In this article you will find the GREATEST grilling tips from our Greatest Blaze & Co. grill experts:
- Chef Tony from BBQGuys.com
- Chef Peter Crawford – Darien Butcher Shop
- “Chop Meat” Pete – Master Butcher from Gus’s in Harrison, NY
- John Heffernan – Greatest Blaze co-founder
- Andrew Pearle – Meat Ball Host, Grill-Master, Doctor
- Jason & Nick from Blaze Grills
- Johann Odermann – Partner @ ArteFlame grills
- …and me, ‘Grill Mistress’ Lindsay Mama O’Neill
Before we begin, the most important part of becoming a grill master is to make sure you have the GREATEST grill.
Lucky for you, our two GREATEST grills (ArteFlame & Blaze Grills) are on sale this month (til end of July). CLICK HERE for more info.
Now that we’ve all salivated over the GREATEST grills, let’s get cookin’.
Here are our Top 10 GREATEST Grilling Tips for 2017!
#1 – Start with Quality – The key to fresh and delicious food is to start with fresh and delicious products. Sourcing the best meat, poultry, fish and veggies is vital to grilling up a mean meal.
Your local butcher can help you select the right cut for any occasion. Our local butcher, ‘Chop Meat’ Pete, says, “When you’re buying meat make sure you cook it the same day. Treat it as if you were buying seafood. Or, have your butcher freezer wrap it for you. If you don’t like the meat you see in the meat counter, as the butcher to cut it fresh. Trusting your butcher, and having confidence at the grill, makes all the difference in the world.”
#2 –Treat the Meat – Now that you have the right cut of the freshest meat, you need to treat that meat properly. Whether you’re marinating it, rubbing it, or simply salt & peppering it, Chef Peter Crawford recommends that you “let the meat sit at room temp before you cook it.”. Why? You want the meat to cook evenly. If you cook it while it’s cold, you will have a char on the outside and cold meat in the middle. “You can leave meat out at room temp for a minimum of 45 minutes, and up to 2 hours.” says Chef Tony from BBQGuys.com. Grab a cocktail and an appetizer and let the meat sit!
#3 – Use the Hot Spots – Johann Odermann, Partner at ArteFlame, tells us to “Use the hot spots. In an ArteFlame you can move the wood/coals around to create searing hot sections of the grill and warm sections. This allows you to cook at different temperatures.” I love this tip, especially for steak. My father-in-law knows how to cook a steak on the grill. He sears it first on high heat, then moves the steak to the top rack to let it continue to cook, but not overcook. The result is a thin crispy sear on the outside and perfectly medium rare all the way through.
#4 – Let it Rest! – I’ve had the pleasure of cooking with our own resident grill master and GB&Co. Co-Founder, John Heffernan. He knows how to take his time to ensure the perfectly cooked steak. His trick? “Let it rest. After cooking, let the steak rest before you carve it. If it’s too rare, you can always put it back on. Don’t overcook the meat.” John is right, no one wants to eat chewy, overcooked steak. Letting the meat rest allows for the steak to finish cooking at room temp and locks in all of those delicious juices.
#5 – Low & Slow – Chef Tony from BBQGuys.com is a true grill master. He knows the key to cooking EVERYTHING on the grill. When I met him in Baton Rouge last Spring he gave me some advice: “When you’re cooking something low and slow, keep it simple. For brisket, simply salt, pepper and a little brown sugar. Keep the lid to the grill closed until it’s done. The brisket should fall apart after it’s cooked perfectly. If it’s not gone [gobbled up] in 10 minutes, call me, because you did something wrong.” I’m an anxious slow cooker and I hover over my food. This was a great lesson in letting the grill do its work. Low and slow… let it go.
#6 – Touch Test – Are you still nervous about over-cooking your steak? You can follow the advise of Grill Master Andy Pearle, “always use a digital meat thermometer”, and/or, you can use my (Mama O’Neill) touch test. Here’s a picture from Clover Meadows Beef to help you follow along…
Medium Rare: Hold up your right hand and touch your pointer and thumb together. With your left finger touch the fleshy part under your right thumb. Go ahead, give it a poke! That is what a medium rare steak should feel like.
Medium: Now touch your middle finger and thumb together. With your left finger touch the fleshy part under your right thumb. That is what a medium steak should feel like.
Medium Well: Following down your hand, touch your thumb to your ring finger and poke the fleshy part of your hand to feel what Medium Well feels like.
Well Done: Finally, if you touch the thumb and pinky finger you get Well-Done Steak.
Like your steak RARE? With your right hand completely open the fleshy part of your hand should feel like a Rare Steak.
If you have an even cut of steak this test should work on any part of the meat. But if you have a bone in ribeye, or a skirt steak, the thickness might vary. Make sure you touch the thick and thin parts to ensure the perfectly cooked steak!
#7 – Cleaning [Gas] Grill – Many people ask, what’s the best way to clean a grill? Our friends from Blaze Grills gave us a lesson on their 3-Burner Pro Grill… Nick says, “You want to clean the grill after you’re done cooking. Crank up the heat and close the grill top for 5 minutes. Gently use a brush to brush off any remaining large chunks [that didn’t burn off]. Turn off the heat and close the cover again. Take a rag soaked in palm oil, and rub down the grill grates while still hot/warm. Use tongs to move the rag over the grates so you do not burn your hand. The grill should be perfectly clean and well-seasoned.”
#8 – The Perfect Schedule – I’m a freak when it comes to timing. I want all of my food perfectly cooked, hot and fresh. When cooking a FULL meal on the grill, you should always start with your veggies. After grilling veggies, you can place them on a lined pan in the oven at low heat [200 degrees] for up to an hour while you cook the rest of your food. If you’re making a sauce or a sautéed dish on a cast iron skillet [on the grill], that skillet will stay hot for at least 3 minutes. When the sauce comes to a boil, remove the skillet from the heat and place it on a cooler part of the grill. While your meat is cooking, prep your salad and pour the wine… your meal is almost ready to be served!
#9 – Get Creative – If you’re a good cook, you can become a GREAT grill master. Don’t be afraid to try new things, like grilling sliced sweet potatoes, or grilling dessert. Try new marinades, spice rubs, and wood chips to see what flavors really “pop”. Chef Tony from BBQGuys.com grew up in a family of amazing Southern Chefs. He took traditional creole style food, typically made in pots and pans, and figured out a way to cook the same food to perfection on the grill. Be bold. Try everything. Put your heart in to it! Cook breakfast on the grill…
#10 – Bring People Together – Our tagline is “bringing family and friends together”™ – Sharing the warmth of a fire and the comfort of delicious food, is the best way to bring family and friends together. At Greatest Blaze we believe that the best part of life is shared with the people you love. So get your family and friends around the grill. The ArteFlame grill is the best grill for cooking hibachi style. Sit or stand around the grill and cook your food together, while cooking your food specifically to your taste. No other form of cooking brings people together like grilling. Share the love and yum!
Get outside and get grilling!
Wishing you lots of LOVE & YUM,
Lindsay “Mama” O’Neill