Grillers – Where to Start and What’s Right for You

Young female and male couple grilling barbecue in natureHow to Start – Choosing the Right Grill for You

Everyone loves cooking on the grill, well, most everyone. It can be a social event where everyone gathers. So, how do you decide which Grill is best for you and what your going to use it for.

Charcoal Grills

Charcoal grills are one of the most used types of grills. Charcoal grills utilize charcoal and lighter fluid to fire up the wood and or coals which cooks your food. Charcoal grills come in all shapes and sizes, and vary in cost.

One of the best features of Charcoal grills is that they come in small sizes, which are ideal for apartments, small outdoor spaces or camping. Once you have used your charcoal grill, you can clean it, and easily store it away.

One noticeable feature when using charcoal is the flavor of the foods. To cook with a charcoal grill, you must buy charcoal briquettes, lighter fluid is an option these days. I like using charcoal along with real Mesquite to get that flavor and smell. The mesquite really hard that you can sometimes use it the next time you cook as coals. All these items can be picked up at your local store, gas station, or home improvement store, and are usually inexpensive.

Charcoal must be light and allowed to burn until the charcoal is no longer on fire, but its red embers keep it hot. One tip to consider is to pile the wood or charcoal in a pyramid shape so that it burns down and the fire is centered. It provides the best way for the fire to breathe.

Propane Grills

Propane grills are also useful for someone in small areas, since they can come in smaller sizes, which is also known as a Propane Gas Stove.

Gas grills work by a spark igniting the gas within the grill. Gas grills typically have a knob or button in which you push, which in turn activates a small hammer. The hammer hits the top of an ignition crystal. Then the burner mixes the gas with oxygen and spreads it all over the cooking surface.

Propane grills use propane gas to cook the foods. These grills cook very fast, so you have to lower the temperature and keep a careful eye on food as it cooks so you don’t burn it.

Gas grills, unlike some of the other grills types, have the ability to come with many different types of cooking surfaces. These different cooking surfaces include a BBQ surface, a flat grill, and a ribbed grill. Some grills even offer these types of surfaces as non-stick, which allow you to cook a whole array of foods that you would not be able to cook on a normal grill – otherwise known as a Hibachi Grill. You will be able to cook your whole meal, including side dishes if you plan correctly. Some gas grills even contain a Wok type surface for cooking pasta and rise dishes, or a full rotisserie set that allows you to cook rotisserie chicken.

Natural Gas Grills

The easiest grill to use is by far the natural gas grill. Natural gas grills are designed to hook directly into your home’s natural gas line, eliminating the need to provide the fuel source. Natural gas grills are also one of the easiest grills to clean since you do not have to worry about cleaning out the charcoal or wood.

Natural gas grills are a little more complicated then smaller grills, so they require more room are best a built-in cooking system.

Smoker Grills

Smoker Grills are used when flavor is the number one priority. Smoker grills use wood to slow cook the foods. Flavor can be controlled by using different types of woods.

Here are some of the most common woods used for smoking:

Cherry - Similar to apple, but slightly bitter because most Cherry wood comes from chokecherry trees. Use on Poultry-turns skin dark brown.
Sugar Maple - Smoky, mellow and lightly sweet. Use on Fish & Beef.
Hickory - The most highly used wood, both commercially and for home use. Has a strong, heavy, bacon Flavor. Use on Pork, Ham, and Beef.
Mesquite - One of the hottest burning woods. Predominately Honey, earthy flavor with a slightly bitter aftertaste. Use on Beef, Fish, Poultry.
Oak - A lighter version of mesquite. Red oak is quite similar to mesquite; white oak is milder. Use on Beef & Fish.

Another barbecue grill that has become popular over the years is the Big Green Egg. Although expensive of all of them, it’s made of ceramic and is considered a Charcoal Smoker Griller. This Kamado Cooker gets it’s origin from ancient history. The Big Green Egg is quite the cooker, it’s airtight cooking chamber retains the heat and insulates it from the outside and doesn’t get as hot. Whereas all the other cookers external units have hot surfaces, this is by far a safer grill to use.

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