If you are a fan of outdoor cookery then you know just how great grilled food prepared al fresco can taste. But if you, like many people, live in an area where outdoor flamed grills are banned, often called a ‘smoke ban’ something that is increasingly common in apartment complexes and condo developments, then you may fear that your grilling days are over.That does not have be the case though, if you choose the right electric grill.
How to Choose The Right Electric Grill For You
There are those that will try to tell you that an outdoor electric grill is just not a real barbecue These people seem to feel that if you are not burning your hands on hot charcoal (or failing to have hot charcoal because it refuses to light or stay lit) or running to the store to fill up empty propane tanks you are just not doing it right.
The fact is that there are a great many outdoor electric grills that produce just the same kind of tasty and healthful grilled foods as their counterparts, but without much of the mess and extra hassle. And definitely without the big fire risk that barbeques and firepits can sometimes be (and it is that risk of fire damage that is the reason for most grill bans in the first place)
Choosing the right outdoor electric grill for your needs can be hard, as there are often so many models and sizes to pick from. Some of the most popular outdoor electric grills are those that are cart based and fairly compact. These are usually big enough to cook for a small gathering but are easy to clean and then store quite nicely on even the smallest patio or balcony. This models usually only cost $200 or less.
For those who like to barbecue big there are outdoor electric grills that are just as big as any other barbecue out there. They do tend to be a little more expensive than their charcoal or propane cousins but they are far easier to clean and use.
If you have a very limited space in which to grill outside there are a number of good quality smaller outdoor electric grills that are also designed to be compact and pleasing to the eye. These are especially good for apartment dwellers who do not wish to attract the ire of their landlord by having a large grill cluttering up their small balcony and spoiling the look of the complex or building for others (or burning it down come to that matter)
The New Alternative – Electric Smokers
You may not be familiar with a smoker or a smoker grill and what it does, many are not. Even fewer people are really familiar with the concept of an electric smoker grill. You have probably however eaten a number of smoked foods, both cooked and uncooked. The electric smoker is merely a modern way to cook in a very old and traditional manner.
An electric smoker grill works in much the same way as any other kind of smoker. The idea behind smoker cooking is that the food is cooked slowly and over a low heat. Smoking is not a quick process but the results are usually well worth the time.
Any smoker is usually a cylinder which inside basically consists of a “fire box” and a cooking chamber. Whatever heat source you use, whether electric gas or charcoal, the food is smoked by the wood inside the smoker. You do have to choose your smoking woods very carefully, as certain woods produce a bitter taste that is far from pleasant. Some of the favorite woods used by smoking experts are mesquite, hickory, maple and apple. Some recipes may instruct you on what kind of wood to use to get the best flavor.
The advantage of the electric smoker is that is easy to regulate so food can be left smoking for hours without the need for constant attention. The result is almost always meat that is so tender and flavorful that it has to be tasted to be believed.
An electric smoker grill is a double duty appliance. Once the food has been smoked the appliance converts into a regular electric grill to finish the job. This is one method of grilling in which the flavor in no way suffers when using electricity instead of charcoal or propane.