Great summer meals are easy and delicious. Just remember to follow these simple recipes and hints every time you fire up the grill.
Never underestimate the power of a marinade. Marinades contain varied amounts of seasonings, sometimes oil, and always acid; they are used to season and to tenderize. Marinades are a means of spreading flavor by immersion. The soaking period might vary from only a few minutes to many hours. Refrigerate any foods in their marinade if the immersion period is one hour or more.
- Try mixing oil and vinegar with packaged dried salad seasonings to achieve a quick prepared marinade for meats or vegetables.
- Grilled garlic slices: Melt a little butter in shallow pan over grill. Add garlic powder or minced garlic to taste. Toast thick slices of French bread on grill. Dip into garlic butter. Serve hot.
- Roasted corn: Pull husks back enough to remove silk. Pull husks forward again to cover corn. Soak corn in water about 20 minutes. This prevents husks from burning during grilling. Roast drained ears over hot coals 15 to 20 minutes or till corn is tender, turning ears frequently; season with salt, pepper and butter.
- Foiled vegetables: Place one block of frozen vegetables on a large square of foil; season as desired. Top with pat of butter then wrap, leaving room for expansion of steam. Cook over hot coals 10 to 15 minutes; turn occasionally.
Great summer meals are easy and delicious when keeping these tips in mind:
- Defrost meats overnight in the refrigerator, never at room temperature.
- Keep meats refrigerated until grilling time, although meat may be allowed rest time before being put on the grill. Do not allow more than an hour of rest time.
- Keep meat and meat juices from coming into contact with other foods during preparation. Never use the unwashed plate that held raw meat to serve the cooked meat.
- Wash hands, utensils, cutting boards and counters with hot, soapy water after contact with raw meats and other fresh foods.
- Burn coals to the proper cooking temperature. Medium, ash-covered coals ensure even cooking throughout. Allow about 30 minutes for coals to reach a medium temperature.
- Turn steaks with tongs. Do not use a fork, which pierces the meat and allows flavorful juices to escape.
- Consume perishable foods within two hours of preparation, one hour if outside in temperatures above 90 degrees.