Indoor Grilling – what to do when outdoor grilling isn’t an option

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preparation of chicken shish kebab on skewersIf you're missing the delicious results of grilling, you can simulate it during winter. Although it's not exactly the same as grilling outdoors, you can grill indoors.

Before we discuss it, however, it is very important to note that it is NEVER okay to use an outdoor grill indoors. Nor should you ever use an outdoor grill in a garage or in an enclosed porch. The fumes are extremely dangerous and can be fatal.

That said, there are a few ways you can grill indoors, using the proper equipment. Three of the choices are:

Electric grills (like an indoor hibachi grill) that are made specifically for indoor grilling.

Grill pans or griddles that are made to go over the stovetop.

Two-sided contact grills that are designed to cook both sides of the food at once. (Like a waffle iron is designed.)

Once you have your equipment of choice, grilling takes on a fun twist with indoor grilling. You can grill almost anything, especially on equipment that has no holes for anything to fall through.

A few indoor grilling tips:

Be sure the grill is fully hot before beginning to cook anything. This will help keep food from sticking, you will get more of that delicious grill flavor, and it will give you the nice sear you're looking for in grilled food.

Trim as much fat as you can off cuts of meat. Not only is this healthier, but it will also cut down on smoking.

– Before grilling, pat off excess wet seasonings and marinades to help reduce burning and smoking of your seasonings.

Run a vent or open a window.

– With contact grills, make sure the food is cooking evenly. Because both the top and the bottom cook simultaneously, you can end up with “hot spots” in foods that don't lay completely flat. To help with this you can: debone meats, butterfly meats, cut them in half, and more. The more even the surface of the food, the more even the contact.

Watch your time and your food. Although grilling indoors is similar to outdoor grilling, it isn't exactly the same. Keep an eye on your food at all times, and adjust the time you'll be grilling it. Times won't be the same as outdoor grilling.

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