I have vibrant BBQ and grill memories. When my husband and I returned to Hamburg, Germany where I lived as a teenage exchange student, my host family became so excited that Canadians were coming that they went and purchased a BBQ and assembled it in front of us! On another occasion in Martha’s Vineyard, a beautiful charcoal BBQ evening resulted in breaking an original rifle last fired on the Mason-Dixon line (I was at the home of a Dixon). Whoops. My first experience barbequing by myself was on the roof of my Annex condo in Toronto, when I lit it closed and just about annihilated my lashes and eyebrows upon later opening the lid.
No surprise, then, that in a survey commissioned by M&M Food Market says that only 19% of women consider themselves grilling experts. What is surprising, though, is that only 23% of grillers believe they are skilled. In most households, 76% of men run the grill but only 39% of their partners think they are good at it. Sound familiar?
We’ve got a ton of grilling tips because, despite my unsuccessful inauguration into the BBQ scene, we now grill or use the smoker almost daily. Our sons now tackle the task of compiling dry rubs, and the BBQ shows on the Food Network are usually what pop up when we turn on the TV. Lately, we have been doing more boating and beach picnics. When I discovered the revamped M&M Food Markets, I was excited to put frozen food to test on our weekends away. Food frozen properly acts as freezer packs in the cooler – ideal for a beach BBQ, boating or camping. The new food commitment for M&M Food Market means that over 90% of its products sold have no artificial colours, no artificial flavours, no artificial sweeteners and no partially hydrogenated oils (trans fats) – and they are working to make it 100% by the end of 2017. On top of that, 94% of the seafood sourced by M&M Food Market meets their Sustainable Seafood Policy.
They also have meal planning advisors, online BBQ guides and an eOrder system, so you can select all items at home and simply head to your local store for pickup.
I’ve got a few photos of a very successful sailing weekend using M&M Food Market products and a super-hot grill, but first some tips and tricks! We have both male and female readers, and the 23% stat needs to be seriously increased for everyone!!
Creating Mystic Around the Grill
- Think outside the box and mix it up – grill flatbread, pizza, chicken wings and veggies.
- Get the kids involved, either by choosing the food (there are photos on all of the new M+M boxes) or grilling using skewers and flippers.
- Create a backyard burger/steak/chicken bar with tons of condiments and garnishes the kids can choose from to develop their palette and experiment.
BBQ Grill Tips and Tricks
- Preheat grill.
- Start with room temperature meats, and salmon burgers that are frozen solid.
- Pat dry.
- Don’t move it or fuss over it. REPEAT. Leave it be.
- Flip steaks with tongs and never poke with a fork.
- Cook chicken slow and low.
- Brush on sauces that are tomato, sugar or honey-based only during the last five to ten minutes of cooking to avoid scorching the food.
- Add a few ice cubes inside a tinfoil vegetable packet; as the packet heats, the cubes melt and the vegetables steam beautifully.
- A meat thermometer is best, but also poke the meat with a clean finger to learn the textures – spongy or firm?
- A general doneness guideline is: Rare: 4 mins/side, Med: 5 mins/side, Well: 7 mins/side
- CARDINAL RULE: Let it rest, tented with tin foil 5 minutes. Seriously. Trust us. And still keep the poking fork away until you take your first bite.
Our Boating Grill Creations
Our travel creations speak for themselves.. Because M&M Food Market has desserts, sides and appetizers, along with our burgers and steaks, we tried their wings, flatbread, broccoli, stuffed baked potatoes and Apple Blossoms on the grill with great success!
How to grill: once you become skilled, you can do the quarter turn to get crossing grill marks! (Have a competitions… it’s fun!)
Grilled Chicken Wings cooked from frozen.
Bacon-wrapped Filet with a stuffed gourmet baked potato and broccoli.
Apple Blossoms, and a gorgeous sunset!
Whatever you grill and however often, we hope that you gain more confidence and enjoy incredible experiences with your family!
Disclosure: This post has been sponsored by M&M Food Market. All opinions and the desire to keep purchasing the delicious food is our own.