Friday, February 8, 2008

Surf and Turf: Products for Your Pool and Patio


Many serious barbeque lovers know how to improve or alter the taste of the meats they grill. This can be done in a few different fashions. The fuel that is used to burn is one point to consider. Charcoal or wood is the main form of flavor. Gas typically is a sure way to get the burn started faster, but the taste is arguably less favorable.

Wood is a great way to impart a unique flavor to the meat by circulating its smoke within the bbq grill. There are many wood types to use with the bbq grill, but all of them should be deciduous hard woods rather than coniferous (like pine wood). Woods like pine contain tars and resins that impart a chemical taste to the meat.

Such types of wood that are used in barbeques are:

Maple
Mesquite
Cherry Wood
Apple Wood
Oak

Charcoal is another fuel source that is enjoyed by barbeque enthusiasts. This comes in several forms, but it is nearly all carbon. It is actually made from wood that was burned. Occasionally additives, like clay and nitrates are included to make the burn stay longer in your bbq grill.

Charcoal, like wood, imparts the flavor from the smoke it produces. Charcoal and wood are often combined in the grill to do this. It's debatable what type of smoke create the flavor, white smoke or the thin blue smoke, but some will use water to create a thicker smoke or use a smoker separately for a deeper taste.

In addition to fuel types for flavor, meat marinades and flavor rubs are used for enhancement. The assortment of flavors and combinations are endless. The flavors are often geographical and culturally based, everything from Jamaican Jerk marinade, to Mexican Chipotle salt rub, the flavor emanates into the meat as it hits the bbq grill.

Grilling is not Barbeque; Taste the Difference

Many think that barbeque is simply putting flame to a bbq grill and searing steaks up within a 15 minute span. The actual method and flavor is rarely experienced, especially in the northern states.

American style barbeque was initially developed in the south, and if you ask most cooks in Texas how to define the difference between the two, they would explain there is a world of difference in taste.

Barbeque is simply a much more enriching smoke flavor. The difference is the heat source and intensity. With grilling is simply cooking food over the flame directly; it maybe takes about 15 minutes or so for a steak. Barbeque is a much lower heat, using indirect heat and tons of smoke.

Meats that are cooked this way can take several hours, a full day even. This time allows the wood smoke to fully penetrate the meat, which makes a remarkable different end result.

By: Art Gib

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