Cleanliness is of top-most priority during food preparation and cooking. No one wants to get food poisoning from food that has not been handled properly. The good news is, the chances of food contamination happening can be drastically reduced with the right food preparation habits.
For barbeques, one crucial aspect of a clean workspace is the grill itself. Some people never clean out their grill, out of ‘convenience’ or because they fail to see the value of doing so. However, as we will soon discuss, having a clean grill is paramount to the hygiene and even taste of your grilled food. Here are the benefits of having a clean grill to do your grilling on:
The process of barbeque causes carcinogens to form, especially in the charred parts of meats. It is no coincidence that these are the exact parts that remain on your grill after a barbeque session. The charred bits get stuck on the bars of the grill and can accumulate there if the grill is not cleaned thoroughly. When cooking on the grill the next time, the leftover bits of char and carcinogens can get onto your food. Unless you want the extra ingredients of carbon and carcinogens on your delicious grilled meat, you should clean the BBQ grill before every cooking session.
To enhance the taste
It is not only the health aspect you should be concerned about when bits of old char gets on your food – a true food connoisseur will tell you that it does nothing good for the taste of the food as well! Char is basically carbon, and no one in their right mind will want to ruin their succulent fresh cuts of beef or pork with extra burnt bits that has been sitting on their grill since last year.
To make the aroma inviting
What do you get when you heat up already burnt meat? A nasty smell, that’s what! When you barbeque over a dirty grill, you are burning up all sorts of old food, contaminants, and whatnots, which will most definitely emit an acrid, burning smell. If you don’t want to drive away your guests with the choking smell of excessively burnt food remainders, it’s time to do an intense cleaning of your grill before you start cooking.
For sanitary purposes
Most grills are stored outdoors where it is exposed to bugs and other creatures. A grill that has not been cleaned is a welcome breeding ground for pests that feed on decaying matter. In addition, dirty grills can accumulate unseen bacteria and viruses, which will be detrimental to health if ingested. To avoid the disaster of your party guests going home with tummy aches and diarrhea, it is best to keep your grill clean.
Grills which have not been cleaned may have bits of meat and fats hanging on the bars. During the cooking process, the fats will drip down and cause flare-ups. While some flare-ups are bound to happen during cooking, cleaning out your grill before cooking can reduce the frequency and magnitude of these flare-ups. Fewer flare-ups will mean a safer cooking environment, and less chance of your food becoming charred.
To enhance visibility
When you cook on a dirty grill, your food can appear to become charred quicker than it would take normally. However, this is due to the char residues getting onto your food, rather than your food being cooked for too long. This can mislead you to think that your food is cooked, causing you to serve food that is not fully cooked. Uncooked or partially cooked food can be dangerous, especially for meats like pork and seafood, as the raw meat harbours bacteria that are very dangerous to humans when ingested.
To maintain your grill
Maintaining the cleanliness of your grills is a vital step to maintaining the usability of your grill. You don’t want to have to replace your grill year after year, just because you didn’t clean it out before. A grill that is not cleaned regularly can lead to corrosion or chipping, which is not only unsightly, but unhealthy if cooked on. Chemicals from the material of the grill coating can come off onto the food, leading to health problems when consumed.
Hopefully, these reasons are enough to convince you to clean out your grill before your next barbeque session. Along with calling for BBQ catering and inviting your favourite people, make grill cleaning part of your pre-BBQ party routine, for a healthier, cleaner, and tastier BBQ session!