The Basics Of Charcoal Grilling

Author: John Hack

The basics of charcoal grilling

Summer is grilling season and another opportunity to hone your barbecuing chops. Whether you're a seasoned veteran or an untested rookie, it is always important to brush up on the basics. Beginning with a fundamental charcoal grill is a great way to get ready for the season. With these simple guidelines, a backyard barbecue will be easy and fun way to impress your friends.

Bringing the heat
The first thing you'll need is some charcoal briquettes for your heat source. As a general rule, between 25 and 30 of them will cook a pound of meat. At this point you can either spread the charcoal in a single layer of the grill pan or stack in a pyramid (or in a chimney starter) to help speed up the process. If it is not self-lighting charcoal, you will need to pour some lighter fluid over the briquettes. Then, light them with a grill lighter and let them burn for around 30 minutes.

Get cooking
Once the charcoal is hot, replace the grill grate and place your meat on top of it. Letting it cook in peace and moving it as little as possible, will help it retain its form and cook evenly. If the charcoal gets too hot, sprinkling a little water on top will help bring the temperature down. If it gets too cold, adjusting the charcoal and shaking off ash or adding more briquettes will help.

The fruit of your labor
To make sure your food is done, you can cut it open, taste a bit or use a thermometer. If you are doing more than one batch, adding more charcoal and/or lighter fluid might be necessary. When you're finished, it's important to make sure your charcoal is fully extinguished before discarding it. 

In Brief

  • . Whether you're a seasoned veteran or an untested rookie, it is always important to brush up on the basics.
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