their bank accounts to purchase brick oven pizzas, which believe it or not, can fit into any diet plan without weighing it down. Pizzas baked in those fiery brick pizza ovens have less fat and therefore less calories, unfortunately their prices can’t be negotiated. Using the same baking techniques at home can keep both calories and expenses low. Let’s compare a few to give you a view of the options.

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Grill Safety Tips

grill_safetyWith the Holidays quickly approaching, I thought it would be appropriate to take a moment to remind everyone to be safe with his or her travels and activities this season. With that in mind, here are some guidelines to make sure you are exercising caution and utilizing standard safety measures when grilling.

The first thing you should do with your grill is read the owner’s manual. No matter how familiar you think you may be with grilling, if you are getting a new grill, do yourself a favor and flip through the manual. New features and technologies are constantly becoming available, so it is important to familiarize yourself with your grill in the event something goes wrong.

The next thing that you should be very watchful of is your fire. It should go without saying that fire can be extremely dangerous, and if misused can cause severe damage, injury, and even death. Have a water sprayer handy to help reduce flare ups from grease, and also be sure to have a fire extinguisher or garden hose readily available in case your fire gets out of hand.

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Grilled Duck: A Great Holiday Meal Prepared on the Grill

grill_duckEvery family has it’s own staples when it comes to food around the holidays. For me, one of the things I look forward to the most is a nice meal centered around a well prepared duck. Most people tend to think of roasting as the best way to cook a duck, however there are several ways to enjoy a duck cooked outside on your grill that can produce the same, if not better, results.

One of the most important things to keep in mind is that not all poultry is created equal. Although there are obvious similarities, duck just like chicken or turkey has it’s own methodology of cooking. So, if you try to prepare a duck as you would a chicken or turkey you will not get the desired results.

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An Introduction to the Art of Plank Grilling

plank_grillingIf you are using a conventional gas, charcoal, or electric grill and want to infuse your food with a smoky flavor, then you have probably been advised to use woodchips.  Woodchips are great in their own right, however there is another, often over looked, method that produces great results called plank grilling.

Originally used by Native Americans to cook game and fish over an open flame, plank grilling is by no means a new method. The most commonly used types of wood are alder, cedar, maple, and oak. Other types of wood such as apple, cherry, hickory and mesquite also can be used for plank grilling. Wooden grill planks can be purchased at a relatively low cost, but if you decide to be a renaissance man and make your own just be sure that you use untreated wood. Wood from a lumber yard or hardware store may have chemicals that could potentially be hazardous to your health.

It is extremely easy to use a wooden plank for grilling. In fact, the most difficult part is probably matching up which foods go with what types of wood.  For example, alder and cedar are well known as a great pairing with salmon. Maple has a sweet flavor so it’s known to go well with poultry and pork. Oak is said to go best with lamb or beef. As always, I encourage people to experiment with their cooking so feel free to try different combinations to find one that you enjoy the best.

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How to Make a Pizza on the Grill

pizza_grillPizza is one of the most commonly consumed meals for the average American. However, when it comes to using a grill, it seems that most people shy away from the idea of grilling their pizza. Whether you think it is too complicated, or you feel you won’t get your desired results, both of those assumptions are way off when it comes to preparing a pizza on the grill. In fact, if done right, pizza can come out extremely well when cooked over an open flame to the point where you may be turning towards your grill for your next homemade pizza.

If you have ever made a good pizza, then you know that it’s all about using good ingredients, and this of course starts with the dough. If you have the time and recourses I always recommend making your own pizza dough, however you can still achieve very good results using a store bought pizza dough. If you are using store bought dough, steer away from that stuff in a can, or anything that has been previously frozen, as you will need hearty dough with a lot of elasticity for the grill. Most grocery stores sell fresh pizza dough in the bakery section. Once you have settled on the dough you will use, and gathered your other ingredients, the hard part is over and you can start grilling your pizza. If you are planning on grilling any meats or vegetables as toppings, then you will need to do that first as the dough cooks rather quickly on the grill compared to a normal oven.

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