When it comes to cooking out on your built-in grill, don’t get confused: Barbecuing and grilling are two entirely different techniques. The following will help you select the best type of grill for your cooking style – and make the most of that beautiful built-in so you don’t mess up your meat…
What’s in a Name? Barbecue vs Grill
Often used interchangeably, these cooking methods are not the same. Barbecuing involves cooking with a slow, circumvented unit of air, with cooking taking place under a closed lid. Most barbecue cooking uses charcoal, with larger barbecue grill options offering superior performance with the low temp, slow cooking essential for flavorful results. On the flipside, fast and hot natural gas grilling utilizes direct heat from the bottom of the grill to cook meat (instead of surrounding its source), making the ability to adjust temperature controls essential when selecting a home grill.
A Flipping Dilemma
While some feel getting too handsy with meat can damage dinner, others feel frequent flipping offers more even, flavorful results. The debate shall continue, and we’ll let you form your own conclusions, however we’ll just impart a bit of scientific fact to help you divert disaster: Repeatedly opening the lid when barbecuing adds fuel (oxygen) to your charcoal fire, increasing temperature – the opposite with gas, slowing cooking. Keep these things in mind when you grab a cold one from your fully-stocked kitchen island, experiment, and choose sides in the debate.
Focus on Flavor
There are many options for creating tasty grill meat…
Adding hickory or mesquite wood chips to your smoker tray can impart unique flavor.
Soaking meat before cooking in these typically salty, vinegary, or oily mixtures can boost flavor and soften texture.
- Dry Rubs
Patted on before cooking, these dry blends of salt, sugar, herbs and spices are absorbed into meat as pores open up during cooking.
Topping off fully-cooked meat with sauces can allow each family member or guest to select their ideal flavor.