For those living in apartments or condos, grilling season can be torturous. Hearing stories from your coworker about how they had a barbecue-centric party over the weekend doesn’t really sit well, and jealous feelings can creep in.
However, thanks to modern invention and technology, forget about needing any outdoor space – you can now grill indoors! However, there is one big question that needs answering: Is it possible to match the cooking quality of an outdoor barbecue? Thankfully, the answer is ‘Yes’! However, you need to know what you’re doing.
Lucky for you, we are here to help you out with that by providing 8 great indoor grilling tips. These tips will help you to have the same experience and BBQ taste. Just call over your friends and family, and prepare to wow them!
1. Choose Grill Pans, Always
Whenever you’re grilling indoors, always go for a grill pan. Whenever you’re grilling indoors, always go for a grill pan. According to Faveable, any other style of grills, like a Panini press-style for example, won’t heat your food properly or give them those classic grill marks like a cast-iron grill pan.
A grill pan will help keep food heat even when you’re grilling. The ridged-style grill pan will give your food authentic grill marks. Not to mention, it also comes close to providing an outdoor grilling vibe at the same time.
2. Splash Out On the Essentials
First off, you’ll need some tongs and heavy-duty spatulas. They’ll help you to flip over any sort of food like vegetables, burgers, fish fillets, and chicken with great ease.
Next, invest in some pastry brushes and heavy-duty grill brushes. The former will help you brush barbecue sauces on your meat, glaze them, and smear oil when needed. The latter will help you to keep your grill clean.
The final thing that you need to buy is oil. Now, you can choose canola or vegetable oil, as they are both considered the best for grilling. They don’t add any extra flavours to your food and they also have a high smoking point.
These few, but crucial, essentials will help towards a much better grilling experience.
3. Preparation Is Key
Before starting your indoor grilling, you must make sure your food is prepared properly. The most important part about grilling indoors is pre-seasoning your grill pan.
Start by preheating your oven to around 375 degrees. On the grill pan, rub some vegetable oil or canola oil generously by using paper towels or a clean cloth. Place the grill pan in the oven for roughly 30 minutes.
After 30 minutes, turn the oven off and take the grill pan out. Let it rest until it’s completely cool.
Another thing to remember when you’re grilling is you only need to oil your food after you’ve seasoned the pan. Don’t pour extra oil onto the grill pan.
Brush only the food with oil, seasonings and sauces, and you’re good to go!
4. Professional Level Grill Marks
If you want to get professional level grill marks on your food, look no further because it’s possible to achieve with some simple tricks.
All you have to do is place your grilled meat or vegetables on the pan at a 45-degree angle to the ridges. Grill at this angle for 2-3 minutes, then rotate the food to a 90-degree angle in the opposite direction on the same side. This will create professional crosshatch marks on your food.
Grill for another 2-3 minutes and you’re done! There’s no need to do both sides as one side will be placed facing the plate anyway.
5. Patience and Control
The key to controlling smoke and keeping it on a low level is to ensure you’re not pressing down on the food. When you press down on your food, it’s actually forcing the juices to escape. It also causes your food to burn and dry out fast. This causes the grill pan to increase smoke levels.
You can also keep smoke level low by not overusing oil or sauce on your food. Marinated food already have acidic ingredients in them, like vinegar, citrus juices or wine. They help to break the food down, making them tougher.
Also refrain from flipping or turning the food before it’s ready. It can fall apart or worse, cook unevenly. Grilling is all about patience, and if you have that, you’re halfway there to becoming an expert indoor griller.
6. Your Own Smoky BBQ Flavored Sauce
Grilling indoors means you won’t get that outdoor smoky flavor you usually get from using hardwood charcoals. This is an issue since you can’t use hardwood charcoal inside your apartment or condo.
Thankfully, you can buy your own smoky-flavored BBQ sauces. Better yet, you can make them yourself at home. Add in some extra spices, glazes, and you practically invent your own sauce recipe. Thanks to the digital age, you can look up recipes online and start making your sauce right away.
7. Picking the Right Food for Grilling
Picking the right food for grilling indoors is pretty easy. For example, burgers, fish fillets, steaks, boneless chicken breasts, and hot dogs are just some of the foods you can easily grill.
What you need to avoid are meats that are larger in the cut. Think about the likes of prime ribs, whole turkeys or chicken. The reason for this is they need to be covered when they are being grilled. Sadly, you can’t really do that on an indoor grilling pan.
Also, avoid fatty meats such as duck breast. These can cause extra smoke, which isn’t what you want indoors.
By the way, if you’re worried about not knowing when the food is done, worry no more. You can use an instant-read thermometer to check the temperature of the food.
8. Once Again, Patience!
The final tip requires your patience once again. Once you’re done grilling your food, only remove it when it’s below 5 degrees the internal temperature. You can cover it up loosely with some foil and leave it to rest for another 5 or 15 minutes.
Letting it rest increases the temperature. This allows the juices to spread around, make the food tastier, and, of course, super juicy. Who doesn’t like a juicy steak?
The key to indoor grilling is being patient, and we cannot stress this point enough. There are also some other important tips like having the correct essentials for a successful indoor grilling session.