JULY 4TH SUMMER GRILLING TIPS
Summer means cold beer, freedom, and grilled meats. Grilling meat is truly an art form, and I am here to make you the Picasso of beef, chicken, and pork.
Here are some tips on cooking to perfection:
PRE-HEAT, PRE-HEAT, PRE-HEAT! Make sure your pan or grill is hot enough and up to temperature before you grill. Meat shouldn’t touch a grill until its screaming hot. If you don’t properly pre-heat your grill, your food will stick and cook unevenly. To test: hold your hand over the grill, if you can hold it their without moving for more than 5 seconds, your grill isn’t hot enough yet.
STOP POKING THE MEAT! Constantly poking and pressing your meats will not only make them flavorless because of juices being pressed out, but will also add additional cook time to your product. Also poking your meat will cause juices to drip into the heat which can cause flare-ups which can ruin your food.
SEASON YOUR FOOD! Beef needs some help, but just something simple help. Salt and pepper are king. The worst thing you can do is under-season your meats and disappoint your company. Also try some BBQ rubs for some of the things you are cooking. These rubs have been crafted to give you the best flavor possible. No bland meat allowed!
CLEAN YOUR GRILL! Nothing is worse than a burger that tastes like the last 4th of July. Clean your grill, but don’t use a wire brush. The wire brush can cause scratches and dents that hold gross flavors and can wind up in your food. They can also break, leaving metal shards in your meats. Instead put your grill on high and let things burn off. I have also come to find that white vinegar will clean just about anything.
USE THE RIGHT TEMPERATURE & COOKING TIMES. If you are worried about temperatures, grab a meat thermometer! For ground meat mixtures (beef, lamb, veal, pork) you’ll want to cook the grub to a minimum of 160 degrees, and for chicken and turkey 165 degrees. For fresh beef, veal, and lamb steak or chops cook until 145 degrees.
For poultry (wings, thighs, breasts), the temperature needs to be 165 degrees. Fresh pork will need to be cooked until 145 degrees. All temps are from FoodSafety.Gov. Cook chicken breast (bone out) 3 minutes a side, I’m not good at temperature but this trick has never failed me. When you flip the burger put the cheese on immediately. Kraft cheese melts the best and always gives a nostalgic feel.
LET STEAKS REST! You don’ want the delicious juices going anywhere, so when you pull that gorgeous steak or tri tip off the grill, cover it with foil and let it rest for at least 10 minutes before cutting into it.
BULLET PROOF CHICKEN. Sue Bonzell has a surefire way of cooking bone-in or boneless chicken which of course has wine in it: grill each side enough to get some good grill marks, then put the pieces into a baking dish. Add a little white wine, sliced onions and whole garlic cloves. Cover and put it into the oven at 250-300 degrees for about another 30 minutes. It will steam it into perfection and will be falling off the bone!