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Charcoal Grilling Guide 101

April 22, 2020

If you are charcoal grilling for the first time, then you might feel intimidated and overwhelmed by the idea of it. However, through our guide, we can assure you that your first charcoal grilling experience will be much easier than what you have anticipated.

Choose your Charcoal

Two of the most used charcoals today are mallee root charcoal and mangrove charcoal. Mallee root charcoal can provide you a fuel source that burns much hotter than other fuel sources. This type of charcoal will give your steak and meat a quick and powerful sear.

Mangrove charcoal, on the other hand, can give you a fuel source that burns more evenly. This type of charcoal provides you a more subtle and perfect cook for your food. Mangrove charcoal is recommended for food that requires less heat like vegetables and some types of meat.

Preheat the Charcoal Grill

Preheating your grill ensures your food to be greatly cooked and is fairly matches with smoky grilled and caramelized flavour. To preheat the grill, you must place some charcoal on the bottom grate of your grill. You can stack your charcoals in a pile or the chimney starter with the grill’s lid off. Once they are positioned, you can ignite them and leave them for about 20 minutes. If they are already glowing red, just spread them over the grate in a single layer. Let them burn for 5 to 10 more minutes until they are covered with grey ash.

Select Your Grilling Option

There are two types of grilling: direct and indirect grilling.

Direct grilling can be done in almost any type of grill. With this type of grilling, your food is placed on the grill rack directly over the heat. Direct grilling is best suitable for foods that are tender, small, or thin and can be cooked in less than half an hour. Steaks, burgers, kabobs, hot dogs, boneless poultry, fish, and most vegetables can be cooked well under direct grilling.

Alternatively, indirect grilling means placing your food over an area with no direct heat source. It is also done by covering the lid during cooking. If you intend to do this type of grilling, your coals must be spread apart on the opposite side of your food, creating one zone of indirect heat in the middle. Indirect grilling is recommended for cooking whole birds, ribs, large roasts, and whole fish.

Regulate Flare-Ups

Fat and meat juices that drip onto your coals can cause small blazes or flare-ups. Flare-ups are the ones responsible for making your food taste charred, so you must regulate any flare-ups responsibly. Some ways in controlling flare-ups include raising the grill rack, covering the grill, spreading the hot coals farther apart, or removing a few coals. You can also remove the food from the grill and mist the fire with water from a spray bottle. Return the food to the grill when the flame subsides.

Check Grill Temperature

One of the best ways to check the temperature of your charcoal grill is to hold your hand with palm side down at a cooking level over your grill. If you can comfortably hold your hand above the grill for five seconds, then it indicates that your grill has a low fire. A medium fire will allow you a 4-second hand count, while a medium-hot fire grants you a 3-second hand count. Finally, a 2-second hand count indicates that your grill has a hot fire.

If your grill temperature is too hot, you must reduce the number of your coals. Otherwise, if your grill temperature is too cold, you must tap the ashes off of the burning coals to let the heat radiate through the cooking area.

Charcoal grilling can be fun and easy if you study our basic guide. For more information about charcoal grilling, just contact us at John Tiras Pty Ltd. We offer a comprehensive range of combustible products, especially quality BBQ and fireplace supplies, for our customers.

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