Grilling is a great way to give your food some extra flavour and is fairly easy to do once you get the hang of it! Whether you’re barbecuing for the first time or you’re exploring a passion for summer’s favourite cooking method, here are some grilling tips and other interesting tidbits from our Product Development Chefs to help you feel more confident when cooking.
What are some essential BBQ tools?
- A great pair of tongs!
- An apron that says “Kiss the cook” will help protect you from any grill splatter.
- Some wood chips for smoking are always essential. Adding a few wood chips in aluminum foil on the grill can impart excellent flavour!
- Bonus: A meat thermometer is an excellent tool to prevent overcooking and drying out your food. Grab an instant-read thermometer so you can make decisions quickly, or one with a heat-proof coil that you can leave in the meat and ensure proper temperature. They even make Bluetooth versions now, so grab one in your price range and get cooking!
Top 3 barbecuing tips?
- Get organized! Have all your mise-en-place ready so cooking will be a breeze.
- Cook food in order of how long things take to cook – Cook food in order of how long things take to cook – the items with the longer cooking times go on the grill first, and the ones with shorter cooking times last so everything will be ready at the same time. For example, say we had the following items to cook for one massive feast: veggies, chicken breast, medium-rare steak, turkey burgers, sausages, salmon on cedar planks, and shrimp skewers.
This is the order we’d cook them in:
- Chicken Breast
- Cedar plank salmon
- Turkey burgers
- Medium rare steak
- Shrimp skewers
- Arm yourself with delicious sauces and marinades. Farm Boy BBQ sauces, Farm Boy™ Sweet Teriyaki Cooking Sauce and Farm Boy™ Wing Sauce are a few examples that make for easy and flavourful meals.
What are a few common mistakes people make when it comes to firing up the BBQ?
- Starting the gas just before cooking, therefore attempting to cook when the barbecue has not pre-heated properly. You’ll want to light a gas BBQ 8-12 minutes beforehand.
- Not thinking ahead and lighting the charcoal or wood too late. For these heat sources, you’ll want to light 45-60 minutes before cooking.
- Not cleaning and greasing the grates before cooking. Use a BBQ scraper or steel wool then rub grills with a paper towel lightly oiled with vegetable oil.
Does it matter what type of heat source is used to grill?
Heat source matters, because they all give a slightly different taste profile: gas vs charcoal vs wood, but all of them produce delicious meals!
For the novice, gas would be the easiest and most convenient way to grill, whereas charcoal and wood grilling require a bit more know-how to regulate temperatures correctly.
Favourite food to cook on the barbecue?
We love the following on the grill:
- Our Flattened Chicken (Farm Boy™ Peri Peri Chicken!!). It cooks up fast, remains moist and skin crisps beautifully.
- Farm Boy™ Gourmet Burgers because they stay juicy and get a nice crust from the flames.
- Farm Boy™ Artisan Sausages – they’re easy, quick, and delicious!
- Farm Boy™ Kebabs – for convenience and flair.
What’s a foolproof BBQ meal that a grilling novice can’t mess up?
- Farm Boy™ Gourmet Burgers are quick and easy.
- Farm Boy™ Mesquite Chicken Wings (if you overcook them slightly, they get crispy and delicious).
- Farm Boy™ All Beef Frankfurters make great hot dogs.
- Farm Boy™ Halloumi cooks up with a beautiful crispy crust.
Most difficult food to barbecue?
Fish and seafood. Fish is a bit more difficult to handle because it often sticks to the grates and it’s easy to overcook; the same applies to seafood. And because it cooks so fast, you have to be careful not to overcook it.
Uh oh…you’ve run out of BBQ sauce – what do you do?
- You can quickly mix up a simple sauce using Farm Boy™ Ketchup with a little brown sugar and Farm Boy™ Organic Apple Cider Vinegar.
- If you don’t want to use BBQ sauce, why not use a dry rub mixed in with minced garlic and Farm Boy™ Extra Virgin Olive Oil? Great examples are our Farm Boy™ Steak Spice, Lemon Pepper, Cajun Spice, Tandoori Spice, etc. Simply make a paste and rub it on your protein for delicious flavour.
- Using Farm Boy™ Lemon Garlic Dressing is also a great way to marinate seafood or chicken for a quick flavour boost before grilling.
Here are some guidelines for marinating times:
- 15min -Seafood
- 30min- Fish
- 2-4 hours Chicken and pork
- Up to 24 hours for red meats
Favourite grilling hacks?
- Make sure you use the whole grill and when you flip your meat/fish/veggies, always move them to another spot on the grill, since the spot you’re on now is already cooling.
- Oil your foods sparingly; excess oil will cause flare-ups and flames.
- Soak your skewers in water to prevent burning on the grill. This also helps your food slide off easily.
- If you’re experiencing BBQ technical difficulties, use some liquid smoke, smoked paprika, or smoked salt to impart a little smoky barbecued flavour without having to use the grill.
- If you can’t get the classic X grill marks on your foods, move them around a little more and try to create a beautiful brown crust (ie GBD – Golden Brown Delicious).
What are your favourite grilling tips and/or hacks? Post them on social and tag us! Visit our Savour the Summer page for more summertime cooking inspiration.