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Posted: 6/13/2009 2:29:47 PM EST
besides shooting, hunting, and fishing, i have no real hobbies. so after thinking about what i want to do, i saw some show on the food network about grilling. i figure that would be a nice, productive hobby, that wont cost a whole lot. i already have a charcoal grill and a gas grill. i also have access to lots of meat(see "hunting" above) and my family farms cattle and pork.. i figure i pretty much have everything i need.

who here grills? what do you prefer, charcoal or propane? any tips, hints, tricks that you care to share? is there a grilling website like arfcom out there? what should i start out grilling first?
Link Posted: 6/13/2009 2:35:25 PM EST

Originally Posted By AMG08:
besides shooting, hunting, and fishing, i have no real hobbies. so after thinking about what i want to do, i saw some show on the food network about grilling. i figure that would be a nice, productive hobby, that wont cost a whole lot. i already have a charcoal grill and a gas grill. i also have access to lots of meat(see "hunting" above) and my family farms cattle and pork.. i figure i pretty much have everything i need.

who here grills? what do you prefer, charcoal or propane? any tips, hints, tricks that you care to share? is there a grilling website like arfcom out there? what should i start out grilling first?
I'm far from a grill snob but I really prefer lump charcoal. It is quite controllable once you get the hang of it, it contributes a nice flavor, and the heat profile is really great. I think you just need to get out and start grilling and you will get the hang of it in short order. Know how you like your meet cooked, know what that feels like with a quick press on the meat, and cook your food perfectly every time! Getting the hang of your specific grill is likely to take the most time and even then it's not that big of a deal. With what to start out with...I say just start with what you like. Don't go for anything too thick the first time out as that will require more heat management. For me, the ideal grilling foods are NY Strip or a nice hamburger. Cook what you like...once you cook it then you can tweak your grilling technique more to your own personal style. Thankfully, it's not rocket surgery.
Link Posted: 6/13/2009 2:39:36 PM EST
Meat + Fire. Put em together!

Eat!

Link Posted: 6/13/2009 2:45:18 PM EST
Get yourself a smoker too.
Link Posted: 6/13/2009 2:46:13 PM EST
im listening too.
Link Posted: 6/13/2009 2:46:34 PM EST
Originally Posted By BangStick1:
Meat + Fire. Put em together!

Eat!



This. Go with gas. WAY quicker and harder to screw up.

I would love to have a smoker though. Smoked ribs.
Link Posted: 6/13/2009 3:13:45 PM EST
Originally Posted By marksman121:
Originally Posted By BangStick1:
Meat + Fire. Put em together!

Eat!



This. Go with gas. WAY quicker and harder to screw up.

I would love to have a smoker though. Smoked ribs.



Build a smoker. Their are easy. All you need is a sealed box (I use an old industrial 2 door reach in cooler) and a separate fire chamber and some ducting to vent the smoke to the cold box. Or, if you want to hot smoke, build an over-under setup.
Link Posted: 6/13/2009 3:23:55 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/13/2009 3:28:21 PM EST by Lester_Burnham]
My first ever "true ARFCOM fashion, get both" post.

I have a propane grill, and a charcoal grill.

Propane is faster and easier. If you're in a hurry, or hungry enough that you don't want to wait, you can use propane. It's easier to control the temp etc. I only like to do hamburgers, hot dogs, maybe chicken breasts. I don't like to do real nice steak cuts on propane, charcoal gives better flavor in my opinion.

I think charcoal gives better flavor. I use I think it's called "natural" charcoal (not the briquettes). It doesn't have the filler or additives that briquettes do. It takes a little more patience to get it started, but I like it better. Arrange your choice of charcoal in a pyramid, put on some lighter fluid, wait about a minute, light, and when the coals have a white layer of ash on them (maybe 15 minutes), flatten them out and commence grilling.

When I do chicken or ribs, I start both in the oven. I'll cook chicken thoroughly (in pieces), the put on BBQ sauce and put it on the charcoal grill for a few minutes each side. For ribs, I cook them in the oven in apple juice, applying BBQ sauce, then more sauce and finish on the charcoal.
Link Posted: 6/13/2009 3:27:25 PM EST
What do you want to know?
Link Posted: 6/13/2009 3:31:24 PM EST
Start with the right equipment....Get a large Big Green Egg with Bbq Guru controller for grlling.......Use a gas grill for hamburgers and hot dogs
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 2:30:53 PM EST
Originally Posted By photokirk:
What do you want to know?


everything.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 2:38:35 PM EST
When using charcoal (which is what you should always use) use a chimney starter. Never use fluid!
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 2:39:31 PM EST
I use wood instead of charcoal. It burns much hotter and the smoke smells better.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 2:40:18 PM EST
WHERE WERE YOU ON THE NIGHT OF MARCH 4th??
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 2:48:04 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/14/2009 2:48:28 PM EST by cruze5]
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 2:53:08 PM EST
Charcoal, and a smoker.

It is not rocket science, I learned most of what I do just reading websites dedicated to grilling and smoking food.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 2:55:37 PM EST
Use charcoal and weber style grill with a lid to control heat. Mound it a large teepee shape when lighting and soak the coals, and the grate with lighter fluid. Then let the fire clean the grate and finish with a wirebrush. Use plenty of coals. I hate to think about how many good steaks I screwed up because the fire wasn't hot enough so I had to cook it tooo long. Always cook with the lid closed!!! 3-4 mins on each side for a nice thick t-bone or porterhouse on some nice hot coals for a perrfect medium rare steak, no sauce. One more minute for a medium to med-well. Hard to screw up dogs or burgers. I still have problems not overcooking pork so I always let them soak in BBQ sauce after cooked. If you don't havva grill with a lid make sure to keep a bottle of water handy for fire-ups, (or you can use your open beer to dowse flames and add flavor when necessary if mama dont catch you doing it, the kids get a kick out of it).
Oh yeah, start out with T-bones excatly as desribed above and the steak houses will never satsfy you again in the future.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 2:57:04 PM EST

Originally Posted By bafordman:
Use charcoal and weber style grill with a lid to control heat. Mound it a large teepee shape when lighting and soak the coals, and the grate with lighter fluid. Then let the fire clean the grate and finish with a wirebrush. Use plenty of coals. I hate to think about how many good steaks I screwed up because the fire wasn't hot enough so I had to cook it tooo long. Always cook with the lid closed!!! 3-4 mins on each side for a nice thick t-bone or porterhouse on some nice hot coals for a perrfect medium rare steak, no sauce. One more minute for a medium to med-well. Hard to screw up dogs or burgers. I still have problems not overcooking pork so I always let them soak in BBQ sauce after cooked. If you don't havva grill with a lid make sure to keep a bottle of water handy for fire-ups, (or you can use your open beer to dowse flames and add flavor when necessary if mama dont catch you doing it, the kids get a kick out of it).
Oh yeah, start out with T-bones excatly as desribed above and the steak houses will never satsfy you again in the future.

No lighter fluid, use a chimney starter and lump charcoal.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 3:07:31 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/14/2009 3:29:59 PM EST by Jack19]
It's really hard to teach grilling/barbecuing to a novice on the internet. So much depends on what you're cooking and your heat source.

If you're just starting out and no one has ever taught you this stuff, go buy Steve Raichlen's book: How to Grill: The Complete Illustrated Book of Barbecue Techniques



http://www.amazon.com/How-Grill-Complete-Illustrated-Techniques/dp/0761120149/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_1

I've been grilling since my Dad taught me in the late 60s...but I learned a lot from Raichlen...a lot of what he writes brings a lot of theory into practice. And some of his sauce recipes are FANTASTIC.

My bro-in-law just switched to charcoal from propane after 20+ years. He's having a hard time getting his brain around charcoal timing for heat and meat cooking times. It's just a different animal.

Go buy a bag of Kingsford and do burgers and hot dogs and figure out heat, etc., before you slap down a $35 Porterhouse.

If you use starter fluid, give it 20-30 minutes to burn off the starter.

If you use a chimney, dump your coals after about 15 minutes as a GENERAL guideline.

You're going to burn things, you're going to cook things that are under done. It's all part of the fun.

And, get yourself one of these. Fancy and expensive grills are not needed to produce perfect food.

I've used a Weber Silver grill for the past 20 years, and it's just about worn out after continous weekly use...even in the winter.

$89.00

Link Posted: 6/14/2009 3:08:30 PM EST
I have a gas grill and love it.. We grill a lot, usually 3 or more times a week... We also grill year round..

You need to get an instant read thermometer - no better way to tell when something is done.. EX - Chicken should be cooked to around 170-180 degrees.. BUT if you get it to around 160 and pull it off it will continue cooking to where it needs to be and very juicy.. Without a thermometer you have to cut into stuff to see whens it truly done..

On a gas grill I prefer to cook on low to med heat.. slower the better in my book for most items..

Brian
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 3:09:08 PM EST
No matter what meat you are grilling, let it rest under foil for 5-10 min before you eat it or cut into it. Best advice I can give.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 3:54:51 PM EST
get yourself a charcoal grill (make sure its big enough for at least your family size x 2), start saving up some newspapers to start the charcoal, get yourself one or two chimney starters, one of those cheap long lighters, get yourself a nice brush, and finally a bayou classic stainless steel grill tool (look it up). Thats all you need.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 4:01:20 PM EST
I always overcook everything
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 4:05:47 PM EST
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 5:21:06 PM EST
I would recommend swinging by The Virtual Weber Bullet and taking a look around. It's a great resource.

I'd also consider picking up Stephen Reichlein's book How to Grill. It's a good guide to direct and indirect heat, plus how to set up your grill for high, medium and low temperature zones. The Barbeque University DVD is pretty useful too, but a little steep at $20.

I use nothing but good ole Kingsford briquets. I highly recommend them. They burn steady and consistently, with no spikes. Nice and predictable is a good thing when you're doing an epic 12 hour brisket cook.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 5:27:18 PM EST
Originally Posted By AMG08:
Originally Posted By photokirk:
What do you want to know?


everything.


Here you go.

I've been using this website for the past year. There's alot of info there.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 5:47:41 PM EST
I learned a long time ago that you can cook a lot of meat with very little charcol.

For the longest time I had been useing WAY too much charcol for the ammount of meat I was cooking.


Things are better now.



Gene
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 5:55:24 PM EST
This thread wouldn't be complete without some grillin' porn.





Link Posted: 6/14/2009 6:12:03 PM EST
Man, I wouldn't know where to start. It's just something that comes naturally to me after many, many years of doing it and watching it being done. We would go to the beach and grill on a Hibatchi every weekend. That's where I got my start from before I can even remember. It's since progressed and is now second nature. I can't tell you how many times I've fired up the coals in my life. I'll never own a gas grill. Some people just don't get it. Grilling is a fun activity for groups of people to do outside. Bullshitting, drinking, and enjoying the outdoors is what it's all about. When you use gas, sure it's faster, but that takes away from the fun in my opinion. Throw some meat on the grill and drink a beer. Turn meat and drink another beer. All the while having a good time with family and friends. I may not be getting things published in Maxim, but I guarantee you, I can cook on a grill with the best of em.
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 6:23:37 PM EST
I've been getting better at my chicken and burgers, so TAG
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 6:43:54 PM EST
Originally Posted By AMG08:
besides shooting, hunting, and fishing, i have no real hobbies. so after thinking about what i want to do, i saw some show on the food network about grilling. i figure that would be a nice, productive hobby, that wont cost a whole lot. i already have a charcoal grill and a gas grill. i also have access to lots of meat(see "hunting" above) and my family farms cattle and pork.. i figure i pretty much have everything i need.

who here grills? what do you prefer, charcoal or propane? any tips, hints, tricks that you care to share? is there a grilling website like arfcom out there? what should i start out grilling first?


This guy is a griller
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 6:50:11 PM EST
Originally Posted By BrianB2:
When using charcoal (which is what you should always use) use a chimney starter. Never use fluid!


Never seen that before - thanks!
Link Posted: 6/14/2009 7:39:16 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/14/2009 7:45:42 PM EST by topchef556]
Originally Posted By Lester_Burnham:

When I do chicken or ribs, I start both in the oven. I'll cook chicken thoroughly (in pieces), the put on BBQ sauce and put it on the charcoal grill for a few minutes each side. For ribs, I cook them in the oven in apple juice, applying BBQ sauce, then more sauce and finish on the charcoal.


I humbly submit that the preceding method can be improved upon. If you sear the meat on the grill, and THEN finish it in the oven, you'll seal in the meat's juices. This will require a fairly hot fire to accomplish.Of course, ideally, you want to cook from start to finish on the grill, and proper heat management will help here. But it's not always possible with especially thick cuts of meat. Marinating the meat will also impart any additional flavors you may want, but don't get too crazy, as the natural flavor of wood smoke and meat is what really shines on the grill.

Which brings me to the old gas vs. charcoal debate. As others have said, lump charcoal is the way to go. Gas imparts little to no real flavor. Be sure to use a chimney starter, as others have said. Lighter fluid seems to impart a vague chemical smell and taste I go a step further and sprinkle wood chips in with the charcoal. Mesquite and apple wood are good choices, with apple wood being especially great with pork, whether it be some nice, thick pork chops (bone-in, of course), or the traditional ribs
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