Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Summer Of Oldnerd: New Grill

Please ignore the gendered cultural connotations.
Last summer, nothing happened. Nothing happened because the summer was consumed with garage repair. The garage repair meant deck replacement, because the deck sits on top of the garage. Which is super cool most of the time except this one time when it wasn’t.

As someone who vastly prefers indoors to outdoors, I use the deck for things I can’t do inside, and those things, me being me, are food related. So outdoor cooking and outdoor herb and vegetable growing.

The grill I bought when we bought the house was good. I turned it into a combination grill and smoker, then liked smoking so much I bought a proper smoker. Which left me with a grill with bits hanging off it I didn’t need, plus a shit-ton of rust. So, I got rid of it as part of the deck replacement, planning to do my nerd diligence and find a new one for this year. AND SO I HAVE.

It’s a charcoal grill, because if I wanted to cook on gas burners, I have a stove inside for that shit. It’s as much stainless steel as I could find on a charcoal grill, because rust blows. On a related note, the grates are enameled cast iron, because cast iron is king, but I don’t cook outside often enough to really keep cast iron properly seasoned without a ton of effort. So enameled itis.

It has two separate adjustable baskets for the charcoal. You can raise them, lower them, add coals to them, etc. all without removing the grates. Initially oading them from the front doors is difficult, but it’s also pointless, so that’s not an issue. The ash tray is large and removable, which is great - one of the issues I had with the old gril was a lot of spillage from the ash tray into the barrel of the grill, making it tough to keep clean.

It has lots of ways to adjust heat levels and air flow, which means flexibility, which is good. WHen the baskets are cranked all the way to the top, the coals are very close to the food, making it suitable for things like yakitori where you want very close, very hot coals.

To date, I’ve only cooked one meal on it, but it worked fine with both soy-glazed chicken and Szechuan-style green beans in a grill basket. Tomorrow I’ll probably use it for lamb burgers.

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