When the sun comes out, I love to invite my friends and family over for a fun and relaxing backyard barbecue. While the grill is typically thought of a man’s domain, I want to show every woman out there that girls can grill too! These tips will help you make delicious and simple family-friendly fare that is sure to make your loved ones come back for seconds. And I’m not just talking about the summer classics like hamburgers and hot dogs. With these suggestions, you’ll soon be the master of barbecue chicken, gourmet grilled vegetables -- even grilled dessert. So lovingly pry the spatula from the hands of the man hogging the barbecue, and get to grilling!
Top 7 Grilling Tips
1. Grill Safely
Before firing up the grill, make sure you tie back long hair, and remove any necklaces, bracelets, or articles of clothing that may get in the way.
2. Learn to Love Your Chimney Starter
Skip the expense and hassle of gas grills and lighter fluid with a chimney starter. This handy device (about $13, hardware stores) is perfect for a charcoal grill - which also adds great flavor to your food. Simply place a crumpled up piece of newspaper in the bottom of the starter, fill it with charcoal, and ignite the newspaper through the designated holes at the bottom. Within 10 minutes, you'll see the charcoal get red and ashy on the inside and gray on the top. Your chimney starter's convenient handle makes it easy to dump the hot charcoal into your grill.
3. Go Au Natural
Use hardwood lump charcoal instead of traditional briquettes. The briquettes emit chemicalswhen burned that can get into your food. Hardwood charcoal is all natural and will keepyour cooking safe.
4. Discover Chicken
Grilled chicken is easy, delicious, and a lighter alternative to cheeseburgers and hot dogs. And by cooking chicken on the bone, you will end up with a succulent and tender dish. Start with a bone-in butterflied whole chicken. Brush on your favorite marinade, or create your own with a bit of olive oil, salt, chili powder, garlic salt, and paprika. Cook for about 10-15 minutes on both sides or until a meat thermometer reads 160°F.
5. Save Some Money with Hangar Steak
If you love a good grilled steak, but don't want to fork over the cash for filet mignon, pick up a hangar steak. This less expensive cut of meat is just as flavorful as filet and is truly divine paired with a spicy jalapeño butter.
6. Eat Your Vegetables
Grilled vegetables make for a healthy and tasty side dish at any barbeque. Drizzle with some olive oil, salt, and black pepper, and grill until tender and slightly browned. Onions, eggplant, and radicchio are delicious grilled, and peppers, mushrooms, and zucchini make excellent kabobs.
7. Don't Forget Dessert
There is no better way to end a satisfying barbeque than by serving a yummy dessert hot off the grill. Brush sliced pineapple, peaches, plums, or apricots with a touch of olive oil, grill until nicely browned, and then top with a scoop of coconut ice cream and a drizzle of caramel sauce.