Types of Grills
Braziers are designed for direct grilling with a firebox and rack. There are also more elaborate models with hoods, rotisseries, and air vents.
Starting the Fire
For gas grills, follow the manufacturer's instructions. Always be sure to have the grill lid open when lighting. Some grills have spark igniters that will start when the igniter is turned on. Others require a lighted match to be inserted into the lighting hole located at front or side of grill box. The first use of a grill will require longer preheating to temper the coals. Subsequent use normally requires about 5 minutes preheat time to heat the coals.
To light charcoal, push charcoal into a mound in the center of the grill. For regular briquettes, you can use an electric starter or one of the liquid or solid types of starter. Always follow manufacturer's instructions carefully. Starters work best if you wait about a minute after adding so there is time for it to penetrate the briquettes. Never add more starter after fire is started! And, only use starter designed for barbecuing. Never use gasoline or kerosene! Self-lighting briquettes don't require starter-just light them with a match.
When ready to use, coals will appear ash gray in daylight or glowing red at night.
Direct or Indirect Grilling
Indirect cooking is where the coals are arranged away from the food so the juices do not drip directly on the coals and cause flare-ups. Arrange the hot coals around the perimeter of the area where cooking will take place. Place a disposable foil drip pan directly under the food. A cover is necessary with this type cooking to hold in the heat and allow the heat to radiate back to the food indirectly.
Recipes indicate the timing for each method. Some smaller, quick-cooking foods only have directions for direct cooking while some larger items only include indirect cooking directions. Many items include both directions and you can select the method you prefer.
How Hot Is Hot
Hot: 2 secondsmedium-hot: 3 secondsmedium: 4 secondsmedium-low: 5 secondslow: 6 seconds
Never allow excessive flare-ups to burn your food. Flare-ups are caused by excessive fat and/or too much heat.
Care and Cleaning
Clean your grill shortly after cooking. Soak the grill rack and utensils in sudsy water while you enjoy your barbecued foods. If the rack is too large for your sink, wrap it in wet newspapers or cover with wet paper towels. After standing, the rack and utensils should wipe clean. For cooked-on foods, use a stiff brush or a special grill-cleaning brush.
Before grilling, remove excess ash to allow for good air circulation around food. Always be sure air-vent holes are not covered with ash. Be sure ash is completely cold before discarding and always place recently used ash in a fire-proof container.