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I want to be your go-to guy when it comes to mastering your kitchen, and giving your food a heap of personality – but with simplicity, of course. Here are some of my summer grilling tips to help you master the grill.
Don’t be afraid to throw vegetables on the grill and get a nice char on them. It draws out so much flavor.
Also, get to know your grilling vegetables. For example, potatoes are dense and take longer to cook; so, to prevent burning, sear them on the outside and move them to a cooler place on the grill.
And for less mess, wrap some chopped veggies in foil packets with some olive oil, herbs and lemon juice. Incredible! I actually throw in some wine, too. I mean, why not? If you’re grilling, you’re probably drinking, too.
Quick 6 Tips to Grilling
1. How do I know if my grill is hot enough? Do the hand test. Place the palm of your hand five to six inches over the heat. If you need to remove your hand after two to three seconds, you’re good to go. A good “rule of palm” is two to three seconds for hot, five seconds is medium, and 10 seconds is low.
2. Gas or charcoal? Gas grilling is definitely healthier for you as the coals emit carbon monoxide. When it comes to taste though, charcoal wins out. You have to make the choice, but neither one is necessarily “better.”
3. When cooking meat, after you take it off the grill, let it rest for a few minutes so the moisture stays inside.
4. Avoid flare-ups. Choose leaner cuts of meat, or trim the fat so your food doesn’t char.
5. Is your meat done? Always use a thermometer when checking your meat. Here is a quick guideline. The minimum internal temperature of ground beef is 160°F, and Chicken must reach 165°F.
6. When you’re done cooking, clean off the grill while it’s still warm. It’s a lot easier.
Stu’s Sticky Ribs
Ask anyone who knows me, they’ll tell you my number one food of all time is ribs. I live for them. I could be on an island for the rest of my life with just ribs and be perfectly happy. Best of all, I love eating ribs with a small bit of chew on them. I get so much satisfaction from cooking and eating these babies.
PREP: 6 minutes
COOK: 60 minutes
CLEAN: 6 minutes
Side suggestions: BBQ Baked beans and Oven-Roasted Fries
24 pork spare ribs
1 1” piece ginger, sliced
4 cloves garlic, smashed
1 cup hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce
1 teaspoon Chinese five spice
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add spare ribs, garlic and ginger, bring back to a boil, and let simmer for 20 minutes. Take off heat and let sit for five minutes.
3. Meanwhile in a saucepan, combine hoisin sauce, vinegar, soy sauce, five spice and brown sugar. Heat until sugar is dissolved and sauce is smooth.
4. Drain ribs and pat dry with paper towels. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place ribs on sheet and brush liberally with marinade.
5. Place in oven and roast for 30 minutes, basting at 15 minutes with more marinade.
6. If you have a grill lit (not necessary), throw ribs on the grill for 3 -5 minutes to caramelize that great sauce.
7. Serve on a platter and spoon extra sauce on top. You can sprinkle with sesame seeds if you have them in the cupboard.
Stuart’s Perfect Marinade
This is the only marinade you’ll need this summer.
½ cup soy sauce
½ cup port wine
½ cup balsamic vinegar
½ teaspoon chili flakes
1. Combine all ingredients in a Ziploc bag with your meat of choice. Marinade for at least 30 minutes.
2. Remove meat from marinade, place on the grill and cook to your desired (lack of) tenderness.
3. Pour the marinade from the Ziploc bag into a saucepan and reduce by half over medium heat for about 10 minutes. Brush on meat when resting after grilling.