These grilling techniques make all the difference.
It’s time to kick off grilling season! We have two delicious recipes, and some top grilling tips for the best meat.
Chef Todd Leonard from the UVU Culinary School shares how to understand cooking with heat on the grill, the basics of marinating, and his finishing technique. He also shares his recipe for both homemade Chimichurri Sauce and Roasted Sweet Corn Salsa.
Grilling & Marinating Secrets
Grilling is a dry heat cooking method, the flavor of the grill we love so much comes from char or caramelizing of the product. Picking the meat to be grilled is very important. Choose meats that have good fat content to them. The fat will melt as the dry heat cooks the meat keeping it moist, good fatty meats such as a rib eye may not need more than a good seasoning to be a great grilled item. Other meats that may contain less fat and juice need assistance in cooking with “Moping and Basting.” Marinating and seasoning of meat should always be done with the purpose to enhance the natural flavor of the meat or vegetables not to mask or take away from the product itself. It is important to understand heat, bigger pieces of meat need lower heat and longer cooking time or the outside will char or caramelize to quickly leaving it over cooked and the middle still raw. TURN IT DOWN. Low and slow with moping and finishing techniques during the cooking process will make grilling become a love of your cuisine!
The 3 Basics of Marinating
1- Flavor – Rubs, herbs, garlic, salt, pepper and don’t forget the “Pit Seasoning”
2- Acidity – Citrus, vinegar, wine, Worcestershire, hot sauces
3- Fat – Oils, butter, larding, barding
*Using marinades to mop and baste with is appropriate as long as the liquid has a chance to cook thoroughly as the meat cooks.
Generally all meats need to be finished with a flavorful liquid at the end of cooking to help keep moisture and shine to the meats. Simple ideas are as follows.
1- Butter or flavored butters rubbed on meats or served with grilled meats
2- Fresh olive oil marinades not contaminated with raw meat.
3- One of chef Todd’s Favorites is a mixture of butter or olive oil, lime juice and Cholula hot sauce
4- Glaze = BBQ, Teriyaki, Sweet and Sour or savory meat
5- Fruit juices – especially good on fish, or white meats
- 1 bunch cilantro — washed
- 1 bunch Italian Parsley — washed and stemmed
- 2 Tablespoons oregano — washed and stemmed
- 8 sprigs chives – washed
- 2 Tablespoons garlic — peeled whole
- 1 red serrano chili pepper — deseeded
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- ¼ cup fresh lime juice
- ¼ cup olive oil
- ¼ cup water
- Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth.
- Baste and marinate meats for grilling.
Roasted Sweet Corn Salsa
- 8 ears white sweet corn on the cob, roasted and cut from the cob
- 12 roma tomatoes, cored halved, and pushed through dicer
- 1 red bell pepper, diced small
- 1 green bell pepper diced small
- 2 pablano peppers, diced small
- 3 jalapenos, seeded and minced
- 2 bunches of cilantros, cleaned and chopped
- 1 red onion, diced small
- 1 Tablespoon garlic, mined
- 16 ounces tomato juice
- 4 limes, juiced
- 2 Tablespoons Cholula hot sauce
- 1 Tablespoon kosher salt
- ½ Tablespoon black pepper
- Prepare all ingredients and mix in a bowl.
- Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
- Store in covered container.
- Keeps up to 5 days.