Ten Best Tips for Outdoor Grilling
Outdoor grilling is a great way to prepare a feast. Nothing tastes better than a meal cooked over hot coals or even (for you non traditionalists) a good gas grill. Innovation is the secret to successful outdoor cooking. I started with gas, graduated to charcoal and did my masters in wood. Over the years I discovered that eating a great meal became that much better with the knowledge that I had gained discovering the best ways to prepare it outdoors.
1. Start with good equipment
Do your homework when opting for a new grill. It really does make a difference. Keep it clean and perform periodic maintenance to stay at the top of you grilling game.
2. Invest in a some basic cast iron pans to compliment your grilling.
Keep your cast iron pans well seasoned and never ever clean with soap. Consider using a baking soda and salt mixture to clean your cast pans. It is great for veggies and even better for some basic desert recipes like apple cobbler.
3. Preparation is the key to a great meal
Try marinading the beef overnight to make sure it take on the right level of flavor you are hoping to achieve. You might even try some Italian salad dressing or a little red wine marinade which can make a cheap cut of beef a culinary delight. For chicken and pork, consider soaking the meat in a simple brine solution made with kosher salt, brown sugar and fresh herbs of choice.
4. In most cases, save the sauces until the end
Too many meals are ruined by meats drenched in a sauce high in sugars that ultimately lead to a meal burnt beyond recognition.
5. Always start with high heat
A good sear is critical to seal in the flavor of most meats. Shift to indirect once the meat as seared to perfect your meal.
6. Try smoking your meats
Hickory and mesquite are the obvious favorite woods, but apple, cherry and pear work well, too. Experiment.
7. Dry rubs are the best
No kidding, dry rubs work well, especially on pork. A little brown sugar, cayenne and garlic powder go a long way. To really set the flavor, I use a vacuum seal bag to draw the spices in. Don't be afraid to experiment, going light in you first endeavors and adjusting to meet your own tastes.
8. Most novice grill enthusiasts tend to overcook seafood
Remember, your fares will continue to cook for at least 10 minutes once you remove them from the grill.
9. Grill your vegetables
Almost any veggie can be steamed easily on the grill. Simply wet a paper towel, wrap the vegetable in it and then wrap in aluminum foil.
Take notes and adjust where necessary. Not every dish is conquered on the first try. But most important, have fun.
This post was contributed via Seed.com, AOL's new platform for freelance writers.