Today's backyard chefs are exploring all that backyard cooking and patio cuisine have to offer, grilling breakfast, lunch and dinner outdoors. They are using new and improved grills, new grilling tools and new techniques, all designed to keep up with this lifestyle shift outdoors.
If you're in the market for a new grill, consider how often you will use it, storage space and fuel type.
A portable charcoal grill may be the best choice for someone who will tailgate or occasionally barbecue at the beach or the park. Someone who plans to grill on the patio several times a week may need an easy-to-use propane or natural gas grill with temperature control. Electric grills are the right choice if you don't want to use gas or charcoal or your living requirements won't allow such a grill.
The availability of storage space is another consideration. A well-ventilated space and a grill cover are needed to store a grill outside. Grills can also be kept indoors if they are disconnected and the gas cylinder valve is plugged before storing the gas container outside. Never store the gas container in your house.
When buying the grill, consider the cooking surface, cooking system, burners and accessories. Porcelain is common and inexpensive; however, cast iron has better heat distribution and temperature control. Higher BTUs mean higher temperatures; lower BTUs mean better temperature control.
Burners, including rotisserie and back burners, allow for versatility in the amount, preparation and kinds of foods cooked.
Once you choose your grill, you may want to learn some grill safety skills:
• Never light any grill indoors, and place the grill at least 10 feet away from any structure.
• Children should be kept away from a grill that is in use or cooling down.
• For gas grills, always check the tubes, connectors and hoses for any sign of blockage, cracking, holes and leaks, and cover gas hoses to protect yourself from hot surfaces or dripping grease.
• For charcoal grills, never light or burn charcoal indoors-carbon monoxide buildup can be deadly-and never pour lighter fluid on charcoal that is already lit. Finally, never leave any grill unattended when lit.
The Home Depot offers a wide variety of gas and charcoal grills and “Grilling 1-2-3,” a do-it-yourself book with tool selection tips, helpful techniques and step-by-step recipes for a safe and successful outdoor cooking experience.
10 Things You Didn’t Know about Barbeque
10 Things You Didn’t Know about Barbeque
Every spring, North Americans gear up their grill, stock up on the meat, and prepare for many mouth-watering barbecues. But how much do we really know about the art of barbecuing? From the familiar pastime’s origins to surprising tips and tactics, this list will provide you with all the information you need to wow your friends at the next neighborhood barbecue!
1) Barbecues originated in pig-pickin’s, feasts that were common in the Southern United States prior to the Civil War. Whole pigs were cooked and eaten by the crowd.
2) “Smoking” was used as far as 6000 years ago in order to make meats safe to eat and store. The meat was exposed to smoke and low heat in order to prevent bacteria and enzymes from growing.
3) In Australia, a barbecue is commonly referred to as a barbie. The famous statement “I’ll slip an extra shrimp on the barbie for you,” which appeared in Australian tourism advertisements, is often used to refer to the country.
4) What most North Americans partake in today isn’t actually barbecuing. Barbecuing is cooking at temperatures around the boiling point of water (180-220*F) for a longer time period, in order to make the meat tender while preserving its natural juices. Today, the method most commonly used is in fact broiling: cooking at 475-700*F in much less time.
5) According to the Barbecue Industry Association, half of all marshmallows eaten in the U.S. have been toasted over a grill.
6) For an easy way to check how much propane you have left, bring your bathroom scale outside and weigh the gas tank.
7) The origin of the word barbecue is unclear. Some believe it came from the American-Indian word barbacoa for a wood on which foods were cooked. Others say it came from the french words “de barbe à queue,” meaning “whiskers to tail.”
8) To add a smokey flavour to your gas-grill-cooked foods or foods cooked inside the house, use “liquid smoke.” A condensation of actual smoke, this product can be easily added to your barbecue marinade or sauce.
9) Brisket, the extremely hard cut of meat taken from a cow’s chest, takes one to two hours per pound to barbecue. That’s an average 12 hours on the grill for a basic 8-pound piece!
10) Kansas City, Missouri and Lexington, North Carolina both claim to be the barbecue capitals of the world. Memphis, meanwhile, stakes a claim to being the pork barbecue capital.
Now you’re set to impress!
Buying Tips For Camping Stoves
Buying Tips For Camping Stoves
The vast selection of camping stoves tagged with technical terms a layman wouldn’t understand, may be scary for some who are not that experienced when it comes to camping and buying camping stoves. However, purchasing the right camping stove is not as hard as it may seem.
Here are some considerations you should take into account when buying a camping stove. With these information and simple tips, selection and purchase would be much easier
Camping brands like Coleman offer one, two and multiple burner camping stoves. What you should opt for should depend on the volume of cooking you intend to do. If you’re solo packing, a camping stove with one or two burner may do but if you intend to go camping with the whole family or plan to have a camping cook feast with a bunch of friends, go for a camping stove that has two or more burners to save time cooking.
Type of Fuel
After deciding which stove size is suitable for your camping needs, the next thing to consider is the type of fuel you’ll want to use. Your fuel options include propane, white gas (otherwise known as Coleman fuel), unleaded gas, butane or kerosene. However it is mostly recommended to use either propane or white gas only.
Out of all the camping stoves, those that are fuelled by white gas produce the most heat. It is the more environment-friendly choice for it burns cleanly without any odor or effect on food taste as well as produces less waste.
Many of the Coleman camping stoves that are fuelled with white gas operate on dual fuel system which means that the stove can run either on white gas or unleaded gasoline. However, it is best that you use only white gas unless during cases when you run out of it and can’t buy any.
Propane camp stoves on the other hand are simpler and more easy to use, but weigh a lot heavier compared with white gas. But propane Coleman camping stoves are also great choices because of their easiness to operate and ignite, and good performance in warm climates and at low elevations. Most Coleman camping stoves powered with propane fuel even have electronic ignitions to save time and energy.
Type of Camping Activity
Another consideration to make is the type of camping you intend to do during your trip. For example, if you plan to go backpacking, choose a camping stove that is lightweight, has a single burner for this is easier to carry in your load.
But if you intend to go on a family camping trip, a group hike or RV camping, it is more appropriate to opt for three or four burner stoves that would allow you to create a grand fiesta for everyone.
Now, if you’re planning to go on a beach camping trip or have a backyard party where you’ll probably want to do some grilling on the side, a combination of a stove and grill is the perfect choice for you.
Many camping brands such as Coleman provides you with a wide array of quality camp stoves and background information on its features to make your choice much easier.
Recipe: junior’s fresh brisket of beef with delicious gravy
Recipe: junior's fresh brisket of beef with delicious gravy
Junior's Fresh Brisket of Beef with Delicious Gravy
Every morning, one of the oversized ovens in the Junior's downstairs kitchen is busy roasting a giant-sized brisket of beef. And for good reason; this is one of Junior's blue-ribbon specialties. It's just one more taste of that home-style cooking that Junior's is famous for – served up in style with its own gravy, made straight from the pan drippings (what else?).
The best part of this dish: It roasts in the oven for three hours, asking for very little attention from you. But the flavors are so delicious that it tasted like you've worked all day.
The Junior's Way – Most brisket recipes ask you to boil the meat in a pot of water. Junior's does it differently: The chef roasts the brisket in an open pan. He starts the roasting with enough water in the pan to come about two-thirds up the sides of the beef. As the drippings begin simmering, he bastes the meat with the drippings several times during cooking. The brisket comes out very tender, but with a roasted flavor. "Always slice the meat on the diagonal – it's guaranteed to be tender and juicy."
Makes 6 to 8 Generous Servings
Makes 4 Cups Delicious Gravy
1 fresh brisket of beef, first cut (about 5 pounds)
2 tablespoons salt
1 teaspoon ground white pepper
2 cups chopped carrots
6 large garlic cloves, minced
For the Delicious Gravy
3 tablespoons fat skimmed from the drippings
or 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
6 cups strained pan drippings (save the
vegetables, if you wish)
3 large garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Rub the brisket with the salt and pepper and place it, fat-side-up, in a roasting pan. Pour in enough water to come about two-thirds up the sides of the brisket. Sprinkle the carrots and garlic into the water around the roast.
Roast the brisket, without covering it, until it is browned and tender, about 3 hours, spooning the pan drippings frequently over the meat. If necessary, add a little extra water during the cooking to keep the liquid at
least halfway up the sides of the brisket. Transfer the brisket to a serving platter.
To make the delicious gravy: Skim off any fat from the drippings into large skillet. You need 3 tablespoons of fat; if necessary, just add a little butter to equal this amount. Strain the drippings into a large heatproof measuring cup, reserving the vegetables for the gravy, if you wish.
Heat the fat in the skillet over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook until it begins to soften. Whisk in the flour and cook, stirring constantly, until the flour mixture bubbles all over, about 2 minutes. Gradually pour in the straining drippings and continue cooking and whisking until the gravy thickens. Remove the gravy from the heat and stir in the reserved vegetables, if you wish.
To serve: Slice the brisket on the diagonal, about 1/2-inch thick. Serve it up hot with a generous helping of gravy ladled over the top. This goes great with mashed potatoes.