Sunday, August 5, 2012

New England Style Steak and Chicken: Grilling tips for the Summer

Well Hello!
Boy, It's been a while since I've posted, huh? I know, that may be a good thing. It means we've been overwhelmed with work but you know how much I love you all so I'm here to discuss a VERY serious matter. Something that seems to have been overlooked by almost every other remodeling blog this season so far... BARBECUE TIPS!

Oh, you think I'm kidding?... If you had any idea of how many people are brutalizing perfectly good cuts of chicken and steak as we speak, your laughter would turn to tears.

Thankfully, I've been taking notes and I've had a particularly good grilling season so far.
So, I'm going to go right ahead and share some of my grilling insight with you so that your summer will end with all of your friends asking, "Can I PLEASE get YOUR Barbecue Recipes??"

Here we go... nice and easy....

Get yourself some decent, boneless cuts of either Chicken  (boneless breast) or steak (Sirloin strip). I'm showing Steak tips because we all know what a boneless chicken breast looks like.

Other things you need!

**Study this picture**... Nah, don't. I'm going to list most of the ingredients in the next few paragraphs. I just thought I'd make you pay extra attention. Then again, there are only six things in this picture. Isn't it worth looking?

Is that it? YUP! Those six ingredients (Salt excluded, I'll cover that in a minute) are the backbone to every GREAT marinade. Don't argue, just hear me out and do this in order.

You need to take the portions of meat you've purchased, remove the EXCESS FAT you see and cut them into somewhat equal pieces. Don't shoot for perfect sizes especially with steak, Just try to cut them into somewhat even chunks that you can work with. Bigger pieces will come out more  Medium/Rare when cooked on the grill.... smaller pieces will cook more Medium/Well Done.

Chicken, you can go for a more even size cut of meat (because there is no "medium rare" with chicken. You want your guests to enjoy your barbecue, not be calling you from the hospital letting you know that they survived)

And here comes the marinade recipe: 

  • 1/2 cup Canola oil 
  • 1/4 cup Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1/4 cup water (I love Poland Springs, Use something good)
  • 1/4Teaspoon of Pepper
  • 1/2  Teaspoons of Salt (this is actually a HUGE ingredient but everyone is so scared of salt? I'll leave it up to you to decide how much to use. I've given my input now run with it. You know what you like, let your taste-buds be the judge of how much you need)

You're done.

Wait... what? What do you mean "I'm done?? You have pictures of Oregano and Rosemary! How much of those do I need??"
Those are all just complimentary. Feel free to toss a shake of whatever you like into your particular marinade. I only ask that you taste it before you use it. Yes, I said taste it. It should taste much like a good salad dressing. I often like to add either Honey or Sugar (sweetness does wonders for a marinade!) to give it a little extra love before I saturate a good cut of meat. Meat is your friend, don't subject it to anything you wouldn't be willing to taste.

Like I said, you're done.
That's the basis of your marinade. Wasn't that easy?
Short sidenote: You should be very picky with your meat trimmings. Remove any excess fat your grocer missed when cutting your tips into perfect marinade-ready cubes.

Here's my biggest tip: Go get yourself some Zip-lock freezer bags. Take the meat you've bought and cut it as previously described.

Combine meat and marinade into neat "pillow" grilling bags AND.... You're Done! (Boy, I keep saying 'You're done' and continue to talk... I promise we're close to the end)

Here's what Steak should look like:

And here's Chicken:

Toss those Buggers into your fridge for a good 24 hours before grilling. Allow the meat time to marinate and when you think they are ready,  cook on a hot grill at medium/low temp and flip often until cooked to perfection. Cooking is the second hardest part and I will cover an entirely different post (ain't I a stinker?)
My point here is: DON'T PAY FOR PRE-MARINATED MEATS!  You can and SHOULD do this yourself!

TIP OF THE DAY:  Make sure you "play with your meat" *Giggle*
As the meat pouches sit in your fridge soaking up the goodness, make sure to fondle them often and allow all of the marinade to work it's way through the meat pillows. You know you like it, let your fingers do the walking. Reach in often and fondle them to work the marinade through the meat.

Happy Grilling!


  1. Thanks for sharing these tips. Summer really means firing up the grill, sticking meat on it, and walking away. :)

  2. Good point. Similar to yours, I like doing marinating myself, and letting the meat soaked in the sauce overnight to let the liquid seep deep inside the meat. Looking forward for your next blog.


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