by Mario Fiorucci of The Healthy Butcher
Most people associate the heat of summer with the best BBQ experiences. The autumn season however is by far the best time of year to be grilling. The reasons are many: the bounty of an autumn vegetable harvest, the flavor of meat finished on a summer pasture and of course NO BUGS.
Choose your method- charcoal, propane or natural gas – in the end, the most essential item is that which gets cooked. Although we are partial to charcoal grills (Big Green Egg or Lodge Cast-Iron Sportsman’s Grill) you can enjoy an Autumn grill with any of these. Our partiality comes from the “outdoor cooked flavour” that charcoal imparts into grilled foods. There’s just nothing else like it!
Whether you’re grilling corn, sweet peppers, portobello caps, enjoying a beef, pork or game steak, or perhaps you’re grilling a flattened chicken, you’ll agree that the flavor somehow improves by having cooked it in your own backyard. There is something truly rewarding about standing next to the grill as the meat sears and sizzles. You get the sound, smell and temperature – all sending you sensory indicators of the goodness to come.
In Autumn, you can enjoy relaxing with friends without the pesky wasps and somehow the chill in the evening is just the right temperature for a little cuddle with your mate. With the end of summer vacations, and the children back into their school routine, it is a nice reward to grill dinner outside. It is quick, with very little cleanup.
If you want to extend those flavours into the week, you can slow smoke a roast for pulled pork, brisket, ribs or simply grill off a large amount of vegetables to use in your favourite dishes (i.e. quinoa, rice, pasta or even toppings on a pizza).
As the light begins to fade earlier in the evening, we needn’t curtail our enjoyment of outdoor grilling at this special time of year.