7 Grilling Secrets for Barbeque Success

Want to partake in the summertime ritual of outdoor grilling, but afraid of a charbroiled disaster? Here are seven tips to mastering the art of barbequing:

Trim the Fat
Drastically reduce your chances of charring meat by cutting off any excess fat from the outside edges down to one quarter inch. The goal, after all, is a juicy steak-not a crispy one. Besides, trimming the fat cuts the amount of grease drippings and subsequently controls flame-ups. Check out handy grilling tools.

Marinate More
Want flavor to the very last bite? Soak your meat in marinade for 12 to 24 hours in the refrigerator to ensure optimal absorption and maximum tenderization. For good measure, use one to two cups of sauce for every one-and-a-half to two pounds of meat.

Lube the Grate

No one wants to spend hours scrubbing the grate post-cookout. Avoid a lengthy and laborious clean-up by oiling the grill before using. Simply take a long-handled brush to spread olive oil evenly over the surface to keep meat from sticking and caking. See the season's most stylish picnicware.

Light Up Your Fire with Salad Dressing (Yes, Dressing)

Don't have lighter fluid? Don't despair! Grab the salad dressing from the fridge and douse it over charcoals. The oil in the dressing acts as a great accelerant.

Turn Up the Heat

When you are ready to cook, set the grill on high heat before placing meat on the grate. This will seal the outer layer of your filet, steak, or flank and instantly trap precious juices inside.Browse divine outdoor lighting.

Bring on the Humidity
Seasoned grillers employ a nifty trick to keep meat moist during roasting-they place a pan of water or an open can of beer close to the fire (but far from the meat) to increase the humidity in their grilling spaces! Genius! Discover chic backyard barware.

Don't Mess with Your Meat
Over-handling meat-in the form of flipping, pressing down on it with a spatula, or testing doneness with a fork-does more harm than good. People tend to flip meat frequently for fear of overcooking, but actually dries meat out. Meanwhile, pressing down on burgers and steaks forces delicious juices out of the meat, also leading to dryness. Ditto piercing meat with a fork to test how cooked it is or flip it. If you are truly concerned about undercooked meat, invest in a durable grilling thermometer. And turn meat with tongs or a spatula.

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Reprinted with permission of Hearst Communications, Inc.

photo credit: istockphoto.com