Summer barbecue season is in high gear. That means barbecue steak. And if there’s one thing that has emerged from Pandemic Life, it’s been an appreciation for all things home. People have been spending thousands of dollars creating their backyard oasis, including premium seating, well-placed lighting, ponds and waterfalls, and the Cadillac of barbecues.
Steak brings so many benefits to the summer barbecue experience, plus untold nutritional benefits. You’ll want to check out our friend Chef Ted Reader, the “Godfather of the Grill”, for his extensive list of fabulous recipes for streak, chicken, pork, burgers, veal, lamb, fish and seafood. And if you’re going to tackle barbecuing yourself, here are some thoughts and tips on common mistakes to avoid.
Also, avoid constantly lifting the lid to poke and prod your food. Every time you open the lid, you let heat escape.
Flipping and flopping
Ideally, when you are cooking meat like barbecue steak you only want to flip it once. This minimizes how many times you have to open the lid (see the point above) and gives a nice, even cook. Educate yourself on the meat you are cooking and how long it needs.
If you have a chicken breast that calls for 12 minutes on the grill, put it over the fire, set a timer for six minutes and wait. As it rings at six minutes, flip the breast and reset the timer.
Take the temperature
Don’t make your dishes a guessing game. Know exactly when they are done by using a thermometer to measure the internal temperature.
Don’t wait until the next time you use your grill to clean it; a hot grill is easier to clean. Once the food, like barbecue steak, is off and resting (more on that in a minute), use a bristle-free brush or cedar scraper to clean the cooking grids of any leftover food chunks.
Impatience, The Sequel
Your food has reached the right temperature and the char on the outside is mouthwatering. The temptation is to dig right in, but it is time to once again practice patience. Let that meat rest; it will still continue to cook for several minutes once it is taken off the heat, and all the juices will seep back into the centre of the meat.
So once it is removed from the grill, put it on a cutting board or dish and cover with aluminum foil for at least five minutes before digging in.