Monthly Archives: November 2012

Cheddar and Roasted Garlic Stuffed Hamburgers

For many of you, it may be getting a little colder outside, but for some of you, grilling waits for no man.  Bundle up and grill up some of these quick-cooking (5 minutes per side) burgers for a hearty meal for your family and friends.  Cheese-stuffed burgers are one of life’s drool-enducing miracles; enjoy this one in the warmth of your home, maybe with some sweet potatoes left over from Thanksgiving.  Happy grilling!


Cheddar and Roasted Garlic Stuffed Hamburgers (from Sargento)

  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 12 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 lbs. ground beef chuck
  • 8 slices medium cheddar cheese
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 Kaiser rolls, sliced in half

1. Preheat gas grill to medium-high heat, or prepare charcoal grill and raise temperature to medium-high heat.

2. Heat olive oil in small frying pan over medium-low heat.  Add garlic cloves, and cook until golden brown on edges and soft, about 5 minutes.

3. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the garlic cloves to a paper towel.  Reserve 2 tablespoons of the garlic-flavored oil and refrigerate the remaining oil for another use.

4. Shape ground beef into 8 patties, each about 1/2-inch thick.  Fold 4 of the cheese slices into quarters. Place 3 roasted garlic cloves and 1 slice folded cheese in the center of each of 4 patties.  Top with remaining 4 patties.  Pinch together the edges of the burgers to seal completely.  Brush stuffed patties with 2 tablespoons of the reserved garlic oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

5. Grill 5 to 6 minutes per side, or until the internal temperature of the meat is 160°F.  Top burgers with remaining 4 slices of cheese.

6. Place rolls on cooking grate, cut sides down, and continue grilling for 1 minute or until cheese is beginning to melt and bread is lightly toasted.  Serve burgers on rolls with favorite condiments.


Honey Grilled Sweet Potatoes

These grilled sweet potatoes are so good you’ll want to make them all year round, not just on Turkey Day!  They’re extremely easy to make.  Just remember to keep an eye on them to make sure they don’t burn.  Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Char-Griller, and, as always, happy grilling!


Honey Grilled Sweet Potatoes (by Derrick Riches)

  • 1 pound sweet potatoes
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 butter

1. Preheat grill to medium heat.

2. Clean sweet potatoes, cutting off any bad spots. Cut into 1/2 inch slices.

3. Place sweet potatoes on the grill and cook for about 8-10 minutes on one side.

4. Soften the butter, either in a skiller or in the microwave, and mix with the honey.

5. Spread mixture over slices and turn. Continue grilling for about 6-8 minutes.

6. Turn and spread on more honey butter. Continue grilling until honey butter bubbles and sweet potatoes are cooked through.

Grilling with Charcoal: A Guide

We at Char-Griller produce several different types of grills.  We have propane grills, dual fuel grills, Kamado style grills, and standard charcoal grills.  We started out with charcoal grills, because they are popular, straightforward, and a classic choice for the avid griller.  Using charcoal is an art, as many of  you know, and it’s one that takes time to master.  However, to get you started, we want to bring you a brief guide to grilling with charcoal.

Charcoal Choices

The two main types of charcoal to choose from are charcoal briquettes and lump charcoal.  Charcoal briquettes are essentially compressed charcoal made from sawdust, mixed with a binder such as starch to hold it in a uniform shape.  Briquettes look like this:


The other type, lump charcoal, is made directly from petrified wood.  Its shape is naturally-occurring, and looks more like a piece of wood than a brick.  We generally recommend it because it produces less ash than briquettes do, and it contains no additives or fillers, which makes for more efficient burning, a nicer flavor, and an all-natural grilling experience, too!  Lump charcoal looks like this:

Lighting the Charcoal

There are several different methods for lighting charcoal of either type.

METHOD #1: To light charcoal briquettes, stack 50-60 briquettes in a pyramid on your firegrate.  Saturate with lighter fluid, or use a fire starter briquette made of sawdust and wax.  (Use lighter fluid at your own risk, as it can cause your food to have an unpleasant taste.)  Light coals in several places, and close lid of grill.  After the briquettes turn gray and ash over, spread the coals out and start cooking.

METHOD #2: Use a charcoal chimney to start your coals.  Fill the top of the chimney with the desired amount of either lump charcoal or briquettes, place a highly flammable firestarter material (such as newspaper) in the bottom portion, and place the chimney on your cooking grate.  Light the newspaper underneath, and let burn until the charcoal on top of it catches fire.  Once the coals have turned gray and ashed over, dump them onto your firegrate, and you’re ready to cook.  An alternate method of using the chimney would be to fill the top with charcoal and place on a lit propane side burner, if you have one, until the coals have ashed over.

METHOD #3: This is specifically for Kamado grills, but can be applied with some modifications to any charcoal grill.  Make a pyramid of about 1 1/2-2 lbs. of lump charcoal in the center of the firegrate (about the weight of 2 12-oz. sodas).  Light using a charcoal chimney (see above) or a fire starter, which usually takes the form of a briquette of sawdust and wax.  Leave the lid open until the coals are lit, and there is no more black smoke coming from them.  The smoke should be white or clear, and there should be no flames coming from the coals.  Fire starters or starter sticks (we recommend using starter sticks without kerosene, fats, or scents) should be completely burned away before you start cooking.

Regulating the Temperature

Use your dampers (both on your smokestack and on the side or bottom of your grill) to regulate the flow of oxygen to your fire, and thus your temperature.  Different models will work differently; for example, the Kamado grill is designed with a completely different smokestack and ashpan assembly than our barrel-style grills.  However, in general, you can assume that the more you open the damper next to the coals, the hotter the fire will be, because more oxygen is being allowed to get to the fire.  For our barrel style grills, like the Super Pro, Outlaw, and Wrangler, the long smokestack has a flap damper on it.  To keep the heat trapped in the grill and raise the temperature, keep this flap closed.  On the Kamado, keep the top smokestack damper open for more heat.  If you have an adjustable firegrate ashpan, you can use its height to regulate how close your coals are to your food.

After Grilling – Extinguishing and Dumping the Charcoal

In general, you can simply close the lid of the grill, latch it if applicable, close all dampers, and allow the fire to suffocate until the coals are no longer burning.  Wait several hours and dump the ashes when they are completely cooled.  Make sure not to leave them much longer than that, because leaving ash in your ashpan can cause premature rust and deterioriation in the ashpan.

Be sure to stay safe when cooking on a grill.  When in use, keep your grill at least 15 feet away from your house and anything flammable.  And above all, enjoy the experience.  Happy grilling!

Grilled Garlic Lime Shrimp

Seafood lovers rejoice! For this garlic lime shrimp is extremely simple to make, yet packed with flavor, so it’s even easier to eat.  Shrimp skewers are a grilling classic, and this take on them is sure to be delicious.  Happy grilling!

Grilled Garlic Lime Shrimp (by Joshua Bousel)

For the Marinade

  • 1 small jalapeno pepper, stemmed and seeded
  • 1/4 cup fresh juice from 3 to 4 limes
  • 4 medium cloves garlic
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon zest from 1 lime
  • 1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, peeled, deveined, and rinsed
  1. To make the marinade, place jalapeño, lime juice, garlic, olive oil, chili powder, salt, and lime zest in a blender. Blend into a puree until garlic and jalapeño are completely chopped.
  2. Place shrimp in a large resealable plastic bag. Pour in marinade and toss to combine. Let marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes while preparing the grill.
  3. Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all the charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and spread the coals evenly over entire surface of your firegrate. Set cooking grate in place, cover grill and allow to preheat for 5 minutes, or until it reaches medium-high heat. Clean and oil the grilling grate. Grill shrimp over high heat until just cooked through, about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove to a platter and serve immediately. Enjoy!

Steak Fajitas

There is not much that tastes better than juicy, flavorful grilled steak.  Add some spices, tequila, veggies, and a tortilla, and you’ve got the perfect do-it-yourself Mexican dish – fajitas!  You can substitute chicken, pork, or shrimp, but steak fajitas take the cake in our book.  Olé and happy grilling!

Steak Fajitas (by Nibble Me This)

For the Marinade:

  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1/4 cup lime juice
  • 1/4 cup tequila
  • 1-2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon oregano
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

For the Fajitas:

  • 1 1/2 lb flat iron steak, flank steak, or skirt steak
  • 1 bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • flour tortillas, shredded cheese, lettuce, diced tomatoes, salsa, sour cream, and/or your favorite toppings

1. Whisk together all marinade ingredients.

2. Set aside 2-3 tablespoons of the marinade. Use the rest to marinate the steak and veggies for 1-2 hours.

3. Grill the steak over direct heat at 500°F for 4-5 minutes per side.

4. Add the veggies to a griddle for during the last two minutes of cooking.  You can sear the steak over the grill while you cook the veggies on the griddle at the same time. You could also use a small cast iron skillet as your “griddle” for the veggies.

5. Thinly slice the steak and assemble with the toppings you like.  Enjoy!

Smoked Barbeque Pulled Pork

We at Char-Griller are from the South.  Which means we love – I mean LOVE – our barbeque.  Beef brisket, ribs, chicken – you name it, we’ll smoke it ’til it falls apart, toss it in our favorite barbeque sauce, and serve it with beans, greens, and Brunswick stew.  And lots of sweet tea.  But probably our favorite type of barbeque is pulled pork.  In fact, pulled pork and barbeque are often synonymous in the South.  This recipe is a traditional Carolina-style recipe (that’s also used here in Georgia) that’s sure to transport you, teleporter-style, straight to our area of the country.  Happy grilling!

Smoked Barbeque Pulled Pork (recipe by Derrick Riches)

  • 1 boneless pork butt (about 5-6 pounds)

For Rub:

  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper, ground
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne, ground

For Baste:

  • 1 1/2 cups cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup Bourbon whiskey
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 4 Chipotle Chile peppers, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne, ground

In a small mixing bowl, combine all rub ingredients. Coat pork shoulder with seasonings and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 8 to 24 hours.

Preheat grill to medium heat. Place pork shoulder on grill and smoke shoulder using hickory chips. Make sure wood chips are soaked and drained before using. Add charcoal and wood chips as necessary to keep temperature at medium, or between 200 – 225°F. Smoke pork shoulder for 5-6 hours or until internal temperatures reach 185°F. Apply baste every 20 minutes during the last few hours of cooking. Remember to boil any remaining basting sauce before using it on shredded pork.  Put on a bun topped with cole slaw, or eat by itself!  Serves 6-8.

Using Your Kamado Smokin’ Stone

Our newest grill models, the Kamado Kookers and Akorn, have been some of our most popular grills since their initial release in 2011.  Since then, we’ve gotten countless requests for accessories to go with the Kamado.  We have come out with several different products that work wonderfully in conjunction with this type of grill, but the most sought-after accessory by far is the Smokin’ Stone.  This accessory is ideal for someone who wants to use their Kamado grill to smoke their food, or cook it indirectly.  But once you have the stone, there are a few different ways you can use it.

1. First, you can place the Smokin’ Stone in the firebowl of the Kamado, underneath the cast iron cooking grate, without anything on top of it.  To smoke a roast or ribs, place the cooking grate over the Smokin, Stone, then place your drip pan on top of the grate, with your U-rack or chicken rack on top of that.

2. Place the Smokin’ Stone in the firebowl of the Kamado, underneath the cast iron grate, but this time, put your drip pan on top of the stone.  Above that, your meat, with or without a rack, will sit on top of your cooking grate.

3. Place the Smokin’ Stone in the firebowl of the Kamado, but do not place the cooking grate over it.  Rest the drip pan and either U-rack or poultry rack on top of the stone.  This configuration is useful for a large turkey.

4. To make a pizza in your Kamado, you can rest the pizza either directly on the Smokin’ Stone without using the cooking grate, or you can place the pizza on the cooking grate, depending on the recipe you use.

The Smokin’ Stone is probably the most versatile Kamado accessory that we offer, and it is well worth picking one up.  It is available to order on our website or over the phone by calling (912) 638-4724.  Our customer service hours are M-F 8:30-5 EST.

Happy grilling!