No matter what type of grill you have, grilling always means cooking food on a grate exposed to high temperatures, usually outside.
The most traditional way of grilling is, however, with charcoal. This is why, in this article, we chose to focus on it, and we’re dealing with how to use a charcoal grill.
How does a charcoal grill work?
So, how does a charcoal grill work? The principle is very simple: you have a layer of pieces of charcoal, and you let them burn.
They develop so much heat that, putting a rack over the charcoal and some food over the rack (or grate), the food will be quickly cooked.
A charcoal grill is, therefore, equipment that provides a space for the charcoal, a grate, and sometimes a smoke control system.
There can also be additional features, like a chimney, cooking tools, a system for gathering the excess oil and fat that leaks from the meat, and so on.
Also Read: 10 Best Small Charcoal Grills
How to use a charcoal grill?
If you are new to charcoal grilling, this is how to use a charcoal grill.
- The first thing you want to do with your new grill is to clean it. Why? Because any chemicals, dirt, or odor that’s on the new grill will end up in the food, you’ll be cooking. This is something you want to recall every time you use your grill: make sure you always clean it properly, or the taste of the food you cook today will end up on the food you cook tomorrow (not ideal if you’re grilling salmon today and pork chops tomorrow!)
- Now it’s time to lay the charcoal: what you need to know is that you need to simply create a layer of charcoal on the provided space.
- You can use a starter to light the charcoal. You can use a fluid lighter: simply spread some on the charcoal.
- Now, this is important: you need to wait for half a minute before lighting the charcoal for safety reasons.
- When half a minute has gone, use a lighter to start the charcoal.
- You can now put the grate over the charcoal and oil with an oiled towel (do not wait too long for doing it because you don’t want to oil the grate when it’s already hot!)
- Now, wait that the charcoal turns white. When it turns white, the temperature is high enough, and you lay your food on the grate.
Grilling is a fast cooking method because it happens at very high temperatures.
However, not every meat or food needs the same time to cook, so check the recipes for how long you should leave the food on the grate (it is usually no longer than 10 minutes, 5 minutes per side).
After you’ve done grilling, clean the grate before it gets cold: it’ll be easier to remove all debris.
Shefali Jain is a Content Editor & Writer at National Planning Cycles.
After completing her graduation in hospitality, Shefali decided to follow her passion and started writing. Shefali has been writing for two years now and contributes to our website as a skilled editor and content writer with strong research skills. Writing product and service reviews, biographies, and book reviews are some of her key areas, among many others in which she specializes.