Thursday, March 11, 2010
With spring quickly approaching, I am looking forward to grilling outdoors once again Just think, long ago, man did all of his cooking outdoors because the stove hadn't been invented yet. I find grilling outdoors to be useful and I enjoy its advantages such as convenience and the flavor and appearance of grilled foods. Let's take a look at some of the benefits of grilling our food outside by choice and see if you don’t agree that cooking outdoors is convenient.
In today's fast paced world, we can all appreciate the need for conveniences, like easy-clean ovens and instant oatmeal. While cooking outdoors isn’t instant, firing up the grill is a great way to avoid having to clean the oven or stove altogether. Also, by using foil and foil pans, you can minimize or do away with dirty dishes altogether. Consider also that when grilling outside, we aren't heating up the kitchen only to have to run the AC to cool it back down. Those of you in the south will appreciate the cool kitchen in the middle of the summer. Also, food that has been grilled properly looks inviting.
Grilling your food outdoors is a great way to prepare great looking food, which makes it look as if it was professionally cooked. Grill marks on sliced pineapple for example, look great and it makes an excellent side dish for chicken or pork. You can also grill veggies, such as asparagus and squash with expert looking results. Chicken that has been slow cooked on a grill will have that nice color of a juicy roasted bird that makes for a perfect backdrop for your carefully placed grill marks. You will never get the beautiful colors and markings on your food while using the oven or stove top. And speaking of results, wait until you taste it.
Nothing beats the flavor of grilled food. A nice steak seared over a hot grill and then cooked to perfection can't be beat for flavor. Searing the meat quickly allows the juices to be locked in, retaining the moisture and flavor of the meat. Grilling also enhances the flavor of vegetables and fruits. Imagine a grilled skewer of banana chunks and pineapple with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or spears of asparagus wrapped in bacon strips and then grilled until crispy. You can also sprinkle soaked wood chips onto the hot briquettes to add a smoked flavor to the food. Smoke enhances the taste of all meats and fish and is used by many professional chefs. You certainly couldn't smoke foods inside the house very well without creating a mess or a fire.
So the next time you are asking yourself what to make for dinner, consider cooking outdoors. Grilling out can be a great excuse to invite guests over for dinner as well and it can be very relaxing. You'll appreciate the clean kitchen, the hassle-free clean up and your food will look and taste great. Besides, nothing tastes better then a nice juicy steak that's been grilled to perfection. I am so looking forward to this spring season.