Here are some simple common sense tips for keeping your mad grill skills going this summer. Plus, my favorite BBQ Chicken recipe to follow. I love, love this chicken and it’s a summer staple at our house with grilled corn and coleslaw.
Top 10 Grilling Tips:
1. Use the Right Equipment
Grilling must-haves include:
- Small spray bottle filled with water to tame any errant flames
- Silicone brush with fine bristles for basting
- Wire brush to clean the grill
- A pair of extra-long metal tongs for moving things around on the grill.
2. Start With a Clean, Oiled Grill
A clean grill reduces two problems: sticking food and flare-ups. Scrub grill clean with a grill brush. Then brush or rub the entire grate with a neutral-flavored cooking oil such as canola or vegetable oil.
3. Bring Ingredients to Room Temperature
Moving meat (or vegetables) straight from the fridge to the grill leads to uneven cooking. Let all foods come to room temperature for about 30 minutes before putting them on the grill.
4. Get a thermometer.
Take the guesswork out of cooking meats on the grill and invest in a thermometer.
5. Marinate Your Meat
Beef and chicken taste great with a delicious rub, but do even better with a fresh citrus or soy based marinade for juicier meat. Remember that for best results, marinades and rubs need a few hours to sit and get happy. Plan ahead accordingly.
6. Use Herbs as a Basting Brush
Tie a bunch of herbs together – rosemary and thyme work particularly well – and use them as a basting brush.
7. Prevent Flare-Ups
To manage flare-ups that occur, keep a small spray bottle filled with water at the grill, ready to spritz flare-ups.
8. Flip Once
Limit handling items on the grill. Grill completely on one side before turning or flipping, and then cook completely on the other side. Minimizing handling helps meat hold onto its juices.
9. Use a Grill Basket
Use a grill basket for foods that might fall through the grill rack or are too cumbersome to turn over one by one (vegetables, fish, tofu, fruits, etc.)
10. Let Food Rest
This tip is particularly important for all poultry and meat. Let meat rest – sit at room temperature (tented with foil to keep warm) – to allow the moisture and heat inside to distribute evenly. Resting is the final step in cooking meat. Ten minutes is good for steaks, larger cuts need more time – up to 45 minutes.
- For the Brine:
- 2 quarts water
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 garlic cloves, smashed with the side of a large knife
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- For the Chicken:
- 3 skin on-bone in chicken breasts
- 6 skin-on bone in chicken thighs
- Famous Daves Rich and Sassy BBQ Sauce
- For the brine, in a mixing bowl combine the water, salt, sugar, garlic, and thyme. Transfer the brine to a 2-gallon sized re-sealable plastic bag. Add the chicken, close the bag and refrigerate 2 hours.
- Preheat grill to a medium-high heat. Spray grill with non-stick spray and use grill brush to clean the hot grates making a nonstick surface.
- Take the chicken out of the brine, place on cookie sheet and pat it dry on paper towels. Place chicken breasts on grill bone side down. After 5 minutes add chicken thighs bone side down. Cook 15 minutes from the time you put the chicken breasts on the grill. Turn chicken over and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Add sauce to one-side and cook for 3 minutes. Flip over (skin-side should be up), add sauce and cook an additional 3 minutes.
- Transfer to a platter and serve.