Summer is here, and with it comes the smell of delicious barbecue in your neighborhood every day. If you are one of these master chefs, we commend you! Grilling is an art, and the flavors you create are often masterpieces.
However, like any art, using a gas grill requires a certain finesse to avoid mistakes that are often unfixable. Here are 5 common errors you should avoid so that you don’t mess up your next perfect creation.
1. Safety first – do NOT turn on the gas unless you have opened the cover first!
Gas and heat expand into the space that is available to them, and if you have given them a limited space, like a closed grill, they will continue to build up pressure in that enclosed area. The longer you have the grill on, the more pressure that is built, until when you finally open it, BAM! There go your eyebrows, or worse, and your recipe is on hold indefinitely.
2. Use the right amount of heat for your meat.
Each cut of meat has its own sensitivity to temperature. Cooking on a grill that is too hot can cause the outside of the meat to finish before the inside, and you have to choose between a subpar inside, which can be dangerous depending on the type of meat, or a charcoaled outside.
On the other hand, not using enough heat can mess up your food as well. Gas grills take time to preheat. The flames come on immediately and heat up quickly, but the grill itself takes an average of 15 minutes to heat to the right cooking temperature.
3. Cheap doesn’t always mean the best deal.
One of the biggest mistakes people make in grilling is quick, last-minute buying based on a low budget. It’s better to hold off, save up, and get a gas grill that has good reviews and can handle the amount of use you intend to give it.
You can easily find a high-quality, affordable gas grill with a little research. In fact, right here you can find the best propane grill under $500. There are times when you get what you pay for, and in grilling that usually applies to the cut of meat you choose and the appliance you cook it on.
4. Keep an eye on your propane tanks like you would your car gas tank!
There’s nothing worse than planning a party for dozens of people so that they can enjoy your culinary skills and then running out of gas before the food is done.
When you are cooking some meats, this is an inconvenience – someone needs to run to a store and get you some more gas! Hey, they’re eating free, right?
But with other meat choices, such as chicken, par-cooking it and then starting it up again later can cause health concerns. Not to mention, the heating and cooling and reheating may mess up the flavor and texture of your meal.
5. A little extra grease makes the flavor better, right? Wrong.
Lots of grillers have the “cast iron cook” mindset – a cast iron pot should simply be wiped down, not cleaned, as the leftover food enhances the flavor of your new meal. This is not the case when you are cooking on a gas grill.
It’s very important to follow the directions on how to clean your grill after a meal, and be sure that it is clean before starting to cook on it again. Things you previously cooked with can stick to your new food, messing up the taste, and not having clean grill grates can cause what you are currently cooking to lose contact with them and not cook correctly.