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Friday, May 24, 2013

Kick Grilling Season Off Right

Written by Kyle Slagley

For many people across the country, this weekend will be the first of many installments in this year’s grilling season. Guys everywhere are stocking up on charcoal, checking igniters, and quite possibly practicing their tong-twirling skills in the mirror as though they were the John Wayne of cookouts - not that I’ve ever done that or anything.

As with any other style of cooking, grilling takes a certain amount of skill, care, and finesse in order to master. Burgers don’t cook the same way as a T-bone, and charcoal is different than propane. If you have a vegetarian in the house like I do, squash doesn’t grill like an ear of corn, and veggie burgers definitely do not cook like hamburgers. I definitely found that out the hard—aka: charred beyond edible—way.

Lest you be one of those people who simply tosses the meat on the grill, walks away for 30 minutes, and takes it off when it’s about the texture of shoe leather, it will benefit you, your family, and your guests to brush up a little bit this summer. Whether you fancy yourself a grillmaster or a greenhorn, there are a few informative videos that may help out even the most seasoned BBQer.

BBQ Tech – One of the primary rules of cooking in general is to know your equipment, be it a stove, oven, pot, or grill. In this video, the History Channel takes you to the Weber factory to see how the grills are made. You’ll also get some insight into the history of barbecuing.

Barbecue – A Texas Love Story – Folks in Texas are very proud of their barbecuing culture, to say the least. This video gives a humourous-but-accurate look at how nearly every aspect of Texas life, in one way or another, ties back to barbecue.

Primal Grill with Steven Raichlen – When it comes to techniques, sauces, rubs, and recipes, there are about as many different opinions as there are people. Worry not, though; Steven Raichlen is here to guide you through all of the details.

BBQ Secrets – Master Guide to Extraordinary BBQ – I found this video to be a little more helpful for a more experienced griller. There’s a lot of information in here about all the different elements of grilling so it may seem like overkill to any but those who fancy themselves grilling aficionados.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a hobby if someone, somewhere, didn’t turn it into a competition! Be sure to check out: BBQ Pitmasters, All-Star BBQ Showdown, Barbeque Championship Series, and Now You’re Cookin’- Inside The World of Championship Barbecue.

And just to get the season started off right, here’s some background music for your weekend cookout.

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