Dizzy Tips: High Heat Summer Grilling

Dizzy Tips - high-heat summer grillingQuick seared meats can be just as tasty and have just as much depth of flavor as low-n-slow smoker classics.

Whether you own a charcoal or propane grill, a busy summer is definitely the time to crank up the heat and do some high heat grilling for quick and easy family meals.

Take your high heat grilling up a notch, or two, with a few simple steps and techniques.

Selecting the Right Meat

The first step is selecting the right meat for the meal. You can’t go wrong with good old hamburgers and hot dogs, or a classic rib steak. These meats have enough fat content to keep themselves moist throughout the cook. Just add some Dizzy Pig Cowlick or Raising the Steaks seasoning on that burger or steak and you are good to go!

With hamburgers:

  • Remember that fat is flavor. So avoid the really lean ground beef and opt for a medium grind
  • Resist the urge to ‘press’ the burgers down on the grill with your spatula . That hot ‘hissss’ may sound cool, but that’s also the sound of the fat/flavor leaving your burger!

Number 2Lean options

For leaner options try ground turkey, ground chicken or grind salmon in a food processor with some scallions and Raging River rub for an awesome, wholesome salmon burger!

Other lean cuts to consider are the ubiquitous boneless, skinless chicken breast or pork center loin chops.

Because of their lack of internal fat, we strongly recommend that you brine these cuts of meat before grilling. We at Dizzy Pig are huge fans of the technique of brining lean foods before cooking. If you are unfamiliar with this technique, there are many online resources to give you insight into the reasons, methods and recipe options for brining.

We believe if you brine once, you’ll become as enthusiastic about it as we are!

Number 3Carryover Heat

Another thing to remember when grilling direct over high heat this summer is carryover cooking.

Meat will retain heat and continue to cook even after it has been removed from the grill.

Carryover heat from high heat will be much greater than with other lower temperature recipes. With some thinner cuts, internal finishing temps can rise by as much 15-20°F. Keep this in mind when monitoring your ‘finished’ temperature.

Case in point: Boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Because of their ability to adapt to many different flavor profiles, Chris has been direct grilling a lot of boneless, skinless chicken breasts on his Big Green Egg in the development of the new line-up of rubs.

Chris’s comments and findings on grilling chicken breasts direct include:
  • I use a medium-high heat over a direct lump charcoal fire to grill these.
    The thinner they are, the hotter I actually cook them.
    The reason is that my goal is to get good browning on each side right about the time that the middle is done.
  • The tricky part is knowing when the middle is done.
    It’s said that you should take the meat off when it hits 160°F in the coolest spot.
    The trouble is, when you’re cooking over a hot fire, the outer layers of meat are way over 160°F by the time the coldest spot registers that same temp!”
Chris’s solution?
  • I usually pull it off when the internal is 150°F or less when I am cooking hot and fast, then rest for 10-15 minutes loosely tented in foil. The carryover heat finishes the chicken breast off perfectly to an internal of 160°F or so, and the chicken is not overcooked.”

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