Grilling in Winter

When we moved to Hastings from our apartment in the city last year I knew that I wanted a grill. My heart rate would quicken every time I stumbled upon a July issue of a cooking magazine outlining all the fun other people were having with their grills. They were making sublime vegetables with beautiful lines across them. They were flipping steaks and chicken parts to their heart’s content. Back in the apartment, I had thought about using one of those stove-top grill pans on our little gas range, but without a range hood I knew that I was only asking for trouble. So the first warm day in May last year, The Husband, The Girl and I trekked over the hill to Home Depot and got ourselves a grill.

When I lived in California I had a Weber kettle charcoal grill, which I used mostly for marinated chicken pieces. I was ready to put a grill to a lot more use now. I didn’t want to be limited to only cooking in warm weather and I didn’t want to come home from work and wait 45 minutes for the coals to get just right. That’s why I got a gas grill. And even though I miss that wonderful carcinogenic flavor from the coals, I use the grill rain or shine (well, to be honest—sprinkling or shine, and snow has been a deterrent too). There are two problems with grilling when it’s cold 1) it takes a lot more gas to keep the grill hot, and 2) the cold air drifts into the house every time you go in and out. Another negative is that you can’t really cook dinner in your pajamas.

So last night, even though it is winter, I fired up the grill to make dinner. First I wrapped some baking potatoes in foil, and set them up on the shelf, a bit aways from the burners. I let them sit there as the grill got hot and hotter. In the meantime, I made up rub (from the Cook’s Illustrated Best Recipe cookbook that I got for Christmas) for the flank steak. It was basically a couple of tablespoons of ground cumin and chili powder. About half of that of ground coriander, some pepper, a little bit of cinnamon, some dried chili flakes and some salt. I did those puréed parsnips, but also made some steamed carrots as insurance.

With about 15 minutes left for the potatoes I put the flank steak on the grill. Turned it after seven minutes and then let it cook for about 5 or so minutes more. The potatoes continued cooking while the steak “rested.” And that was dinner. The Husband and The Girl took doll-sized bites of the parsnips, but the flank steak and potatoes were a hit.

1 comment:

SF Mom of One said...

I am imagining some kind of Rube Goldberg machine, allowing you to flip from inside. Want to invent it with me? We can sell it on TV.