|Written by Ponder|
With summer fast approaching, grill season is too. Take your grilling up a notch higher by using some of these tips. Some of these tips you may already know and some you may not have thought of at all.
Many people assume that any type of meat can be grilled and yes, that is true, but the thinness or thickness is very important for grilling. Thin cuts of meat will literally burn up on the grill or be so dry and tough you canâ€™t eat it. Use thicker cuts of meat which can be browned better on the grill. Then you cut it into portions after it has been cooked. A boneless pork loin is actually pork chops that havenâ€™t been sliced into individual chops. When you buy a larger cut of meat, it is cheaper than individual portions. If youâ€™re on a budget, keep this in mind.
Fresh herbs are a great way to season grilled meats or vegetables. If youâ€™re herb garden is going crazy and producing a lot, then cut the herbs and lay them on top of whatever youâ€™re grilling. Thyme and rosemary are great for flavoring meats and vegetables and even dried Herb de Provence can be used by sprinkling the herbs onto the hot coals, the smoke it creates will flavor whatever you have on the grill. Use rosemary stems as shish kabob skewers, the flavor of the stems will infuse the meat or vegetables. Remember to use stems that are thick and woody and you may have to make holes in the vegetables/meat with a knife, the rosemary stem may not be strong enough to push through the food items without some help.
Grilling with wood planks is not something new; Native Americans have used wood for cooking for centuries. You can find wood planks at your local supercenter or you can order them online. But keep this in mind, you canâ€™t use chemically treated wood, you must use wood planks specifically for cooking. These types of wood planks are available: cedar, alder, cherry, maple, white oak, and hickory. Soak the wood planks for at least 2 hours or overnight and make sure not to lay the planks directly onto the coals, they will burn up including what is lying on the planks. You should char the plank then turn it over and char the other side then lay the food on top of the plank, if it smokes, that is ok, and the smoke will give the food more depth of flavor.
Using charcoal for just one meal seems like a waste, plan ahead by grilling more than one or two items on the grill. Grill a few more vegetables and meat for other meals during the week. Basting vegetables and meats will help to keep the items from being dry and will also enhance the flavors and tenderness too. Marinate or not to marinate depends sometimes on the type of meat you want to use. Most marinades contain something acidic; the acid is a tenderizer and helps to break down the connective tissues. Citrus juices and vinegars are commonly used in marinades and you can buy premade marinade that includes spices and you add oil and vinegar/citrus juice or you can make your own. But a lot of people prefer something simple like salt and pepper which is fine and this method lets the flavor of the meat be center stage.