Barbeque Tips from a Grill Master


With summer here and Father’s Day approaching, it seems natural to think of the domain where dads rule: Grilling. This is the season when the patio or deck is beckoning to us (after all, the plants outside haven’t died of heat and neglect yet) and we have a better than usual excuse to turn dinner over to dad.

Heath Wade is a Birmingham Dad of twins whose “real job” is recruiting and placing IT professionals through his firm, Technical Staffing Solutions. However, his growing reputation as a barbeque man has him booking weekends catering all sorts of parties, corporate events and fundraisers. Heath says folks want to talk about barbeque as much as they want to discuss their staffing needs, so I figured Heath had some tips he could share with us. Yes, BirminghamMoms can use these tips, but we’d rather leave these to the dads while we sit and observe with a cool beverage.

Heath’s Basic BBQ Tips

1. Keep your grill/smoker cooking grate clean – Besides using a good grill brush, you can take a sheet of aluminum foil and crunch it up into a ball. Take the ball of foil and rub it over the grill cooking grates and it works just as good if not better than the brush.

2. Get organized – Have all your spices, sauces, BBQ utensils, and other items needed for cooking by your grill. This will cut down on trips back inside and leaving the grill unattended during times when you need to be close to the grill.

3. Preparing meat for the grill – Take meat out of the refrigerator for 30 to 35 minutes so it reached room temperature before placing on the grill. This will allow the meat to cook more evenly.

4. Handling meat on the grill – Always use a spatula or tongs to turn the meat or remove it from the grill when it is done. This will prevent any loss of juice from using a fork.

5. Resting the meat – Always let the meat rest after you have finished cooking and it has reached the desired doneness. Steaks need to rest for 5 minutes and larger cuts of meat like Boston Butts and Turkeys should rest for 30 minutes. By letting the meat rest the juices will redistribute throughout the entire piece of meat.

Important Items Needed for Summer BBQ Season

1. Meat Thermometer – A meat thermometer is a necessity when cooking chicken and pork to make sure the meat has reached the proper doneness.

2. Grill Gloves – Grill gloves will save you from plenty of burns while working over a hot fire.

3. Spray Bottle – Keep a spray bottle or cup filled with water near the grill in case you have to put out the occasional flare up.

4. Multiple Pans – Always utilize one plate/pan for bringing out your raw meat to the grill and a separate pan for placing the meat on once it is done. This will cut out any chance of contamination.

Finishing Touches on Steak & Chicken

The next time you cook steaks or chicken breasts try these following simple recipes at the end of the cooking process to add some great flavor to your finished meal.

Steak – Mix a tablespoon of butter with a tablespoon of crumbled Blue Cheese (Gorgonzola Cheese works well also). A few minutes before the steaks are done on the grill, place half of this mixture on the center of your steak and let melt. Use the whole amount if you like, depending on your tastes.

Chicken – Mix two tablespoons of butter with a couple of dashes of your favorite BBQ rub or herbs. Melt the mixture and rub on the chicken towards the end of the cooking process. This will give the chicken a good flavor and also help keep it from drying it out towards the end of the cooking process.

Thanks, Heath, for sharing some of your BBQ tips. I’m guessing you’re in charge of dinner on Father’s Day and that suits your family just fine!

Heath has a barbeque blog at: www.smokeandfire.typepad.com/the_bbq_pit_blog