Start of the barbecue season: tips for proper barbecuing

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Barbecue without health risks

Summer time is barbecue time. In order for the barbecue to be a tasty pleasure and not harm your health, there are a few details to consider. For example, the coal should always be thoroughly annealed and the distance between the embers and the grillage should not be too small. Extra grill trays are also recommended to minimize the health risk.

The warm weather of the past few days was the reason for many Germans to open the barbecue season. Grilling is also becoming increasingly popular among vegetarians. Instead of meat, tofu, cheese or vegetable burgers are simply put on the grill. In principle, however, some tips from the barbecue experts should be taken into account, so that barbecuing is the hoped-for pleasure.

Make sure that the grill is in a stable position. The basis of the grill is a proper set-up. This needs a firm footing to avoid the risk of tipping over and subsequent burns. The charcoal should be kindled some time before the barbecue actually starts and then it usually takes half an hour to an hour to properly heat up. Only when a white layer of ash has formed on the coal can the meat or the fish or the vegetables be put on the grill. There must be a sufficient distance between the grillage and the embers so that the food does not burn. Because the black charred grillware is not only a taste disaster, but also a health burden. Therefore, grilling is recommended at lower temperatures or with a greater distance between rust and embers.

Increased risk of burns for grill masters The grill master should make sure that his clothing is not too easily flammable. Special grill aprons, grill gloves and a neat grill set are ideal here. Why such protective gear is recommended is easy to guess by looking at the number of annual barbecue accidents. Around 4,000 barbecue accidents are reported every year, including 500 with serious injuries, according to the “Freie Presse”. Those affected often suffer from the consequences of their burns for a lifetime. Therefore, especially for the grill master, clothing is recommended that does not go up in flames at the first spark

Barbecue trays with a positive effect on health Barbecue trays do not meet with unreserved enthusiasm among barbecue fans, but they have two uses. On the one hand, they catch the fat, which could otherwise drip down and catch fire, on the other hand, they avoid the formation of carcinogenic substances that can result from the burning of animal fat, marinades or frying liquid. So the use of the extra grill trays is definitely recommended. Alternatively, the food can also be cooked in aluminum foil to avoid unnecessary pollution.

Not every meat is suitable for grilling In addition to the classic sausages and steaks, the dishes that come to the grill here in Germany increasingly include fish and vegetables. Even sweets and fruit are prepared by real barbecue lovers over the embers. In general, however, meat in its countless variations is still the most common grill food in Germany. However, not every meat can be easily prepared on the grill. Salted meat and sausage products are generally prohibited, since the curing salt can form carcinogenic nitrosamines at high temperatures. With poultry meat in particular, care must be taken to ensure that it is well fried in order to kill any germs it may contain. In a recent report, the Techniker Krankenkasse (TK) warned against possible Campylobacter infections due to insufficiently heated poultry meat when barbecuing, based on data from the Robert Koch Institute (RKI). (fp)

Also read about barbecuing:
Grilling marinades reduce cancer risk
Red meat can cause bladder cancer
Red meat increases mortality
Meat favors pancreatic cancer
Red meat increases the risk of diabetes
Do vegetarians live longer?
Vegans live healthy with risks

Image: Klaus Steves /

Author and source information

Video: HOW to GRILL a STEAK by Master Chef Robert Del Grande


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