Grilling: a Fun, Experimental and Creative Adventure

According to Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary,

mixed grill

is defined as

meats and vegetables broiled together and served on one

According to Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary, “mixed grill” is defined as “meats and vegetables broiled together and served on one plate.” After being selected to write this weekly column on behalf of the Gilroy Dispatch, Hollister Free Lance and Morgan Hill Times, I decided that the best way to present each installment is with a mix of subjects that will be educational, interesting and new.

As you continue to read this column, it is my sincere hope that you will come away with techniques and tips that will elevate your grilling experience to new levels. That said, I must also mention that I am completely self-taught and have not received “formal education” in the subject of food or grilling.

I have always been interested in food and have an absolute love for it! I started at a very young age, and I’ve been learning ever since. As I write these columns, I will be learning some new things that I will share with you. I hope that my experiences, trials and experiments of more than 20 years will be of assistance to beginner and intermediate grillers.

There are a variety of interesting recipes I will be sharing with you, too. Of course, the Internet is one of the greatest resources we have available, and I’ll search for some unique or different recipes as we progress through our journey. I also have a variety of family recipes as well as recipes I have developed on my own. Finally, I encourage you to contact me with some of the favorites that you enjoy and would not mind sharing.

New ideas are exciting. They are fresh and can surprise us with some unexpected flavors. I am fascinated by the idea of fusion cooking: taking two completely different recipes and/or techniques and making something new by intertwining them. It’s very easy to lend fusion to grilling, and fusion can produce some fantastic new recipes to add to your personal grilling catalog.

I decided on the name Mixed Grill for my column – as well as its theme – because I intend to focus on a broad view of what grilling means. I will explore the methods of wood-fired ovens, wood-plank grilling and rotisserie, to name a few.

There are also some fantastic grilling and barbecue restaurants in the area that I plan on visiting, and I’ll share the unique approach each takes to preparing food. Tools are very important when it comes to grilling, and it’s important to have the right tool for the right job. I will explore the difference between gas and charcoal grills, as well as other tools that are necessary to help make your grilling experience enjoyable.

Meat is not the only type of food that can be grilled. If you have friends or family members who do not eat meat, I will have some answers to accommodate their choices as well.

As my last thought for this week, I want you to have fun. Grilling might make some people nervous because it requires fire to cook, but if you observe safety, everything will be OK! Become creative. I don’t believe any recipe is set in stone. It can be adapted to your own tastes.

If you take away one thing from my column, I hope you’ll learn to make something your own and have the confidence to explore. If a mistake is made by cooking too long or selecting the wrong cut of meat, the worst that happens is that you try again.

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