Dutch people have told me that the way I grill is all wrong. There’s no charcoal in my grill, my food is properly cooked and has a nice color. So I must be doing something wrong, right?
The way the Dutch grill, or barbecue, is by lighting charcoal under a rack and roasting several kinds of meat over that. The result is burnt meat with a raw interior. You eat outside with sides of salads and bread and sauces, preferably embellished with ants and sand.
Now that the weather is getting nicer, I’m grilling more than I did. It’s just more comfortable to stand outside now. We still eat inside though, from actual china with silverware (no paper and plastic) as around dinnertime it’s starting to get chilly outside. And because we prefer not to eat ants. It’s strange, I know. But that’s just who we are.
Last weekend I decided to finally smoke something on that big fancy grill of mine. I’d bought some hickory chips and found a suitable aluminum bowl. I soaked the chips and placed them in the bowl, directly over the flames of my grill. I placed a lightly seasoned piece of chicken breast on the other side of the grill, so it wouldn’t cook quickly and close up to the smoke. I closed the lid, kept my eye on the temperature once in a while and just let it go.
Since my grill is in essence a grill and not a full-on smoker, it doesn’t render an overly smokey product. Especially since it took a little longer than I had estimated. So about 10 minutes before I wanted to eat dinner, I moved the chicken closer to the fire. Still not on top, but close enough to get some extra heat and seal the deal.
The result was a lightly smoked chicken breast flavored with a hint of mixed seasoning, and a subtle smokey flavor. It was moist and wonderful. No blackened raw product, but tender moist fully cooked white meat with a slightly tanned exterior.
I served the chicken with a nice fresh spring salad. Tomato, red pepper, red onion, lots of cilantro and some pink sea salt and olive oil scooped over some young leaf lettuce.
We ate at a nice set table. Our food wasn’t hazardous to our health, not raw, nor black, and not embellished with ants and sand. We loved the subtle taste of our chicken and the strong and powerful taste of our fresh spring vegetables.
So please, charbecuers of the world, tell me, what exactly did I do wrong?
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