Barbecues are a great way to treat yourself, family and guests, even more so, when it’s done properly. The smoky smell of the meat sizzling on the grill is always something to look forward to. But, as much as the idea of grills sounds great, some aspects of it can be such a hassle. I’m sure spending your weekends grilling outside is not something anyone would do all the time, but when you do, you might want to avoid those mishaps and apply some hacks to help you save time and enhance the flavour of your dishes while you enjoy a much better experience. So, the next time you plan on doing grills, these hacks will help you a great deal.
1. Boil Your Meat Before Grilling
Now, if you don’t want to spend too much time standing by the grill for the meat to get done properly, you can boil it for few minutes before grilling. This will reduce your grilling time.
2. Serve Barbecue Condiments in a Muffin Tin
Apart from baking, you can also use muffin tins to serve your barbecue condiments like ketchup, mayonnaise, mustard, sliced onions and other toppings. We all know grilling burgers and hotdogs are not complete without the condiments that go with it. So rather than lining up the table with so many bottles and containers, just serve the condiments in a muffin tin. This gives you a condiment bar that is very portable and easy to pass around. Also makes cleaning up easier and quick. However, you won’t want the condiments exposed when outside, so you can use aluminum foil or film to cover it when it’s not being used.
3.Keep Your Burgers Moist with Ice Cubes
When grilling burgers and steaks, they can easily get dry and rock-hard and I’m sure no one will eat that with relish. But this genius hack will give your steak and burgers the restaurant standard. First, make an indentation with your thumb right in the middle of your burger. Then place an ice cube or cold butter in the center where you made the dent. The ice or butter will melt and evenly distribute to every part of the burger while cooking. This will give it the moisture it needs to get a yummy, tasty burger that will have anyone begging for more.
4. Spiral-cut Your Hotdogs
If you are familiar with hotdogs, you will know that they are mostly shorter than the bread size and they may not get done in the inside without it getting burnt and all dried up. So, spiral-cutting your hotdogs is a really good way to get it done and it tastes really great this way.Put hotdogs on a skewer and spiral cut them before putting them on the grill. Just make sure the cut does not get to the other end of it. This way, they cook better and give an amazing taste.
5.Grill Fish On Lemon Slices / Citrus
Fish can be tricky to grill because of their delicate texture and you won’t get the best out of your grilled fish if you don’t know the proper techniques to use. Fish can break easily and sticks to the grill when trying to flip it. So, to avoid tearing the fish apart and having only fish bones at the end of grilling, slice lemons or oranges one-quarter inch thick and line them on the grill. Then place the fish on a bed of the lemon slices. This will not only infuse the citrus flavour into the fish, it will also prevent your fish from breaking and sticking to the grill. You can also serve the fish with freshly sliced lemons.
6. Use Tin Foil to Clean Your Grill
When it comes to cleaning the grit off the grill grate, it is easier to use a disposable tin foil to get off all the crust stuck on your grill. All you need is a sheet of tin foil, crumple it into a ball and use it to clean. You can hold the foil with your hands while cleaning or use a pair of tongs to secure the tin foil ball while scraping the dirt off the surface of your grill.
7.Use an Onion to Clean Your Grill Grate
If you don’t have any foil around, don’t worry. An onion can do the trick. Onions have moisture and acidity that helps in breaking down the residue on the grill grate and helps to remove it easily. Simply slice an onion in two halves and pierce it with a fork, then slide it up and down all over the grate. You can also rub the onion before putting your food on the grill to prevent your food sticking.
8. Light Your Coal with an Empty Egg Carton
Lighting coals tend to take time to heat up before the fire circulates which seems to be one huge drawback. So, rather than having to wait for them to heat up, you can speed up the process by using an empty cardboard egg carton to start the fire. This is definitely Sew Many Ways‘ fool-proof way to start a fire and keep it burning. Just fill an empty egg carton with charcoal bricks in each slot and place it on the charcoal grill. Then light the entire carton. It’s really easy.
9. Use Two Skewers Instead of One
If you are going to pop your meat, chicken, shrimps, sausages or any other food on skewers to grill, then it’s best you use two skewers like it’s done in the picture. The thing with kebabs is that they are constantly turning on the skewer. And getting them to cook the right way can be difficult. But by securing both ends of your food with two skewers, you can easily flip them and turn them around and ensuring the food is evenly cooked.
10. Soak Your Skewers in Water Before Use
Before using wooden skewers on the grill, make sure you soak them in water for at least an hour or two before using them. This way, the skewers won’t dry out and easily burn out before the food is cooked and ready.
11. Spray Your Meat with Apple Juice to Keep It Moist
When grilling food, your food can easily dry out. You can avoid this by spraying some apple juice on your meat while cooking on the grill. Just fill some apple juice inside a spray bottle and spray when needed. This way, you will keep your food really moist and give your food an amazing taste and aroma.
12. Herbs as Skewers
A great way to make your kebabs taste really amazing is by using herbs. So, instead of using skewers, you can use herbs such as rosemary. They work as a great substitute for skewers, and allows the great flavour to infuse directly into the food while making it look very appealing.
13. Empty Cans of Tuna
Yes, you can use empty cans of tuna to stop your meat from burning on the outside just like how Serious Eats has done it here. Just make sure the cans are washed clean. The thing is, large-sized meat is usually not ideal for grilling because they can easily get burnt on the outside before they are fully cooked inside. But, you can still get your way around this by using empty cleaned tuna cans. Once you start grilling and have gotten a good crust on the outer part of your meat, you can then place it on two or more tuna cans placed on the grill. It will continue to cook on the inside even when it’s not directly in contact with the grill. This will ensure the inside of the meat cooks properly without getting burnt on the outside. You could also use a warming rack by placing the rack on the tins before putting your food on it.