Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Grilling The Perfect Steak is a Fast Growing Competitive Sport

Steak Cookoff Association Logo
Brett Gallaway, Steak Cookoff AssoiationCooking the perfect steak is the holy grail for most grillers worth their salt. Now it can pay big money too! Over the past 5 years steak cook-offs have exploded onto the competitive barbecue scene. The Steak Cookoff Association was formed recently to help sanction and grow the competitive sport of grilling steaks. Brett Gallaway and Ken Phillips, the two fellows who created SCA were one of the winningest teams in steak cook-offs. Brett and Ken won the World Championship in 2011 and over a dozen first place finishes over the past few years. Brett was also featured in a Walmart commercial grilling steaks at Southfork Ranch! Now they're sanctioning events and helping create contests nationwide and in Europe. The first international SCA event was recently held in the Netherlands in early April with great success.

GrillGrate Steak ChallengeGrillGrate is proud to be a sponsor of the Steak Cookoff Association and recently introduced the GrillGrate Steak Challenge. GrillGrate is adding to the prize purse paying $500 to the top placing GrillGrate finisher in designated SCA contests in 2015.

Last weekend was leg #2 of the GrillGrate Steak Challenge. The winner was Cougar Pit of Magnolia, Arkansas.  Dave Nelson and Robert Baxley are no strangers to Steak Cook-offs. For the past 5 years Dave Nelson has run the WorldChampionship Steak Cookoff® in Magnolia, Arkansas. Along the way he decided it was more fun to particiapte. Now he and Robert compete most every weekend in the spring and summer.

first place steakThink you can grill a great steak? Join the SCA and
find out what all the fun and excitement is about!

Learn more about grilling the perfect steak and steak cook-offs:

Friday, April 24, 2015

The Grate Debate... Go on Top or Replace with GrillGrates

This is the question that gas grillers have to decide and this blog post is designed to help that decision.

When we introduced GrillGrate eight years ago, it was one size and one application, to sit on top of the existing surface of any grill, like re-surfacing a road by going on top of the old one. We began offering longer lengths and different shapes to cover more and more grill surface and more types of grills. Last year we began a custom cutting service due to strong demand for precise lengths. WHY? To replace the old, rusty, nasty grill surface, not sit on top of it. 

My grill is two years old and my grates are shot. We hear this every day.

We've always believed that over time GrillGrate would become a standard grill surface, not just an accessory. Today many of our customers are covering most or all of their surface either on top or replacing the existing grates. We are now in the business of full grill replacements as well as an "on top" solution.

Weber Spirit Grill with GrillGratesGrillGrates cook food identically whether they sit on top of existing cooking grids or not.
The difference is how the grill performs and it can be a big difference, especially if the old grates are cast iron. Cast iron is a heat sink. It takes a long time to get hot and a long time to cool down.  The opposite is true with aluminum. Stainless steel does not slow down GrillGrates heating up as much as cast iron.

Replacing your grates with GrillGrates will turbo-charge the
Charbroil grill with GrillGrateseffectiveness of your grill:
  • Very responsive- faster to heat up and cool down, and adjust grill temperatures.
  • More efficient- GrillGrates trap and hold more of a grills' heat, so gas consumption will be less. That saves you money each time you grill.
Weber Genesis Grill with GrillGrates
Precautions with GrillGrates in complete grill replacements:
  • Your grill will run significantly hotter, you may never use high heat setting again.
  • Clean out the grease tray and any grease in older grills before installing replacement GrillGrates.
  • Ideally, leave a gap on the left and right to allow heat to escape into the hood. The gap helps
    keep heat from building up inside the  The GAP is your friend and can be used to separate your grill into zones for searing and roasting as shown. 

2 zone grilling with GrillGrate
Need help deciding the best GrillGrate solution for your grill?
Now there are two ways to re-surface your grill with GrillGrates.  On top or a full grill replacement.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Grate Spring Cleaning!

After a long hard winter, it was time to clean my GrillGrates and tune up my grills. The GrillGrates have not been off my grills since last spring- so it was time for their once a year deep cleaning.

Here are the steps to deep clean and “re-set” your GrillGrates:
  1. Remove GrillGrates to a driveway or area suitable for hose and water.
  2. Use the GrateTool on each panel starting at the hinge and scrape the build-up off as much as possible.
  3. Soak in a large (long) plastic container. I used Simple Green this year based on positive feedback from customers. 10:1 dilution. Soak for minimum of 3 hours, even overnight.
  4. Remove from soaking and use a scrubby on the raised rails and in the valleys. The rails should be smooth and slick after using the scrubby.
  5. You can also use brillo on the raised rails if they are not smooth and slick after using the scrubby.
  6. Hose off to rinse any remaining residue away.
  7. Back to the grills for a long summer ahead of grate grilling!

Other Deep Cleaning Methods:

  1. Power washing also works well.
  2. Face-down burn-off, just don't go to your neighbors for a beer! This will dry out the cooking rails requiring re-seasoning.
  3. Self cleaning oven works well but only if you have good exhaust. Do not use your oven to burn off without good exhaust- the smell is not something you want in the house. This will also require re-seasoning.

Do NOT Use:
  1. Aluminum foil over hot GrillGrates as it can cause temperatures to spike to over 1000F and cause warping or even melting.
  2. Oven cleaner or other caustic degreasers as they will pit and tarnish GrillGrates over time.

Got any tips to share how your care and clean your GrillGrates?

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Back to The Griller's Diet

Now its official, I brought out the summer shorts over the weekend and they confirmed what my tight jeans were telling me... I packed on a few pounds over the winter and it looks like I gave up a belt notch too!
Time to get back to the griller's diet that helped me drop those pounds and inches in the first place. I've dedicated April to be  healthy grilling month with two simple rules to grill by:
  1. Never let the meat grill alone. I'm taking this one a bit further by dedicating a grill just to vegetables when we have friends and family over for dinner. Family style vegetables off the grill really helped my broaden my eating habits.
  2. Grill more fish, chicken and lean. You would think we're practicing for Steak Competitions with the amount of red meat we grill. Time to sharpen the shears and get spatchcocking chicken! Instead of rib-eye steaks, I'll be grilling salmon and tuna like a steak- hot and fast!

Two Zone Grilling Vegetables Roasting while Steaks are Searing

These vegetables are the top 5 vegetables that are most often on my grills. They pack tremendous health benefits beyond helping with weight!  GrillGrate, Eat Well on the Grillers Diet.

Food Antioxidants Benefits
Beets Betanin and vulgaxanthin, Lutein and zeaxanthin antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support. Protects the skin and promotes healthy eyes
Red Bell Peppers Cartenoids-alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein, cryptoxanthin and zeaxanthin. Vitamins C prevention of cardiovascular disease and prevention of type 2 diabetes. Promotes healthy eyes. Anti-cancer benefits, anti-inflammatory properties
Sweet Potatoes Beta-carotene, peonidins and cyanidins, sporamins antioxidant properties and anti-inflammatory properties, helps prevent oxidative damage to our cells, may reduce the risk of breast and other types of cancer, promotes healthy eyes
Yellow Squash alpha-carotene and beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin, and beta-cryptoxanthin, Vitamin C prevention of cardiovascular disease and prevention of type 2 diabetes. Promotes healthy eyes. Anti-cancer benefits, anti-inflammatory properties
Asparagus asparanin A, sarsasapogenin, protodioscin, and diosgenin, quercetin, rutin, kaempferol and isorhamnetin, vitamin C, beta-carotene, vitamin E, and the minerals zinc, manganese, and selenium, glutathione Anti-inflammatory, reduces risk of type 2 diabetes and heart disease, helps regulate blood sugar, supports healthy eyes