With summer right around the corner, it’s time to break out your tongs, don your favorite novelty apron, tell your less talented friends to pick up some coleslaw, and take your rightful place as the grillmaster. While you’re sure to have plenty of neighbors convinced that they are the REAL grillmaster on the block, you have something they most certainly do not: The five best tips to take your BBQ from “okay” to “perfect.”
1: Do Not Buy Pre-made Burgers
This is the most obvious one: You don’t want to be the amateur who buys pre-made hamburger patties and then just throws them on your grill. It might seem like a great way to save time, but it’s an even better way to serve flavorless burgers that everyone needs to drown in ketchup. Take the time to buy some good quality meat that you can season yourself (even salt and pepper if you’re scared of being adventurous) and make your own. Use a mill for some ground up spices - or maybe even cut up some fresh herbs - for a delicious and memorable burger. Cutting up fresh herbs is a surefire way to take your burger from “eh” to “oh, wow.”
2: Throw Some New Things On The Grill
While you might just think chicken and red meat are the only foods that are appropriate for your grill, you’d be amazed at how good a nicely grilled bell pepper, piece of fish, or even watermelon (no that’s not a typo) can taste during a summer barbeque. Doing this not only allows you to try cooking new and fun things, but also makes you look like a really sophisticated grillmaster who watches Food Network and goes “Oh, yeah, I’ve done that.”
3: Marinate EVERYTHING
No, do not think you can get away with your chicken getting a thirty minute soak before it goes on the grill. Start that stuff the night before like a proper grillmaster! Cut up some fresh garlic and oregano in some olive oil for a fast and easy marinade, if you’re too scared to be adventurous. Also, make sure you keep some on hand to brush your meat while it cooks. It’ll keep it moist, add flavor, and gently caramelise in a way that’ll make your potato salad bringing friend blush.
4: Know Your Heat
So, one thing a lot of lesser grillmasters don’t know is that a BBQ is - effectively - a caveman oven. Of course, youknow that, you expert griller you. The proper amount of heat will determine how fast and how fully cooked your food is. A great test is the “hand test” - hold your hand about five inches above the heat. If you can hold it for six seconds with no discomfort, it’s low heat. If it’s four second, you’re looking at a good medium heat. If it’s zero seconds… Call the hospital and run water over it, you got burned.
5: Be Gentle With Your Meat (that’s not a euphemism)
While you’re cooking, it’s going to be tempting to use your fork to cut into whatever you’re cooking and peek inside. Don’t do it! Do not! Back away! Put down the fork! Cutting things open lets out all of the delicious juicy goodness you want from your meat. Do the touch test for steaks, and the color test for chicken, burgers, and fish, and you’ll always have five-star worthy meats.
With these five tips, you’re sure to have the BBQ that has the entire neighborhood talking until next summer. Don’t forget to check out Eparé’s collection of spice and herb grinders, along with a myriad of other must-have products for your BBQ or any other party you’re sure to throw this summer.