: Grilling Greatness is in Your Grasp – Smart Neighbor
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Grilling Greatness is in Your Grasp

5 Tips to Up Your Barbecue Game

May is National BBQ Month. It’s also National Hamburger Month. May also features Memorial Day. It’s pretty clear May is a month based around the grill. With summer fast approaching, it’s imperative your grill is cleaned and ready for use. Here are some handy tips and tricks to help showcase your outdoor food prep prowess.

Has it been a while since you’ve fired up your grill? If so, it’s likely your grill and its grates are in need of some attention. No one wants a bun filled with soot and dust. Chemical cleaning agents can also be harmful. Instead, use your own cleaning solution. Mix one part distilled white vinegar and one part water in a spray bottle. Make sure to spray the entire interior. After an hour of soaking, the residue should easily wipe off.

After wiping your grill down, you’ll want to attack the grates with a wire brush to remove any leftover grease or grime. Brushes can break down, though. To prevent a bite filled with bristles, simply swap a tattered brush with a ball of tin foil. Use your tongs to scrub the foil ball over the grate. You should also do this post-cook to prevent any excess buildup.

Charcoal grilling is preferred by many for its unparalleled flavors. However, charcoal can be difficult to start and lighter fluid can alter/ruin the taste of your food. If you do not have a chimney starter, try using a paper egg carton. Place the coals inside the egg carton and light. By the time the paper has burnt off, the coals should be ready to get cooking. (NOT RECOMMENDED FOR STYROFOAM EGG CONTAINERS)

Burgers are a staple. With a wide variety of preferred toppings, your table or prep area can fill up quickly. To save space and keep things organized, use a muffin pan. Having your toppings neatly arranged presents well and also saves potential messes should a summer breeze blow in. Simply cover with plastic wrap to prevent unwanted “guests” from intruding.

Planning on heading to the lake to catch your dinner? Grilled fish is delicious but its flakiness presents a challenge for grilling. To prevent your fish from sticking and crumbling into the fiery coals, slice some citrus fruit. Placing your fish on a “plank” of sliced lemons will provide it ample support and allow you to flip the filet. It also imparts some wonderful flavor.

Take advantage of the longer summer days and become a better BBQer by trying the tips above. Whatever and wherever you choose to grill this summer, stay safe and enjoy!