Summertime… The weather is warmer, the days are longer and the smell of BBQ is definitely in the air! We are officially living the BBQ lovers’ favourite time of the year!
Though enjoyable, grilling can be quite a challenge! How much do you know about those little tips and tricks that will save you from trouble and turn you into the “Master of the Grill” in the eyes of your family and friends? Hmmm…
If you’re not sure about your answer, worry no more! We have compiled 6 awesome BBQ tips and tricks that will help you impress everyone with your unbelievable grilling skills! Are you ready to grill?
1. Getting Started – Your First BBQ
Before you use your BBQ for the first time, you need to clean it! No, we don’t mean “get a bucket of soapy water and get started”. Cleaning the BBQ for the first time is all about fire and flames! So, light up the fire and let it take care of any remains of the manufacturing process. In 45-60 minutes, your BBQ will be ready for the first grill!
2. Grill the beef like a pro
Rare, medium or well done? If you’re grilling on a gas BBQ – whether it’s a kettle grill, a 2 burner BBQ or a larger one – just ask your guests how they like their beef and work your magic! Here are the ideal beef temperatures, according to the experts:
- Rare: 49°C - 51°C
- Medium – Rare: 55°C - 57°C
- Medium: 60°C - 63°C
- Medium – Well: 65°C - 69°C
- Well Done: 70°C
3. Give your food some extra flavor with wood chips
Are you grilling over charcoal? Well, here’s a little – extra tasty – secret: Add some fruit tree wood chips to your charcoal and give a flavorful twist to your gastronomical masterpiece! So what will it be? Apple, cherry, something else?
4. Boost your meal’s flavor with awesome marinades
Rule Number 1: Learn before you marinate.
Rule Number 2: Get your fork and poke some holes into the meat before you start marinating. This way, your meat can absorb the marinade more easily and become even more delicious!
We’re here mostly to help you with Rule Number 1. But hey, if you invite us over to enjoy your juicy steaks, we will gladly help you with Rule Number 2 as well!
So what are the key ingredients of a good marinade? Well, experts say that there are three key ingredients: an acid, an oil and flavors. If you manage to find the right balance between these three, then you will master the art of marinating!
Your acid could be wine, lemon, orange, vinegar, soy sauce or even pineapple juice. When it comes to oil, you can go for olive oil, but you can also try sesame or avocado oil. Whichever you choose, rest assured that it will help reveal the aromatic flavors of your herbs and spices! And now the… tasty part: the flavors! First of all, salt! It’s a basic ingredient in marinades, not just as a taste booster itself, but also as a facilitator for the meat to absorb the marinade. Herbs and spices, such as cumin, oregano, paprika or thyme, are also key flavors for a finger-licking good BBQ. Other flavors used in awesome marinades are mustard, garlic, ginger, or even sweeteners such as sugar, honey, maple syrup and more! Our personal piece of advice: Learn the basics, and then… improvise! Combine knowledge with imagination to make wonders!
Tip: Marinate pork and beef for up to 24 hours.
Extra tip: Marinate chicken for up to 3 hours.
5. Grill your vegetables
No, it’s not all about meat! Vegetables can become amazingly tasty on your grill too! Before throwing them on the grill, don’t forget to toss them with a little oil, to avoid serving dried out veggies to your guests. Keep in mind that thin and tender vegetables cook quickly, but the thicker and denser ones need more time, so it’s better to cook them on a cooler part of your grill, to avoid burning them on the outside and keeping them raw on the inside. Cut your root vegetables, such as potatoes, into disks or chunks, for better results!
Tip: You can try to dress your vegetables with vinaigrette or balsamic vinegar once they’re cooked, to add some extra flavor!
6. Meat smoking
Are you a fan of BBQ Smokers? Well, we don’t blame you! That smoky aroma and the distinctive flavor it adds to your meat is simply… irresistible!
Remember that different cuts of meat need different smoking approaches. Pork shoulders, for example, cook slow and low for 5 hours or more, while beef briskets need more than 8 hours.
While your meat is cooking, make sure you don’t open up the lid to flip your meat or for any reason. Since you’re cooking slow and low, you don’t want to lose the heat and cause swings in temperature. Rest assured that both sides of the meat will be cooked evenly in your awesome smoker!
Tip: When smoking ribs, remember to remove the thin membrane on the bone side, as it can get quite rubbery and unpleasant!
Enough reading. Time to light up the BBQ! Put your grilling knowledge and skills into action and… Bon Appétit!
Stay tuned for more tips and ideas coming soon on our Blog!