8 Tips For Perfect Barbecued Meat
Barbecued meat is a favorite for us all (unless we’re vegetarian). Possibly, it’s one of the most popular foods for every occasion. Nothing compares the scent of perfect barbecued meat smoke, cooked over burning coals. My Uncle would always cook perfect barbecued meat, but my Aunt would always be left with dry grilled meat, which was often uncooked.
Do you know you are highly likely to get food poisoning from dry, and uncooked meat? When it comes to barbecuing chicken, sausages, kebabs, pork etc, always check that it is cooked properly and is steaming hot. Make sure that the meat is not pink and when you cut into it, there are no bloody juices – they should run clear.
The Food Standards Agency recommends that meat is put in the oven to start with and then placed on the barbecue for the last 10 minutes or so to finish the cooking and give it the distinct flavor of the barbecue. Cooking meat this way works two-fold, it ensures that the meat is safely cooked through and still provides the rich barbecue taste that sets our taste buds on fire.
So, the question remains, how to achieve perfect barbecued meat? Find out some tips only from the best chefs:
Season the Meat An Hour Before Cooking
Decent seasoning is just as crucial as the cooking technique and well known chefs recommend using a good quality sea salt. This is important as this type of salt contains a large amount of minerals and provides the meat with an ‘iron’ flavor. In addition, chefs recommend to mix freshly ground black pepper with a fragrant oil and a sprinkling of paprika, onion flakes, celery seek and a touch of garlic – this sears the meat and produces a mouth-watering crust on the meat.
Our top chefs recommend putting the meat fat side down on the barbecue plate which helps tenderize it. You can also marinate your meat in a good quality stout, add a little treacle, lemon juice, thyme, rose harissa and a touch of garlic. For best results, do this in advance to allow the marinade sufficient time to permeate the meat – 24 hours in advance is good practice.
Light the Coals An Hour Before Grilling
Make sure to cook your meat on the grill over glowing red coals and not over a flame. This will ensure the cooking is consistent and intense. Moreover, hot coals retain a good temperature and this helps in achieving a chard crust and caramelization.
Allow The Meat To Adjust at Room Temperature Before Cooking
After marinating your meat and putting it in the fridge, make sure you take it out an hour before cooking to enable it to reach room temperature. Our chefs say that it will allow you to cook faster and cook the meat evenly. If you cook it cold, the outer part of the meat tends to cook faster and often leads to dried out meat.
Consider Adding Woods Or Herbs for Extra Flavor
That smoky flavor is one of the best things about eating perfect barbecued meat. Adding woods into coals gives a wonderful aroma and more taste. Don’t worry if you don’t have wood because fresh herbs are a perfect substitute.
Cook Over a Gradient Heat
Prior to cooking, make sure your heat is at a gradient level. On one side of your grill, have high hot coals. In the middle section, have the coals at medium height. At the other end of the grill, have your coals at a low level. Place your meat on the high hot coals to sear it and begin caramelizing the marinade. Then move it to the middle of the grill for medium heat cooking.
Rest the Meat Halfway
The best chefs know when to rest meat and recommend that you take it off the grill when it is 10-15 degrees below the safe to eat temperature. This technique allows the meat to continue cooking inside so it evens itself out. Once you have finished cooking, briefly allow it to rest for a second time and then serve immediately.
Allow the Meat to Rest for At Least 10 Minutes After Taking it Off The Grill
Leaving the meat to relax a little after grilling extracts more juices. Moreover, it will also give you time to get all of the sides and sauces on the table before you serve the masterpiece you have just made.
So there you have it. Enjoy your perfect barbecued with a delicious, smoky barbecue flavor we all love.