Jun 15, 2010

Tipsy Tuesday - A Girl's Quick Guide to the Grill!

Let me ask you something, if you are a woman, does your husband do most of the grilling at your house?  Can you tell me why?  Did your dad do all of the grilling?  Did someone tell you that women don't grill?

I was confused by this even as a teen, when I would grill for my mom.  I started grilling at around 15, now, granted, I was "the boy" of my family.  With just two girls, someone had to take those tasks, like mowing the lawn and hanging up the Christmas lights.  I didn't even realize that these were strange things for me to do until I became an adult and discovered that I was unusual.

I can still remember a conversation I had with a friend, in the second year of my marriage.  She had been married for 25 years longer than myself and she was amazed that I BBQ'd.  I asked, why, don't you?  She laughed and said that her husband handled the grill and she did the cooking inside, and then said she didn't even know how to use her grill.

So, if you are in her shoes, and view the grill as a "man's tool", let me remind you that it is an outdoor stove, and during the warmer months, is the most ideal place to cook!  You don't heat up your kitchen, you can be outside with your kids while they play and grilled food tastes SO GOOD!

So here are a few tips on how to grill like a pro!
Like my fancy grill? A little duct tape on the handle shows that my grill is well loved!

Tip One: Learn to control the heat
If you have a gas grill, you have NO excuse to not know how to make it work!  Turn the gas on, light the burners and heat it up! With a Charcoal Grill, it is a little more challenging.  I never really cared for the flavor of lighters fluid in my chicken.  So, I discovered starters like this:

Both allow you to light your briquettes without any extra chemicals.  Both can be found at your nearest home improvement store during the summer months. (Near the Charcoal and BBQs). To use them and a charcoal grill here are some tips:
  • Allow 20 minutes for the briquettes to get hot.
  • Spread them out to form one layer. 
  • Place your grill above them and close the lid to the BBQ for 5 minutes before quickly scraping the grill with a grill brush.
  • Check the temperature of the briquettes with the hand test.  Hold your hand above the grill (don't touch it, it will be hot enough to burn you) and count "one one thousand", "two one thousand", "three one thousand", until 5.  If you can reach five before your hand becomes too hot to leave there, move the grill closer to the briquettes.  Ideally, between 4 and 5 is the perfect temperature.  If you have to snatch your hand away after 3, close the lid and vents to cool the briquettes down for a few minutes.
Tip 2: You might need more seasoning
I am not sure why it seems this way, but I always feel like I need more seasoning when I cook on a grill.  I would guess because the food doesn't really cook in the seasoning, it's just there, on the skin.

Tip 3: Use a timer
If you are anything like me, you will not stand beside a hot grill while you are waiting for the food to finish, you will be off watering plants or inside the kitchen getting the rest of the food prepped.  Be sure to use a timer so you don't forget to turn or remove your meat (or veggies - mmmm grilled veggies!)
The amount of time completely depends on the thickness of the meat and what you are cooking.  Chicken with the bone in, for example, takes two times longer on the grill than a boneless chicken breast.  A tri-tip might take 30 minutes, while steak should only take 12-15 minutes.  Look for and follow the recipes!
  • You also must learn about indirect cooking on a grill!  Put the briquettes in a ring around the edge, but not in the middle, and put your meat there.  This works for turkeys, whole chickens, ribs and other similar meats.  You keep the briquettes hot by adding cold briquettes to the hot, and they will keep heating new ones!
So, are you a "grilling girl" or do you allow/make your husband do it?  Did you learn anything new today?!

Just me, AJ


  1. I admit it. I don't operate the grill. Now that you ask, I'm really not sure why because I could totally do it! I think hubby likes it though. Something about men and fire? I don't know. No complaints here. :)

  2. Hubby does all the grilling. just because. He likes it. And frankly, I'm a little scared of lighting gas anythings... I'll do it evenutally, but right now, it's too tough to do it anyway with the little one crawling around :o)

  3. NO NO NO NO! Why in the world would we give up the ONE kind of cooking a man will do without force? I would much rather be enjoying the weather while he does what he enjoys, playing with fire??

  4. You are such a pro! I read that carefully as I need to do this now. I'm not a gas grill person, definitely charcoal. That flavor is unmatched!

  5. I'm the griller at our house!!!!! My hubs would rather he be (and sometimes he does). But he is terrible at knowing if something is done or not. And he will walk off and get wrapped up in tv and forget to check back. And I may honestly be a teensy, ever so teensy bit of a control freak. I'm not sure, but just sayin'. :)

  6. We have a BBQ in it's box, because we just got one and were not wanting to move with a used one. Matt and I have both never BBQ'd. My dad always did it. My hope was that Matt could learn so I could get a cooking break. All of those tips were very helpful, because I have no clue about any of it:O)LOL!

  7. I do the grillin. In fact, I bought a new grill this spring. I even grill in the snow throughtout the winter. I love grillin!


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