BBQ seasonWell it looks like BBQ season is in full swing! Last night we grilled some veggies and steak and it was delish! It got me to thinking that I should share some of my good old barbeque tips and tricks with you! Grilling food gives it a taste that we long for mid-winter and the smell of a neighbour’s BBQ gets us envious of their dinner. I’ll be honest, I’ve wondered if an ‘impromptu’ knock at the door, you know just to say hi, might end with a ‘spontaneous’ invite for supper. I did consider knocking on a neighbour’s door with a pie in hand at supper time but then I chickened out!

So here is the deal with the grill. Barbequing our food is great but it brings with it issues to be aware of.

First of all, the cut of the meat is important. Excess fat will cause flare ups and calls to the fire department from worried neighbours. No doubt you will then have to share your dinner with the fire department. Also, hot dogs and burgers are some of those summer time staples we come to expect at summer parties. Here is the scoop – look for the best quality available. Look for nitrate free hot dogs and hamburgers that are locally made. My favourite burgers come from just down the road from my house. The farmer knows the cow they came from and what he put into the burger because he made them himself. Also, from a parent’s perspective, please don’t assume that my child won’t like the grilled chicken breast or steak and compel him to eat the just for kids hot dogs. Eating foods high in vitamin C such as kiwi or oranges will help offset the carcinogens that are formed from the nitrates used to preserve and season hot dogs.

Second, the charring of food creates carcinogenic properties to form in that black crusty stuff. I know, it is sometimes tasty on the edge of the steak, but it really isn’t worth the risk. Research has been conducted showing the potential link between grilled meats and colorectal cancer. Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) form when high temperatures are used to grill meat. PAH’s are also found in car exhaust and cigarette smoke. What can you do to help? It turns out that marinating our meat before hand as well as cooking on a lower temperature helps. In terms of marinade choices, it looks as though beer, wine, tea & vinegar help the most. The marinade that got the best results was dark beer.

See this article for more information…

http://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/pressroom/presspacs/2014/acs-presspac-march-26-2014/beer-marinade-could-reduce-levels-of-potentially-harmful-substances-in-grilled-meats.html

How did I marinate my steak you might be asking yourself? Let me tell you…

Steak Marinade
1/2 c. soya sauce
2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 c. water
1 tbsp. brown sugar
Mix the ingredients in a small cup & poured it over the meat in the morning.
Store in refrigerator until ready to grill.

Third tip is that pretty much anything tastes yummy when grilled. Brush a halved tomato, pepper or eggplant with grape seed oil, sprinkle a little sea salt and some oregano for a simple and easy side dish. You can also try it with fruit such as a peach, plum or pineapple spritzed with grape seed oil and then grilled. It is super quick and oh so tasty! Plan to grill for about 5 minutes.

I would love to hear some of your BBQ tips and tricks… Share below in the comments!