I live in So Cali, so I can grill year round and I do! Make kitchen clean up virtually non-existent! Yay! for the poor kid on kitchen duty!
I have been grilling for about 20 years and one thing I know about grilling is that you can’t rush it, no matter what!! 20 years?? (You would think after all that time I would know how to make one of those pig-in-a-pit deals)
Do your burgers fall apart? Quit messing with them. Let ’em cook. Don’t over knead the raw meat and when you shape them, make the centers thinner than the outer edges and they won’t curl up! (How cool is that?) Make sure the ground beef is at least 15-20% fat for outdoor grilling.
Are your steaks too tough? Quit messing with them and DON’T poke them with anything! Makes all the juices jump out of the steak and into the fire and makes for a dry nasty steak. Don’t over cook steaks, either. Best way to tell if a steak is done is to push on it. It gets firmer as it cooks, so if you like it more rare, squishy is good. If you want it more well done, wait a few minutes until it firms up a bit.
Now if you have to marinade, do it in the refrigerator in resealable plastic food storage bags. Makes clean up a breeze!
If you are also using a marinade for brushing the meat during grilling, reserve part of the marinade for brushing before adding the remaining marinade to raw meat, poultry or fish. The same good food safety practice applies to a sauce that will be used for both brushing on meat during grilling and for passing at the table. Make sure you divide the sauce for the two uses before starting to cook.
For grilling fruits and vegetables, lightly coat the grill grate with vegetable oil or cooking spray before placing it over hot coals to keep foods from sticking. Never spray vegetable oil directly over hot coals!! You can also lightly spray the fruit/veggies so they don’t stick to the grate.