Lighting a Charcoal Grill
Before you start lighting up a grill, take a few safety precautions. Always ensure that the grill is kept on a solid, even surface so that it is well balanced. There should not be any long grass, shrubbery or overhangings close to the grill. Also, check to make sure that the vents in the grill are not clogged with ashes and are open so that air can circulate freely.
Now follow the steps as outlined below to start a fire in a charcoal grill.
1. To begin with keep all the items that you will need close to hand so that you do not have to rush for something in the last minute. This will include the bag of charcoal briquettes, a can of lighter fluid and some long handled matches or long-necked butane lighters. One can find lighters specially designed for lighting up grills.
2. About twenty to thirty minutes before you actually need to start cooking, you need to start the fire in the grill. For that, arrange the charcoal in a pyramid shape in the middle of the grill. The pyramid shape ensures that there is enough ventilation for the coals to quickly catch fire.??(How much coal one should use in the grill depends a great deal on the kind of grill you are using – the size, the type – as well as the amount of food that is to be grilled. A great deal also depends on the kind of weather that one anticipates; if it is too cold, there are strong winds or if it is too humid, it may be advisable to use a few more coals. A good thumb of rule to keep in mind is that you should use about thirty coals to grill roughly one pound of meat in ideal conditions.)
3. After arranging the coals, gently douse them with about half a cup of fluid. Typically, about half a cup of fluid for every two pounds of charcoal is considered workable. Let the fluid soak into the coal for about a minute or two. Now use the long handed matches or long handed butane lighter to gently light the coals.
4. You may not see any big flames coming out right away but you will certainly be able to see some smoke coming out from the coals.
5. While you may not see any flames right away, there will be some smoke coming out of the coals. Wait for about half an hour to give the coal enough time to start burning properly. When they look like they are glowing and they are covered with gray ash, you can be sure that the coals are finally burning.
6. Now take these burning coals and spread them evenly at the bottom of the grill. Use tongs to spread the coals in one single layer– use another one while actually grilling the food.
7. If you are still having some trouble starting the fire, just place a newspaper in the grill. You do not need to have too much of it, just a little to start the fire.
8. Never ever use kerosene or gasoline to start the fire. Also, do not spray the lighter fluid on the coals when they are already burning. The entire stream of fluid could catch fire, reach up to you and cause you injury. ?
9. If the fire starts getting a little sluggish or close to going out, do not add any lighter fluid directly to the coals. Just place a few coals in a small metal can, add lighter fluid and then using the long-handled tongs, place them on top of the already burning coals. Use a lighter or match to light them – these will help re-ignite the fire.?
10. Hibachis are charcoal grills though they are smaller in size. To light a fire in them, follow the same instructions as above but use lesser amounts of charcoal.
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