BBQ with charcoal for dummies

roche

i am lame
Wackbag Staff
May 28, 2004
11,403
14
523
Dallas, TX
#1
When I was a kid growing up, all I had was a gas grill. That thing died ages ago. This past 4th I decided to get a mini Webber charcoal grill because I was tired of the Foreman grill I have destroying the quality of my steaks.

I am a total dummy when it come to this as I have no experience with a Charcoal grill. The first steak I cooked tasted like gas or something. I assume this is because I didn't let the charcoal get hot enough and burn off the lighter fluid.

Can anyone give me cooking tips that you would give a 10 year old? I know I stink, but I have always just used propane were this stuff wasn't an issue. I am planning on cooking another steak tonight and I don't wanna fuck it up.
 

Sinn Fein

Infidel and White Interloper
Wackbag Staff
Aug 29, 2002
31,394
2,126
818
Florida's Nature Coast
#2
Real men don't need lighter fluid. Seriously, buy the stuff that comes in the small bags where you just light the bag.
 

Tax Kuntz

just being an ass
Jul 6, 2003
8,976
6
536
Parsippany, NJ
#3
Wait until the coals change color (white/ash-like) before cooking anything.
 

NotSoFast

Registered User
Apr 23, 2006
5,069
2,699
498
Thibodaux, LA USA
#4
Someone in Texas can't use a grill? :icon_redf

Buy the coals that say they can be lit without lighter fluid. Follow instructions on bag for proper lighting. Wait till the coals are completely white before cooking.

And for proper steaks, the pit must have a thick metal grill to hold the heat and sear the juices in the meat. The thin "wire" type doesn't cut it.

Remove meat BEFORE it gets to the desired state of done-ness. It will continue cooking for about 5 minutes after it is removed from the heat. If you want medium-rare, remove it while it still looks rare, etc.
 
Aug 5, 2004
4,494
1,192
658
#5
Go get yourself a couple of things
- Charcoal Chimney
- Natural Lump Charcoal (none of that briquette shit)
- a bag of mesquite chips
- a bag of hickory chips

To start your fire:
get some newspaper and pour a little vegtable oil on it, crush it up and put the paper in the bottom of the chimney

place a bunch of charcoal inside the chimney and light the fire underneath

(place the chimney in your grill while it is heating up)

let the chimney burn for about 20min or so.. until the coals get going

once ready dump out into your grill and add wood chips (soak them for more smoke).

place your grill over coals, shut the lid and let the grill heat up for a while.

place your steaks off to the side of the fire at first.. to let the inside heat up and cook a little before charring the outside..

when the inside has been heated up then place directly over the fire to get a nice char

Eat!
 

roche

i am lame
Wackbag Staff
May 28, 2004
11,403
14
523
Dallas, TX
#6
How many pieces of charcoal should I use for just one steak? Do I let the charcoal burn with the lid off or on?
 
Aug 5, 2004
4,494
1,192
658
#7
How many pieces of charcoal should I use for just one steak? Do I let the charcoal burn with the lid off or on?

How big is your grill?

lid on
 

weeniewawa

it's a man, baby!!!
May 21, 2005
12,076
1,267
593
Hell,California
#8
Go get yourself a couple of things
- Charcoal Chimney
- Natural Lump Charcoal (none of that briquette shit)
- a bag of mesquite chips
- a bag of hickory chips

To start your fire:
get some newspaper and pour a little vegtable oil on it, crush it up and put the paper in the bottom of the chimney

place a bunch of charcoal inside the chimney and light the fire underneath

(place the chimney in your grill while it is heating up)

let the chimney burn for about 20min or so.. until the coals get going

once ready dump out into your grill and add wood chips (soak them for more smoke).

place your grill over coals, shut the lid and let the grill heat up for a while.

place your steaks off to the side of the fire at first.. to let the inside heat up and cook a little before charring the outside..

when the inside has been heated up then place directly over the fire to get a nice char

Eat!
X2

now I'm hungry:clap:
 
Aug 5, 2004
4,494
1,192
658
#10
If you fill up the chimney to the top that should be enough coal for a couple of nice steaks and veggies

oh, and make sure you brush the grill with some olive oiil.. and brush those veggies with a nice olive oil, salt, pepper, and garlic powder.... damn, I'm hungry
 

Glenn Dandy

THE ONLY WHITE PRESIDENT LEFT.
Mar 21, 2005
19,758
35
298
Wackbag Whitehouse.
#11
Charcoal is for cavemen... Marinate.


I got stuck with charcoal few weeks ago... broke out the acetaline..torch...... 10 minutes cookin those fuckers my grill was at 110? fuck that unless you are cookin lots of shit..


MARINATE.
 

roche

i am lame
Wackbag Staff
May 28, 2004
11,403
14
523
Dallas, TX
#16
I got stuck with charcoal few weeks ago... broke out the acetaline
it had a gas leak...an oxy-acetaline gas leak
I'm guessing that's what they used to have it blow up reaal good

 

BCH

Doesn't need your acknowledgement on Twitter
Wackbag Staff
Jun 9, 2005
9,519
235
513
New York
#17
Really small. I bought a piece of shit 30 dollar Webber grill.

There's the problem, there's no meat on that thing.

That's the strange thing about charcoal, the cooking power seems to develop once the coals appear to be no good for anything anymore. You have to let any flame completely die out and then wait a little while longer. My house had one of those field stone & cement grills in the back yard when I bought it and I used it early on. Then I knocked it down and got a gas grill.
 

roche

i am lame
Wackbag Staff
May 28, 2004
11,403
14
523
Dallas, TX
#18
That picture was just used for reference. It is the grill I purchased, yes, but that is not what I was cooking. I have only cooked steaks on it so far.
 

Frankie_Ballz

wear no bag, spread the hiv
Jul 24, 2005
576
0
0
#19
Fill the chimney about 3/4 of the way full, let that burn till almost all of the charcoal is ashy white, dump it. Now this is where it depends on what you are cooking, if it is only a steak of two you can just leave it kind of piled up in the middle. Leave the lid OFF. Leaving the lid on just decreases the temp of the grill. I am a line cook and am on a 3'x6' grill 4 or so days a week, and I have never made a fire that gets to the temp of that thing. Let that fucker go till the you can only hold your hand above the grate for <2 seconds. Throw the steaks on once your grill has gotten to this temp. Wait around 2 min or a little less(this part will come w/ time, it really isn't a time thing just a doneness thing) and turn the steak 45 deg counter-clockwise. Wait another 2 min or less and then flip. Repeat the same procedure that you did for the first side, and you should be around a med for a 1.5" steak. The whole marking and cooking to doneness thing takes some practice but you will get it. And don't forget to rest your meat when done. If you are cooking a ton of food or filling the grill make sure that the charcoal actually gets spread out.

If you are going for BBQ then make a pile about 2/3 the size of the steak amount and place a a pan of water right next to it. I just use the disposable ones in the store. Get an oven thermometer and put that in w/ the lid on. Try to keep the temp at around 225-250, you can add wood chunks to (I like hickory or apple) just make sure you don't over do it or it will be really smokey, and make sure to soak the wood first. Keep it at around that temp for 4-6hrs for ribs and 8-12hrs for brisket and pork butt or shoulder. At the end you can remove the water pan move the heat to the center and nicely carmelize the sauce.
 

kid afrika

Registered User
Apr 7, 2001
1,661
0
0
Old Bridge, NJ
#20
I had that same grill a few years ago and I cooked up some really good steaks and chicken on it.

The key is the charcoal chimney. Easy to light and gets the coals ready quickly.

A lot of people love to marinate their meat. I prefer a dry rub and proper cooking. Marinating breaks down the meat and makes it tender. Not good for some cuts of meat.

For chicken breasts, I use a lemon pepper rub with some kosher salt.

For steaks (strip, t-bone or porterhouse), I use fresh ground pepper and kosher salt.

Don't flip your meat to much. Try to cook on each side for about the same amount of time until done.

Kosher salt doesn't clump. I gives a nice crispy coating which seals in the flavor and accents the flavor of the meat.

Biggest tip, remove your meat from the grill and then wait 5 - 8 minutes before plating. Oh yeah, take the meat off the grill about 15 - 25 degrees before desired temperature. It will continue to cook just from its own heat.
 

THE FEZ MAN

as a matter of fact i dont have 5$
Aug 23, 2002
41,299
8,971
768
#21
i have the same grill.

i use news paper with some olive oil on in and a couple of pieces of match lite charcoal to light my cowboy charcoal. takes about 15mins to get it rocket hot, then i cook my steaks right on the coals, fuck marinade on beef, buy better meat
 
Jul 13, 2006
12,836
1
0
Arkansas
#22
i cook my steaks right on the coals, fuck marinade on beef, buy better meat
Exactly. I use garlic, onion, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper for my steak. The thing doesn't need marinades.

It doesn't even need the crap that I put on there aside from salt and pepper. Those few spices are just personal taste.

And for those people who buy the marinade things in bottles just need to go to a restaurant for dinner. About the most you need if you're cooking indoors on a stove is some wine to add moisture and a tad of taste. There is no need to put your shit in a bag and fill it up with sauce to sit for a day.


This is what you should be using for your fire. http://www.flickr.com/photos/deepfriedkudzu/118145449/
 

BCH

Doesn't need your acknowledgement on Twitter
Wackbag Staff
Jun 9, 2005
9,519
235
513
New York
#23
i have the same grill. i cook my steaks right on the coals
Barbarian.

Everyone should go out to a real butcher shop just once and buy prime aged anything. Once you do, you'll eat much less red meat because you won't want to slum with that USDA choice stuff.

Marinades can do wonders for lamb, pork, or chicken. Beef, not so much.
 

abudabit

New Wackbag
Oct 10, 2004
14,802
0
0
#25
Agree with everyone, marinading sucks on beef. Although marinaded chicken is perhaps the tastiest meat you can ever have.

Charcoal is great and easy once you get the hang of it, the part where new people mess up is they put the meat on while the coals are still flaming. I do the chimney, then once they get white I distribute them across the grill. I don't put the grate on until I'm ready to add the food.

My favourite beef spice mix was this stuff called Pappi's. Don't know if it was local or not, I only saw it in California.