Barbecue-tips Secrets of great grilling and smoking-meat
Barbecue-tip one Keep everyone healthy by keeping all your equipment clean
We could write the book about all the barbecue-tips that apply to barbecue and barbecuing as well as the smoking of meat. That takes a little patience but I think I have come up with some very important tips on cooking barbecue.
The most important barbecue-tip is to keep things clean so that you stay healthy. That means keeping your smoker, grill, dishes, and barbecue accessories such as the tong, fork, and thermometer probe all clean.
You want to stay healthy and keeping everything clean and washed with warm soapy water will keep the germs at bay.
The same applies to keeping your cutting boards and all surfaces where meat is placed clean.
Also remember that cold foods should remain cold and hot foods should remain hot. If you are not going to eat something right away place it in the refrigerator. This prevents the growth of harmful bacteria.
The importance of a good thermometer
It is very important in barbecuing to know the temperature internally off your meats to make sure that everything has cooked to the right temperature so harmful germs and parasites have been killed.
The only way to know this for certain is to use an instant read thermometer probe.
These cooking thermometers are very inexpensive today and are a must for all barbecuers.
I have discussed this on other pages that the only way to really know if the food is ready is to stick the thermometer probe internally into the meat-do not rest the probe tip on bone -it will give you a false reading. You then need to check the temperature in several places.
take a look ar some thermometers
When is the food ready?
The Food and Drug Administration recommendations are that
Raw pork ,beef and veal be cooked to an internal temperature of 145degrees f.
The FDA recommends that ground pork, beef, and veal to be cooked to a temperature internally of 165°F which should be measured using a food thermometer.
The FDA requirements that all poultry be cooked internally to a temperature of 165°F again this needs to be measured with a thermometer.
Barbecue-tips Plan everything two days in advance when preparing to bbq
If your planning to barbecue on the weekend the first barbecue-tip is to get everything you will need together a few days before.
That means getting your meat,spices,vegetables a few days earlier so you don't have to run to the supermarket at the last minute.
Prepare your meat the night before
if your placing a rub on the meat do it the day before your going to cook.The same thing applies to a marinade, place the meat in a plastic closed container in the refrigerator the day before your going to cook.
Barbecue-tips Soak the Wood Chips overnight
Woods: Start by soaking your wood chunks in water for at least 2 hours; but preferably overnight. Shake all excess water off woods before adding them to your fire or smoker box. (See my wood chips page to learn about wood)
Water: Water adds moisture to the smoking process so meats come out flavorful and tender. Its important to keep water always in the pan! If you’re using a traditional smoker with a water pan, try adding barbecue sauce, or soda such as Dr.Pepper, wine, beer, fruit juices, to the water in the water pan for additional flavor.
Always be sure to keep the water pan full. Do this by checking the pan every 3 hours. For large roasts and turkeys, you may have to add water to the pan a couple of times throughout grilling. you can ad water with a flower pot water container. Check the water pan when you add charcoal–a watering can makes adding water easy.
On the other hand,it is important in the water smoker to not check too often, because you will keep dropping the temperature which you want to be around 220°F constantly.
Food: Place food in the center of the cooking grate above the water pan (if you are using one).
Remember that smoke and heat escape every time you peek into the grill, so add 15 minutes to cooking time for each peek (more if you are smoking in cold weather If you don't live in the Southwest).
So add more cooking time for wind, cold, and high altitudes and cooking in snow storms and blizzards you will have to adjust your time cooking to probably 30 min per peek.
Yes it is possible to cook in the covered smoker during a snowstorm this is something that I have become an expert on during my years of living in the frigid northeast United States.
Always place the smoker smoker on a level, heatproof surface away from buildings and out of traffic patterns. It’s best to find a place away from the house, since smoke aromas can linger for hours.
To prepare the smoker, place charcoal in the center of the cooking grate, ignite the coals using a chimmney smoker, and when coals have a light coating of grey ash, spread them evenly across the inside of the charcoal chamber.
Check your recipe for number of charcoal layers needed. If you are using the water pan, place it on the lower bracket of the center ring and fill it with hot tap water.
Place soaked woods on the coals through the door on the front of the smoker. Keep all vents partially closed for smoke-cooking. Place food on the top and/or middle cooking grate, depending on recipe and food quantity.
Arrange food in a single layer on each grate, leaving space for smoke to circulate around each piece. Add 12 to 14 briquets and around 5 wood chunks on top of the hot coals, and replaced water and seasonings as we have discussed above.
Keep the fat on the meat for best flavor Is my next barbecue-tip
Barbecue-Tip concerning fatty meats.Boneless meats, such as beef brisket and pork shoulder, will shrink considerably during smoke-cooking, unless they have a heavy layering of fat. So you should also always buy brisket and pork shoulder that has upheld the amount of fat on it.
Barbecue-tip on lighting the grill prior to cooking
1. Light the coals 30 minutes prior to cooking. Coals need time to settle. The coals are ready when you can hold your hand over the fire for two to three seconds (very hot) or three to four seconds (medium hot).
You should avoid cooking directly over flames, as they can quickly burn your food. Place the coals to one side of the grill so they are not directly under the food
2. Light the coals using a weber chimney never use lighter fluid or coals that contain lighter fluid—a tall, cylindrical device in which you stack the charcoal.
You will use newspaper at the bottom of the chimmeny to light the coals, You can even use old PHOTOGRAPHS of your ex. A chimney ensures an easy and even burn without the use of lighter fluids-avoid lighter fluid or lighter infused charcoal at all costs-it makes the food taste bitter in my opinion and most of my friends agree .
3. When grilling meat or vegetables, cut your food into pieces that are too big to fall through the cracks in the grill. This will save you a lot of misery and grief watching your hard earned food burn up.
4. If you want to mop or marinate your meat, do so for at least three hours prior to cooking. Overnight is even better. Place the meat and afterwords in the refrigerator. Marinating tenderizes the meat and reduces cooking time besides giving the food a great taste.
5. apply barbecue sauce on to the barbecued food only during the last 10 minutes of grilling. Applying sauces earlier can cause burning and make the food to taste horrible.
6. Avoid fires by keeping your grill away from buildings and trees when cooking. Always attend your grills or smokers-always be watching them!
7. Don't place cooked meat on the same plate used to carry raw meat. This can cause bacterial contamination. Always use clean dishes and wash your hands with warm soapy water to avoid ending up with food poisoning!
8. Clean your grill while it's still warm, using a wire brush. for stubborn dirt consider investing into a steamer to help clean your grill without the use of chemicals.
barbecue cleaning with the steamer
Have a fire extinguisher near the grill
In fact you should have one in the kitchen and one in the garage and one upstairs-at least 4 in the home. Thats what i do .