Hearty steaks, robust burgers, fire-licked veggies — these are no-brainer wintertime treats. Stay true to your inner griller by taking your cooking outside. Throw on that parka, and prepare to be a hero to your family and friends. Practice successful grilling all winter long with these tips from our own local maestro of meat, Blue Canyon Kitchen & Tavern chef/owner Brandt Evans. He's no stranger to the snow-covered grill. "Grilling in the winter can help, mentally, with the cabin fever we all get in Northeast Ohio," Evans says. Here are his tips for bringing the heat in the cold.
Keep your "tools" handy."Always have a shovel by the back door, ready to go," Evans says. "You don't want to be walking with items in your hand and slip — or drop your tongs and lose them in the snow."
Go with gas. "You don't have to worry about the blowing snow or wind and maintaining the grill to see if your charcoal stayed lit," Evans explains.
Low and slow is the way to go. "Turn your grill on low, and slowly increase the temp," Evans says. "It might be below zero outside, and things could crack or break from the major temp difference." Everything needs more time to warm up, so take your own time with this process. Don't rush any step.
Bundle up. "Put a jacket on and gloves and a hat," Evans says. "Don't think you're just running outside." And think about footwear. Evans recommends slip-on shoes. "You don't want your loved ones mad that you're getting the floor all wet, all over a piece of chicken for crying out loud."
Prepare for next time. You are going to do this again, right? "Invest in a cover," says Evans. "This will help protect your grill, and you won't have to brush off the snow — just take the cover off."