Like most methods of cooking, barbecuing is an art, not a science. Sure, there is some science involved in concocting sauces, and a lot of mathematics involved in calculating temperatures, but for the most part, there is no one right way of grilling – the finished product is a result of the character of the griller. But there are a few essentials tools for every grilling experience – for example, a grill.
However, the nature of the grill itself, and specifics of the other pieces of BBQ equipment, is left up to the griller. A dedicated griller will probably have a complete arsenal of tools and tricks, while the typical backyard griller will have a smaller, more self-contained grilling unit. But in the end, it is the destination, not the journey, that matters, and if the end result is good-tasting food, then all BBQ equipment is useful.
The most essential piece of BBQ equipment is the grill itself. Grills can come in any number of sizes, from small one-layered porch grills to huge, multi-tiered grills with warming trays and specific areas for smoking and marinating. The size of the grill depends on the needs of the griller-a griller who is hoping simply to grill up hamburgers and hot dogs probably does not need to spend the thousands of dollars required for some of the more complicated grills.
But if grilling is a man or woman’s life, then the investment in high-end BBQ equipment may be worthwhile to further a hobby and a dream. Grills also differ by the fuel used. Some burn wood or charcoal, while others are connected to natural gas or propane tanks. While some grills allow the griller to switch between fuels, some do not offer this option. The ability to grill over wood is essential for achieving certain flavors or scents, such as hickory, mesquite or cherry, or over charcoal for that famous smoky taste.
There are numerous other pieces of BBQ equipment that allow the griller to try other grilling techniques, or make the job easier. Chimney starters help to create a good charcoal fire cheaply and efficiently, and without the use of starter chemicals. Smokers can be used with grills to obtain a true smoked flavor. The meat is cooked in a box of wood chips that sits over the grill fire, cooking the meat slowly and infusing it with flavors from all sides. Other popular BBQ equipment includes forks, knives, tongs, brushes and other utensils used to protect the griller from the flames while he or she manipulates the meat.
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