Summer Grilling Tips

As summer approaches and the weather warms up, it is the perfect time to get the barbecue or grill going. We asked our resident grill master, Kinsan of Wasshoi and some of our butchers and poulterers for some summer grilling tips to ensure the holiday season tastes its best! 

1. Get the temperature right 

Like everything, practice makes perfect when it comes to grilling. Getting the right temperature is also key, according to Kinsan. 

“Use the heat to control the cooking speed and quality,” he says. “Don’t make the heat too high or you will burn the surface of the produce before it’s cooked through. But you also do not want the heat too low, or you will lose all the moisture from the food.” 

2. Select the right BBQ cuts 

Kinsan likes to use steak as it has the best flavour when grilled. “I personally like beef scotch fillet as it is a reasonable price and a great flavour. 

“Alternatively, I like a lamb rack grilled to medium rare with salt & pepper and served with whole grain mustard.”

Ash from Gary’s Meats also prefers steak. “I always look for a steak with more marbling as it will have more flavour. After grilling, rest the meat for at 5-10 minutes under some foil. The meat tenses up on the BBQ but after resting, it will relax and you get the tenderness back.”

3. BBQ preparation is key 

Before you pop the meat on the grill, Kinsan recommends the portions are at room temperature before cooking. Season the meat and then spray the portions with spray oil to prevent them from sticking. 

Ash agrees you want the steak to be room temperature before you grill. “Take the steak out of the fridge an hour before grilling. I advise salting the steak just before putting it on the grill. If you add the salt too early, it will draw moisture from the meat.”

Use skin-on chicken portions is the recommendation of Mark from Kevin’s Fresh Poultry. “If you are going to grill or barbecue a chicken breast or thigh, keep the skin on so the moisture is retained. It will shrivel up during the cooking process, so you can always remove it before eating if that is your preference.”

4. Get creative with marinades 

Kinsan likes to keep things simple and often just uses salt and pepper on his steaks, but it is all a matter of taste. 

“I think beef is best grilled simply. However, for chicken and pork, a honey based marinade made with ginger and garlic adds extra punch to the flavour. A Korean BBQ style marinade also works well. Remember, you can also use sauce for extra flavour after grilling.”

Mark agrees honey is a great marinade for chicken. “A honey and soy marinade suits the whole family and it is really popular. It can be a bit sticky and smoky on the grill, but everyone loves it. You want to let the chicken marinade for at least an hour prior to cooking.

“If you are looking for an instant hit of flavour, a lemon pepper dry spice rub is also perfect for BBQ chicken. Drizzle oil on the chicken and then add the rub for a delicious coating. You can do this just before grilling.” 

5. Don’t forget the vegetables 

Stay out of the kitchen entirely on those warm summer nights and use the grill for your vegetables too! While you can BBQ most vegetables, some work better than others. Kinsan recommends asparagus and capsicum as they are easy to prepare and quick to cook. They both become sweeter when grilled and the aroma from the BBQ adds extra flavour. 

“Think about what the grilled vegetables will be served with. Both grilled asparagus and capsicum go really well with most meats,” Kinsan says.

“Corn with butter is also nice when steamed in aluminium foil and you can choose whether or not to grill it after.” 

Don’t be scared to experiment this summer! The holidays are the perfect time to practice and try new things on the grill. 

If you are looking for some summer barbecue inspiration, check out our barbecue ideas and recipes below.

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