Five cool new bbq accessories

I ventured into my garden for the first time the other day and stared longingly at my kettle grill. I even sniffed the air, breathing in the imaginary aromas of slightly sweet, hickory-smoked ribs. It's that time of year again, and I am psyched.

Below are some new products that might get the steaks, I mean creative juices, flowing this season. (And if you need a new grill for your balcony or backyard, check out my previous post.)

Barbecue Utensil Set

This stainless steel set brings to mind the phrase "form follows function." Each piece is beautifully designed with a sleek aesthetic, and without compromising the intended function of the tool. They actually work and work well. Included in the set are gripper tongs, a turner, spearing tongs and small flipping tongs. It's a set that is perfect for the backyard aficionado with the double-wide Viking grill and outdoor kitchen ensemble. At $378 it's not a steal, but it'll sure have the neighbors envious.

Extremis Utensile1 Barbeque Set, $378 for a 4-piece set; through

Smoker Set

To use many smoker boxes, you place them near the side of the grill. What I like about this one is that the wood chips or pellets are set into the smoker frame directly under the food tray so you don't lose any of the flavor. One tip: The smoker frame food tray is elevated even further over the heat source of your grill, because when you smoke, you usually use do so at a lower temperature for a longer amount of time. So, if you still want to sear the food you are smoking, get the food tray good and hot before laying out your meat, fish, veggies or poultry. Then place the smoking trays in place under the food tray at the bottom of the smoker frame. The set works on both gas and charcoal grills. I can smell the applewood-smoked pork chops already.

Charcoal Companion Platinum Grid with Smoker Tray Set, $50;

Cutting Board

I think this little contraption falls under the category, "Why didn't anyone think of this before?" A white teak cutting board with handles fits most grill side tables, so that you can check and carve your meat before bringing it to the table. There are two trays for catching all the delicious juicy bits, or for your sauces and seasonings, plus a removable hook-on storage pocket and three stainless steel tools.

Picnic Time Carver, $60;

Steel Food Loops

When I first saw these, I thought they were ridiculous. But then I recalled veggies falling through the grate onto the hot coals below and the horrible smell that resulted and began to rethink my position. The stainless steel loop is adjustable to 6.5" in diameter, which can lasso a small bird, corral thin asparagus stalks, and keep the stuffing inside a roast. I'm thinking up more uses as a write. Plus, it can withstand heat to 2012 degrees Fahrenheit, which means you can use it in the turkey fryer too.

Foodloop Flame, $16 for a set of 4;

Veggie Grill

The hardest part of grilling is timing. There's nothing worse than sitting down to your perfectly marinated, hot-off-the-grill swordfish steak, only to find your baked potato side dish is as hard as a rock. The folks at Wilton Armetale came up with this cooker that uses the conductivity of metal to cook your potatoes or other tubers from the inside out. With additional tray space, smaller veggies can be heated at the same time. It takes up some grill space, but it's worth every inch when you can bring the attractive tray to the table with evenly cooked vegetables at the same time as your main.

Foodloop Flame, $16 for a set of 4;

Gina Provenzano has worn many hats, including that of a stylist, producer, writer, and editor. With experience both on staff at national consumer magazines such as Bon Appétit and Family Circle and as a freelance contributor for independent companies, Gina is recognized as an industry expert in entertaining, kitchens, tabletop design, and home decorating.


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