Author Topic: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here  (Read 20913 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #45 on: May 18, 2013, 09:05:52 PM »

Offline indeedproceed

  • In The Rafters
  • James Naismith
  • *********************************
  • Posts: 41431
  • Tommy Points: 2294
  • You ain't the boss of the freakin' bedclothes.
IP's easy side vegetable crowd-pleaser that people don't expect but will immediately love: Grilled Eggplant

Grilled eggplant is an easy thing to make that takes little time to prepare, and little time to cook, and is hard to mess up. It's also healthy, and delicious. If you've had eggplant before and didn't like it, I'll still maintain if you haven't tried this yet, you'll love it. Eggplant is often cooked incorrectly. 

You make this when you're making something that requires hot heat (like chicken breasts, steaks, or, like I did tonight, grilled swordfish (see above; that recipe is a winner). There are tons of things you cook on high heat).

Step 1: make your fire in your trusty weber grill. This is one time when lighter fluid is okay (if using a gas grill, skip this step. Just pick whichever side of your grill the wind is coming from, and turn it up to get it real toasty). I like to use lump charcoal, not the old standby briquette because lump charcoal burns HOT. Buy a cheap bag, you don't need gourmet stuff here, it won't help.

Make a good sized pile so that it ends up between an inch and an inch and a half below your cooking grate, soak that mother like you're commuting arson with lighter fluid, and light it. Now you have about 20 minutes to do something else.

2) While your grill is warming up, take an eggplant and starting at the bottom, slice it into quarter to half inch slices, angling it a little like you're carving beef. Put them in a deep stock-pot and liberally throw salt on top. Then, pour water on top, hot from the tap, just enough to make sure all the pieces are floating. Then, find something that fits inside the stock-pot (I use a small plate) and put it on top of the floating pieces, then put something on top of that (I use my teakettle) to weigh it down. The trick is to make sure you're completely submerging the eggplant.

3) Time passes, you cook your entree over the now-ready coals. Your grill should look like this:


4) your entree is done, now you cook your eggplant. Take the whole stockpot outside, water and all. Leaving the grill uncovered, put the eggplant directly above the coals. If you have time, you can pat each piece dry before with a paper towel and brush with olive oil, but it'll still be good without it.

5) give the pieces (again, uncovered) about 4-7 minutes on each side. You'll know it's time to flip them when they get good black grill marks. Once both sides are beautifully scored, you're done. The only tip Id add is to be careful not to overload the grill. Only put as many pieces on at a time as you have room over the coals. It's worth it to do two batches.

6) put all the pieces on a plate. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle cracked pepper and parm cheese. Not a lot, just enough so everyone gets some.

Serve. Looks like this (not my picture):


"You've gotta respect a 15-percent 3-point shooter. A guy
like that is always lethal." - Evan 'The God' Turner

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #46 on: May 18, 2013, 09:10:27 PM »

Offline chicagoceltic

  • Gordon Hayward
  • Posts: 517
  • Tommy Points: 70
OK, I will jump in as I love all things food and drink and especially love grilling and smoking.  My #1suggestion to enhance a number of things on a grill (especially things that dry out like pork and poultry) is to brine your food before grilling.  A brine is simply a salty solution that will make your pork/chicken/turkey more most and flavorful than you may have ever had.  For a simple brine you dissolve 1 cup of salt per gallon of water, let is come to room temp then submerged whatever you are going to grill, refrigerate it for at least a few hours to overnight for a whole turkey.  You can add other flavorings like sugar, garlic, spices etc...  If you are the cookbook type check out a book called Charcuterie by Michael Rhulman for more info.  After you are done brining rinse thoroughly and grill away.  If you haven't tried this before give it a go and I think you will be pleasantly surprised.  If is very forgiving too so if you have a few drinks too many and overcook your food you will still be ok.  Second quick tip is for crispy skin on poultry leave the chicken/turkey uncovered in the refrigerator overnight after brining.
Pub Draft

Sam N Ella's

At the Bar: The Most Interesting Man in the World
At the Door:  Hugh Hefner
On Stage:  O.A.R., Louis C.K., EDGAR! Special Drinks:  Irish Car Bomb, Martinis On Tap: Lite, Beamish, 3 Floyds Seasonal, Chimay Grand Reserve, Spotted Cow

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #47 on: May 18, 2013, 09:19:20 PM »

Offline indeedproceed

  • In The Rafters
  • James Naismith
  • *********************************
  • Posts: 41431
  • Tommy Points: 2294
  • You ain't the boss of the freakin' bedclothes.
Chicagoceltic just gave everyone a magical gift that will totally change your boneless chicken breast (bscb) forever and ever and ever.

The only thing that Id add is that you shouldn't brine bscb longer than a few hours. Here's my method:

1) boil 1 pint glass of water in a sauce pan. Pour in 3/4 cup coarse kosher salt, 3/4 cup table sugar, continue to boil until totally dissolved.

2) in a stock-pot, pour in 2 more pint glasses warm but not hot water. Add 1 coarsely chopped onion (like you'd put on a pizza), 3-4 cloves crushed garlic, 1 tablespoon cinnomon or if you have it, Chinese 5-spice powder, and...and this is important, 2 tablespoons tumerick.

3) put in your bscb, then a good amount of ice.

4) pour in salt/sugar mixture, and stir the whole thing around a few times

5) let sit for 30 minutes or so. If you make it before you light your charcoal, it should be just about done by the time the charcoal is ready.

"You've gotta respect a 15-percent 3-point shooter. A guy
like that is always lethal." - Evan 'The God' Turner

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #48 on: May 19, 2013, 01:22:27 PM »

Offline KGs Knee

  • Satch Sanders
  • *********
  • Posts: 9437
  • Tommy Points: 1047
Definitely good call on "brining" meat before you cook.

I generally just throw some warm water a salt together in a ziplock bag, toss in my meat, then throw in the fridge for a couple hours.  No need to get fancy here, although I suppose with more effort the results might be marginally better.

One thing I like to do, since I don't have a true "smoker", is to get woodchips soak them in cider and place them in an aluminum foil "pouch" next to the coals.  I've had pretty good success with this method.

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #49 on: May 19, 2013, 03:06:28 PM »

Offline indeedproceed

  • In The Rafters
  • James Naismith
  • *********************************
  • Posts: 41431
  • Tommy Points: 2294
  • You ain't the boss of the freakin' bedclothes.
Definitely good call on "brining" meat before you cook.

I generally just throw some warm water a salt together in a ziplock bag, toss in my meat, then throw in the fridge for a couple hours.  No need to get fancy here, although I suppose with more effort the results might be marginally better.

One thing I like to do, since I don't have a true "smoker", is to get woodchips soak them in cider and place them in an aluminum foil "pouch" next to the coals.  I've had pretty good success with this method.

I used to do the same thing (I'd do sugar and salt, instead of just salt, but basically the same method). It's def got its merits, and usually you're right (about not getting fancy) because the thing about brine is that only water-soluable ingredients will penetrate the meat (that's why you boil the salt/sugar mixture; it makes it go completely in solution, which means it gets deeper into the meat). In my case above though, I maintain its an exception. You'll get a way better bscb than just a marginal improvement.

So in the one I put above (salt, sugar, onions, garlic, cinnamon, tumerick, and I also put in cumin, I forgot cumin), the salt and sugar will be the best absorbed, followed by oil from the onions and garlic. Cinnamon and tumerick will mostly just stick around the top few layers of meat.

But in my brine, that's by design. The salt-sugar does what you think they do (make things delicious) while the onions/garlic give the BSCB some taste, a thing the cut of meat is seriously lacking, and the cinnamon/tumerick/sugar create a beautiful coloring/taste/caremelization on the outer layer.

"You've gotta respect a 15-percent 3-point shooter. A guy
like that is always lethal." - Evan 'The God' Turner

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #50 on: May 20, 2013, 12:24:01 AM »

Offline KGs Knee

  • Satch Sanders
  • *********
  • Posts: 9437
  • Tommy Points: 1047
Definitely good call on "brining" meat before you cook.

I generally just throw some warm water a salt together in a ziplock bag, toss in my meat, then throw in the fridge for a couple hours.  No need to get fancy here, although I suppose with more effort the results might be marginally better.

One thing I like to do, since I don't have a true "smoker", is to get woodchips soak them in cider and place them in an aluminum foil "pouch" next to the coals.  I've had pretty good success with this method.

I used to do the same thing (I'd do sugar and salt, instead of just salt, but basically the same method). It's def got its merits, and usually you're right (about not getting fancy) because the thing about brine is that only water-soluable ingredients will penetrate the meat (that's why you boil the salt/sugar mixture; it makes it go completely in solution, which means it gets deeper into the meat). In my case above though, I maintain its an exception. You'll get a way better bscb than just a marginal improvement.

So in the one I put above (salt, sugar, onions, garlic, cinnamon, tumerick, and I also put in cumin, I forgot cumin), the salt and sugar will be the best absorbed, followed by oil from the onions and garlic. Cinnamon and tumerick will mostly just stick around the top few layers of meat.

But in my brine, that's by design. The salt-sugar does what you think they do (make things delicious) while the onions/garlic give the BSCB some taste, a thing the cut of meat is seriously lacking, and the cinnamon/tumerick/sugar create a beautiful coloring/taste/caremelization on the outer layer.

This in all likelihood true.  Personally, I'm a simple man.  I guess I do like to do some fancy stuff sometimes, maybe I'll give it a go.

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #51 on: May 20, 2013, 01:32:38 AM »

Offline Emmette Bryant

  • Kyrie Irving
  • Posts: 949
  • Tommy Points: 146
IP's easy side vegetable crowd-pleaser that people don't expect but will immediately love: Grilled Eggplant

Grilled eggplant is an easy thing to make that takes little time to prepare, and little time to cook, and is hard to mess up. It's also healthy, and delicious. If you've had eggplant before and didn't like it, I'll still maintain if you haven't tried this yet, you'll love it. Eggplant is often cooked incorrectly. 

You make this when you're making something that requires hot heat (like chicken breasts, steaks, or, like I did tonight, grilled swordfish (see above; that recipe is a winner). There are tons of things you cook on high heat).

Step 1: make your fire in your trusty weber grill. This is one time when lighter fluid is okay (if using a gas grill, skip this step. Just pick whichever side of your grill the wind is coming from, and turn it up to get it real toasty). I like to use lump charcoal, not the old standby briquette because lump charcoal burns HOT. Buy a cheap bag, you don't need gourmet stuff here, it won't help.

Make a good sized pile so that it ends up between an inch and an inch and a half below your cooking grate, soak that mother like you're commuting arson with lighter fluid, and light it. Now you have about 20 minutes to do something else.

2) While your grill is warming up, take an eggplant and starting at the bottom, slice it into quarter to half inch slices, angling it a little like you're carving beef. Put them in a deep stock-pot and liberally throw salt on top. Then, pour water on top, hot from the tap, just enough to make sure all the pieces are floating. Then, find something that fits inside the stock-pot (I use a small plate) and put it on top of the floating pieces, then put something on top of that (I use my teakettle) to weigh it down. The trick is to make sure you're completely submerging the eggplant.

3) Time passes, you cook your entree over the now-ready coals. Your grill should look like this:


4) your entree is done, now you cook your eggplant. Take the whole stockpot outside, water and all. Leaving the grill uncovered, put the eggplant directly above the coals. If you have time, you can pat each piece dry before with a paper towel and brush with olive oil, but it'll still be good without it.

5) give the pieces (again, uncovered) about 4-7 minutes on each side. You'll know it's time to flip them when they get good black grill marks. Once both sides are beautifully scored, you're done. The only tip Id add is to be careful not to overload the grill. Only put as many pieces on at a time as you have room over the coals. It's worth it to do two batches.

6) put all the pieces on a plate. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle cracked pepper and parm cheese. Not a lot, just enough so everyone gets some.

Serve. Looks like this (not my picture):


Grilled eggplant is the real deal.  And the greatest sandwich of all time is when you put the eggplant between two slices of good Italian bread.

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #52 on: May 20, 2013, 01:56:35 AM »

Offline Emmette Bryant

  • Kyrie Irving
  • Posts: 949
  • Tommy Points: 146
My greatest accomplishment is my beer can turkey.  I have a ceramic vertical roaster that I pour 2 bottles of whatever beer I have around the house. 

I rub the turkey with olive oil and rub it with a mixture of salt, pepper, paprika, and brown sugar. I separate the skin from the meat is several places and place cloves of garlic and whatever fresh herbs I have in there.

I place the turkey on top of the roaster and put it in my smoker.

We had BCT for lunch today.  I cooked a 12 pound turkey and it only took three hours before the internal temperature was 170 degrees F.

Crispy and crunchy on the outside, soft and juicy on the inside.  Why wait for Thanksgiving?

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #53 on: May 20, 2013, 02:30:53 AM »

Offline Kiorrik

  • Global Moderator
  • Tiny Archibald
  • *******
  • Posts: 7793
  • Tommy Points: 1082
  • pɹɐnƃ ʇuıod
Redz speaks the truth! All hail the 3-3-2-2 method for swordfish steaks!!!



Nice!
Wicked.

This thread needs _WAY_ more pictures btw. C'mon guys. It's 2013. Instagram it up a bit.

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #54 on: May 21, 2013, 09:24:00 PM »

Offline Redz

  • Punner
  • Global Moderator
  • John Havlicek
  • ****************************
  • Posts: 28164
  • Tommy Points: 5409
  • Yup ya do
IP I'm willing to give that eggplant a go, but in my book the eggplant parm is really the only true option for eggplant!


Are they almost like a steak with those dimensions?

And I went ahead order Charcuterie by Michael Rhulman.  My wife is more the briner and pork rub creator.  I just do the mastery on the grill from there.

2017 PAPOUG CHAMPION

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #55 on: May 21, 2013, 09:26:48 PM »

Offline Redz

  • Punner
  • Global Moderator
  • John Havlicek
  • ****************************
  • Posts: 28164
  • Tommy Points: 5409
  • Yup ya do
Redz speaks the truth! All hail the 3-3-2-2 method for swordfish steaks!!!



Nice!
Wicked.

This thread needs _WAY_ more pictures btw. C'mon guys. It's 2013. Instagram it up a bit.

How thick of a cut was that IP?  Ideally you want almost an inch (though they get pricy in a hurry if you're serving more than a couple).

2017 PAPOUG CHAMPION

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #56 on: May 21, 2013, 09:35:38 PM »

Offline indeedproceed

  • In The Rafters
  • James Naismith
  • *********************************
  • Posts: 41431
  • Tommy Points: 2294
  • You ain't the boss of the freakin' bedclothes.
IP I'm willing to give that eggplant a go, but in my book the eggplant parm is really the only true option for eggplant!


Are they almost like a steak with those dimensions?

And I went ahead order Charcuterie by Michael Rhulman.  My wife is more the briner and pork rub creator.  I just do the mastery on the grill from there.

I'd say you want them to be a little thinner than a slice of wonder-bread. The whole goal here is to cook the eggplant on high heat, enough to crisp the outside, but it leaves the inside creamy.

The creamy part is critical. When making it the first time, turn the grill up super high, remember to leave the top uncovered, and don't leave them. You only have to give this much of a crap the first time, after that you'll know how long to give them on each side. After a about 3 minutes, start checking them, and when you can see clear defined grill marks, flip them. Do the same on the other side, and once you think one is done, try it. If the texture on the inside is creamy and delicious, you know they're done. The first time might have some mixed results where you get a few that are spongy (under done), but that's to be expected.

As far as size goes, you don't want them to be too big, but not too small. For a good frame of reference, make a 'c' shape with your forefinger and thumb, so it's almost a perfect half circle. Now envision the other half is there, and that's the size you're going for. About the size of a McDonald's hamburger patty. If you have Rondo-sized hands, just go for the McDonald's party. About that thick too.

Once you do it once, you'll know the method and it will become an afterthought. Good luck and remember, we're all counting on you.

"You've gotta respect a 15-percent 3-point shooter. A guy
like that is always lethal." - Evan 'The God' Turner

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #57 on: May 21, 2013, 09:38:27 PM »

Offline indeedproceed

  • In The Rafters
  • James Naismith
  • *********************************
  • Posts: 41431
  • Tommy Points: 2294
  • You ain't the boss of the freakin' bedclothes.
Redz speaks the truth! All hail the 3-3-2-2 method for swordfish steaks!!!



Nice!
Wicked.

This thread needs _WAY_ more pictures btw. C'mon guys. It's 2013. Instagram it up a bit.

How thick of a cut was that IP?  Ideally you want almost an inch (though they get pricy in a hurry if you're serving more than a couple).

Yeah, they were about an inch and a quarter (although Im terrible at doing this). $9.99 a pound too, so not something I can splurge on too often.

Soooooo worth it though. You gotta try it on charcoal Redz. It really took to the smoke.

"You've gotta respect a 15-percent 3-point shooter. A guy
like that is always lethal." - Evan 'The God' Turner

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #58 on: May 21, 2013, 09:39:49 PM »

Offline Redz

  • Punner
  • Global Moderator
  • John Havlicek
  • ****************************
  • Posts: 28164
  • Tommy Points: 5409
  • Yup ya do
IP I'm willing to give that eggplant a go, but in my book the eggplant parm is really the only true option for eggplant!


Are they almost like a steak with those dimensions?

And I went ahead order Charcuterie by Michael Rhulman.  My wife is more the briner and pork rub creator.  I just do the mastery on the grill from there.

I'd say you want them to be a little thinner than a slice of wonder-bread. The whole goal here is to cook the eggplant on high heat, enough to crisp the outside, but it leaves the inside creamy.

The creamy part is critical. When making it the first time, turn the grill up super high, remember to leave the top uncovered, and don't leave them. You only have to give this much of a crap the first time, after that you'll know how long to give them on each side. After a about 3 minutes, start checking them, and when you can see clear defined grill marks, flip them. Do the same on the other side, and once you think one is done, try it. If the texture on the inside is creamy and delicious, you know they're done. The first time might have some mixed results where you get a few that are spongy (under done), but that's to be expected.

As far as size goes, you don't want them to be too big, but not too small. For a good frame of reference, make a 'c' shape with your forefinger and thumb, so it's almost a perfect half circle. Now envision the other half is there, and that's the size you're going for. About the size of a McDonald's hamburger patty. If you have Rondo-sized hands, just go for the McDonald's party. About that thick too.

Once you do it once, you'll know the method and it will become an afterthought. Good luck and remember, we're all counting on you.

Oh, and how long do I submerge the eggplant (I gots a gas grill)

2017 PAPOUG CHAMPION

Re: discuss your grilling triumphs, failures, and plans here
« Reply #59 on: May 21, 2013, 09:56:10 PM »

Offline indeedproceed

  • In The Rafters
  • James Naismith
  • *********************************
  • Posts: 41431
  • Tommy Points: 2294
  • You ain't the boss of the freakin' bedclothes.
You want to give it at least a half an hour, no more than an hour and a half. If you could hit the golden time of an hour, that'd be great but kids and wives lack patience.

My suggestion: if you're coming home from the grocery store intending to make dinner right after, before you put stuff away, submerge the eggplant. By the time you're done putting stuff away and have preheated your grill and cooked your meat, they'll be ready Freddy.

"You've gotta respect a 15-percent 3-point shooter. A guy
like that is always lethal." - Evan 'The God' Turner