Lu Dos Santos, owner of Alltown Gas Grills & Propane in Weymouth, Mass., says gas and charcoal are the most common grills and understanding the differences is important before you buy. “It’s two different worlds.”
With summer fast approaching, it’s as good a time as any to make sure you have the best grill to meet your needs. The most common types of grill fuels are gas and charcoal. It is important to know the differences between the types of grills before you buy.
“It’s two different worlds,” said Lu Dos Santos, owner of Alltown Gas Grills & Propane in Weymouth. “A gas grill is much easier to use, you just start the grill and go about your business.”
Charcoal grills, however, give more flavor to the meat and are usually less expensive than gas-fired grills.
“Some people think food tastes better on a charcoal grill,” said Bruce Keltie, owner of Commonwealth Fireplace and Grill Shop in Norwood. “Charcoal is an intense heat source. It lets you sear the meat and keep the juices in.”
Shop owners encourage consumers not to get too cheap of a grill, the kind that might not last the summer.
“Spending a little money up-front will allow you not to spend money two years down the road to replace parts,” Dos Santos said.
Grills can cost from $225 to $12,000. A popular model is the Weber Genesis, a gas-powered grill that can cost as much as $800.
“It’s nice to just be outside, get out of the house, get some fresh air,” Keltie said. “I think it taps into our basic instincts that cooking outdoors is great.”
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There are more foods to grill than burgers and steaks. Here are some ideas for the adventurous:
Clam bake: Placing clams or mussels with sausage, potatoes and corn on the cob in a tin-foil pouch and setting on the grill can create a quick and easy clam bake.
Grilled Caesar salad: Grilling the bread and lettuce before cutting up and placing in a Caesar salad gives an unexpected twist to a classic recipe.
Pizza: Using your grill to make pizza gives it the same crunchy crust as brick-oven pizza. Place the dough on the grill, allow to cook for a few minutes, then flip and add the toppings to avoid burning.
Dessert: Use your grill to make desserts by placing fruit directly on the grill. The heat will caramelize natural sugars in the fruit and give a warm, soft texture. The best fruits to try are pineapple, peaches or other stone fruits.
Sources: foodnetwork.com, associatedcontent.com