When should I grill?
Say the word ‘barbecue’ and most people’s minds will go to grilling. Nothing wrong there. While Big Green Egg has helped redefine the Great British Barbecue, by making a whole host of other cooking modes possible outdoors, there’s something about direct contact between food and fire that’s hard to beat.
Generally, your aim when grilling is to brown and caramelise the outside of your food. This happens most effectively in the 180˚C-250˚C range, cooking for 20 minutes or less directly over the charcoal. If you're cooking for longer than that or at a lower temperature, consider roasting instead.
Choose your surface
Stainless Steel Grids, Cast Iron Searing Grids and Skillets will all produce different results so choose wisely. If you’re grilling lots of elements, you may even want to consider chopping and changing mid-cook (taking care when handling hot surfaces of course). Tom Kerridge’s T-bone steak with charred vegetables is a good recipe to try this with.
Setting up to grill on your EGG is extremely easy. Load and light your EGG, get it to around 200˚C, then simply add your chosen cooking surface on top of the Fire Ring.
Small tweaks to the way you grill can make a world of difference when it comes to flavour. Consider choosing a charcoal that pairs well with your ingredients, use a meat probe to guarantee consistent results or experiment with chips and chunks to take your grilling to the next level.
Close the lid
While the sight of someone standing over a barbecue poking and proding their ingredients may be familiar, it is a completely ineffectual method when it comes to grilling on the EGG.
An open lid makes for unpredictable flames, excessively hot temperatures and an uneven cook. So the key here is to grill with the lid down, however counterintuitive that may feel. Doing so locks both flavour and moisture in. As our US counterparts say: if you’re lookin’, you ain’t cookin’!
Types of Grilling
Grilling tends to be the first thing people think of when they think of barbecueing. It's a great way to cook and can take many forms. We usually grill on a Cast Iron Grid or a la plancha — literally "on a metal plate" — depending on whether we want charlines or an even crust. Even "Dirty" cooking is Grilling in essence: where you lay your food directly on the charcoal.