Sunday, January 31, 2010

Back Outside, Grilling!

Today, for the first time in - quite a long while, I got out and grilled burgers. (My last outdoor grilling session was December 13, I think)

Nearly incinerated them, but they were pretty good. By my standards, anyway.

Sunlight, snow, and a grill. It was bright out there. (January 31, 2010)

Burgers in their pre-done state. (January 31, 2010)

A tip of the hat to my son, who shoveled out around the grill and back stoop: and #1 daughter, who chipped off some more ice. And took a divot out of one step. Oh, well: the wood's about ready for replacement, anyway.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

A Grill in Winter

A grill stands in snow,
Amid sparkling crystals,
Patiently waiting.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

From Deep in the Heart of Darkest Minnesota: A Couple of Videos From Hawaii

"Best BBQ Chicken on the Planet"

joedavidsonBBQ, YouTube (July 2, 2009)
video, 7:41

"Watch world champion BBQ chef Joe Davidson prepare his winning chicken recipe. Cooking from Hawaii this time, he adds a bit of a Polynesian twist. This recipe will 'broke da mouth' (taste really good). Perfect for the Fourth of July...."

This really doesn't have much to do with grilling here in the heart of darkest Minnesota. But it's below zero, Fahrenheit, outside; I didn't get a chance to grill last weekend; and I figured I could use a change of pace.

What decided me on posting about this video was Joe Davidson's use of a chicken jacuzzi bath. I am not making that up. "Chicken jacuzzi bath!"

This video was recorded "on location in Honolulu" - which would account for the tropical plants and bright sunshine.

Joe Davidson talks you through the process of making what he calls the "best BBQ chicken on the planet." If you've got a good memory, or take notes: I'd say two or three viewings of this video might be enough for you to have a shot at the recipe, yourself.

The YouTube page includes links to Joe Davidson's website:

Now, for some Hawaiian scenery:

"360 view from on top of Diamond Head, Oahu Hawaii"

spoonyfork, YouTube (January 7, 2008)

"360 view from on top of Diamond Head summit bunker on Oahu island in Hawaii. I am standing on top of the bunker's concrete roof on December 15, 2007...."

The sound you hear is wind on the camera's microphone.

This isn't the slickest video you'll ever see, but my hat's off to spoonyfork: It's one of the very few that actually give the viewer an idea of what it's like to stand where the camera is.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Grilling a Turkey, Outdoors, in Winter: a Video

"grilling turkey in winter"

billhemingway, YouTube (December 26, 2009)
video, 2:38

"20lb. turkey grilled in 20 degree weather in 3 1/2 hours using 2 kettles"

This is definitely an amateur video: with some pretty good advice.

It's a charcoal grill, rigged with a double lid and double kettle. My guess is that it's 20° above zero, Fahrenheit - but the narrator doesn't say.

He does say - and shows - what he's doing.

Brief, informative - it's not the ultimate how-2 video, but it's pretty good.

And: it's nice to see I'm not the only one who grills when there's snow on the ground.

Not that I did today. We'll see about tomorrow.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

BBQ - Rasberry? Vinegar?? Chicken??? And Guriru-Do

The Easy Griller is still staying inside more than usual. Which doesn't have much to do with this post's topic:
"Grilled Chicken Breasts in Raspberry Vinegar Marinade"
Annie H, on Recipezaar (March 13, 2000)

"This recipe was adopted from the RecipeZaar account. After making this myself, I found that the addition of a couple of tablespoons of seedless raspberry jam to the basting liquid really added a nice flavor. Use in the last few minutes of broiling or grilling as the jam will burn...."
The page says this takes 20 minutes to prepare. About 19 over what I prefer: but it may be worth it.

I did not know there was such a thing as "raspberry vinegar."

The Easy Griller has a son-in-law now, who is something of a gourmet cook. He's served the family some of his work - and it's a treat. I may, eventually, learn to appreciate doing something beyond basic food preparation, myself.

Don't get me wrong: I like to grill. A lot.

But fussing over marinades and that sort of thing? Not so much.

I think a great deal of grilling's appeal for me is that it gets me outside for a good fifteen minutes to an hour or so. And - the way I do it - leaves me free for most of that time to relax and watch the grass, trees and shed; listen to traffic, dogs, birds, or whatever; and let my mind dwell on what's around me.

Guriru-Do: The Way of the Grill

The Easy Griller, on Guriru-do:
"There is not the griller, the grill, the burgers, and the weather. There is only the grilling."
(August 1, 2007)
Vaguely-related posts:
A tip of the hat to bjinsidescoop, on Twitter, for the heads-up that there was such a thing as grilled raspberry chicken.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Doing Outdoor Grilling Outdoors: What a Concept!

I ran into this post today:
"Outdoor Grilling: Do it Outdoors!"
RecipeTips Blogs (June 30, 2008)

"Those of us who live in the northern latitudes and who have suffered through a particularly brutal winter could hardly wait until we were able to fire up the grill for the first time this past spring. Yes, I know it's possible to use your outdoor grill during the winter months, even in the coldest climates, and many folks in the upper Midwest do just that, but I suspect that a majority of us are not too keen about grilling a steak or flipping a burger outdoors on a breezy January afternoon of minus 10 degrees with a wind chill of 45 below. ... No, personally, I'd much rather wait until the sun is shining, the birds are singing, the temperature is a balmy 60 degrees (hey, that's balmy around here!), and the fruits of my grilling labor can be enjoyed outside on the patio.

"Okay, perhaps a lot of you are thinking: 'During the wintertime, you can always push your grill into the garage and use it in there if you want to feel a bit warmer.' Aha…okay…I know that plenty of people do that very thing, but I wish they wouldn't, because there's just one little point that some people forget when they use their grills inside…IT'S DANGEROUS!!!..."
The photo (the full-size version is on the RecipeTips Blogs post - you're looking at a thumbnail) shows what happened after someone decided to grill chicken in the garage.

That's not the garage, I understand. The garage was (past tense, notice) on the other side of the house.

I'll admit it: I've grilled in the garage. Once or twice. More like in the garage door, actually. Not the best idea, though: the author makes some good points.

For the record, though: grilling in winter, outside, isn't as bad as the author seems to think it is.

I suppose I'm biased, though, since I regard my home, here in central Minnesota, as being 'down south.'

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Another Weekend, and Still Not Grilling

Looks like this will be another weekend when I don't grill. The kids have been excavating the grill, a bit at a time: but that project's been a lower priority than digging out cars and keeping the driveway and sidewalk clear. And properly so.

Besides, I've been a bit off my feed lately. Not sick enough to have any interesting symptoms: just enough to make me a bit careful.

Standing out in a Minnesota winter, standing in the snow while grilling burgers, didn't strike me as a particularly sensible thing to do.

Good heavens: in my late fifties, could I actually be developing an approximation of common sense?

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Got a Master Forge Read-to-Rupture Gas Grill? You Might Want to Read This

I took a look at this post, before releasing it, and decided to leave it 'as-is.'

It's a bit more opinionated, and less lighthearted, than the Easy Griller likes these posts to be, but:
  • You might have one of those ready-to-rupture gas grills
  • I've got a cold
    • And that's making me slightly surly
Here's the start of an article I read today:
"Recalls This Week: Gas Cans, Grills, Computers"
Business, The New York Times (January 8, 2010)

"No-spill gas cans that don't quite live up to their name; gas grills with a hose that could melt and leak propane; and notebook computers with faulty wiring are among the consumer products recalled this week. Here's the weekly roundup...."
The outdoor grilling product is a Master Forge five-burner gas grill, imported form China by LG Sourcing Inc. of North Wilkesboro, North Carolina. About 10,000 units are affected. The problem is that the gas tank hose can melt and rupture. Good news: no injuries have been reported so far. Bad news: there were two reports of melted and ruptured hoses.

LP gas rushing out of a ruptured hose, with an ignition source nearby, isn't something you'd want to be near.

The Times article gives contact information for people who have those grills:While I'm at it, here's the whole list, summarized from The New York Times' article: There's more information about each product, in the article.

I couldn't help noticing that four of the six products listed this week were manufactured in China. And yes: the other two was "made in USA."

Don't get me wrong: quite a few things in my house have "made in China" stamped on them. It's a global economy: things get made all over. And that's okay. Still, China seems to be on a journey of discovery, when it comes to quality control. Or maybe China shows up in these lists so often, because so much stuff sold here in America is manufactured there.

I think that, if China's leaders would spend more time letting manufacturers in their country know that it's a bad idea to sell shoddy and/or dangerous merchandise, and less time worrying about students having computers: we might all benefit.

Not-quite-related posts, in other blogs.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

New Hotel With Internet, Cable - and Outdoor Grilling Area

"Work on Cobblestone Inn to begin in January"
The Vinton Eagle, Iowa (December 30, 2009)

"Cobblestone Inn, the new hotel in Vinton, should be open in the summer of 2010.

Work, said Dave Wessling of Iowa Land Management, is scheduled to begin early in January.

The hotel will be part of a chain called Cobblestone Inn & Suites, which is based in Durand, Wisc. All of the buildings in the hotel chain look very much the same....

Hold it right there!

What in the name of sanity and LP gas is this doing on the Easy Griller blog?!

Skipping toward the end of the article:

"...The new Cobblestone Inn in Vinton will have 31 rooms ... along with an outdoor grilling area, fitness room and wine and beer bar...."

All right! Not about the beer bar: although that's okay.

I mean the outdoor grilling area. Now that's providing a service to travelers!