In a recent post, we explained that the arrival of summer means more backyard grilling. From families grilling up hot dogs, to culinary graduates perfecting their signature hamburger recipe, summer is meant to be a season of grilling. To help make you a master behind the grill, we shared a handful of important tips, including whether you should choose gas over charcoal and the best cuts of meat to cook. But there is so much more to becoming a genuine grilling guru, and that’s why we’re now serving up four more summer grilling tips. Enjoy these with a side of fries!
“A salmuera is brine made of salt water.”
1. Abandon your rubs
Many chefs and cooks swear by rubs or sauces for their steak or ribs. It’s a way to add a bit of spice or some unique flavor to most cuts of meat. However, as The Kitchn pointed out, you’re better off using a salmuera. That’s a fancy way of describing a brine made with sea salt. While spices might add new flavors to a cut of meat, the salmuera is all about emphasizing the inherent flavors. Plus, it helps cook the meat, resulting in a tender interior and a crusty outside. According to Asado Argentina, the best salmuera is fairly straightforward: a cup of water, three tablespoons of coarse salt and four cloves of finely minced garlic.
2. Preparation is vital
Not many people know this, but it’s important to pre-grill before any big cooking session As the Daily Burn pointed out, 30 or so minutes of pre-grilling will destroy any harmful bacteria still lingering. A British study from 2013 found that many outdoor grills have twice as many bacteria as a toilet seat. Not only will you lower the chance of foodborne illness, but this will give you time to prepare the rest of the meal. If you want to cut down on grilling time, the Daily Burn said to microwave the meat beforehand. This might seem sacrilegious to some grillers, but 60 seconds can cut grilling time without impacting taste.
3. Rely on your equipment
For the most part, there’s only one piece of equipment you need to cook up those savory burgers – a decent grill. However, as BGR.com pointed out, a great grill master also relies on other important pieces of equipment. If you opt to cook with charcoal, purchase a chimney starter. This tool is a great way to easily light coals, and they’ll reach optimal temperature much faster. Just make sure the top of the coals burn white prior to putting them on the grill. And speaking of temperature, look into a meat thermometer. You want to be precise as possible whenever you’re cooking meat, and the thermometer will give you the ability to carefully monitor any cut. There are several kinds of meat thermometers available, and most are inexpensive.
“Most flare-ups occur due to fat droppings.”
4. Control the energy
In grilling, flare-ups can either be a minor annoyance or the reason you’re forced to eat a burnt steak. As Serious Eats explained, most flare-ups are the result of meat dripping onto coals, which effectively adds fuel to the fire. The most effective way to deal with flare-ups is to have space available to move things around. Giving your burgers a chance to cool down will prevent them from overcooking. If your grill is otherwise crowded, use a spray bottle to douse the flare-ups. Just be careful with where you spray the water, as this can also move around any fat or soot and worsen the situation.