· The Hot Line - Newsletter
May 2012: Barbecued Breakfast

May 2012
Welcome Barbecued Breakfast  12345 Barbecues: not just for dinner any longer. Cooking breakfast on the grill is fun to do because people just don’t expect it. You can get some early morning fresh air AND make yourself look like a creative culinary genius just by grilling something before noon. Most breakfast items lend themselves perfectly to a bit of grilling: eggs, bacon, hash-browns, pancakes, French toast – all of these are ideal for the grill. Cereal’s tough though – we tried Cheerios once and we’re still cleaning them up off the patio.  
Here at The Hot Line we’re all about gender equality. And so, while Father’s Day usually gets lots of attention from the barbecue community, we want to spread the sweet, smoky love to all the muthas out there. This Mother’s Day (Sunday May 13th in case you forgot to mark your calendar), we’re going to tell you non-mothers out there how to grill a special mother’s day barbecue breakfast. Follow our easy steps below and you’ll be the household hero.  
Normally, we only include one recipe in a newsletter. Because this is more of a ‘meal menu’ than normal it’s a bit longer. Rest assured that we will not be billing you more for this edition of The Hot Line than we normally do.

 
Barbecue Tipster Grant’s Bacon This is a terrific way to cook your bacon outside. Now, there’s nothing wrong in my opinion with cooking bacon inside the house. However, if you’re short on indoor cooking space or just want to enjoy the great outdoors with your pork products – this is a great way to get it done on the grill. Grant used to work for us. I don’t know if he came up with this idea himself or stole it - but it’s a good one:  
  First, get your barbecue as hot as you possibly can – keep it on high for 15 minutes with the lid down. And then...turn it off. Completely. Place the uncooked bacon on the grill and quickly close the lid.
 
  Come back after about ten minutes, quickly flip the bacon and close the lid again. After about fifteen more minutes your bacon should be cooked. If it isn’t, repeat the process with tighter flipping times. This works best with cast iron grills but heavy stainless steel grills will work as well. If your grills won’t hold heat well enough – you may have to repeat the process – just make sure you take the bacon off the grill when you’re getting it up to blast-furnace temperatures.

Gotta Have It The sine qua non of grilling breakfast is the griddle. Without one, just stay inside with Count Chocula at breakfast time. Luckily, there are lots of griddles to choose from so there’s no reason to live without (exclusive tip: check out our Deal of The Week during June 19-25 for an unbeatable bargain on a cast iron searing pan). Some barbecues (Napoleon and Broil King for example) have griddles available that are made to replace one or more cooking grills. Otherwise, you can just lay the griddle on top of your existing cooking grills. Right now, we carry three varieties of griddles:  
1. Cast Iron Griddles The classic. Nothing holds cooking heat better than cast iron. A pleasure to cook on and available in a variety of shapes and sizes. You need to keep them ‘seasoned’ – otherwise they rust and become hard to clean.
2. Stainless Steel Doesn’t hold heat like cast iron but will last for years with very little maintenance. Food can stick if you don’t use some oil on it. Our current favourites are the products from Little Griddle – we love the side walls that keep all the food in one place.
3. Red, hot, lava The Island Grillstone is a cross between a ceramic pizza stone and a cast iron griddle. Holds heat very well and diffuses it somewhat so your food is protected from direct heat. Available in round and square.

Meet the Experts
Meet Zena. Zena is a manager at our North Calgary store. A mother of two sensational daughters (Kate and Hayley), Zena is looking forward to being treated regally this mother’s day – especially because her girls not only cook for her but clean up as well. Bonus. Zena is a terrific cook and, having fled the apocalyptic grilling wasteland known as “The United Kingdom” is now extremely comfortable with a grill. She is currently using an eight year old Weber Genesis (her second one). Her favourite meal to grill is lemon chicken (we’ve had it – it’s great, you should ask her to make it for you some day). Her advice to anyone grilling breakfast on the grill is to make sure you have lots of bacon and only use “really, really good maple syrup”. Solid advice. Zena is a proud owner of some exquisite Mallin patio furniture and is a terrific person to talk to if you’re looking for some advice on patio furniture for your own home. As some of you know, we bring in limited quantities of some very high quality furniture. If you’re interested, you should visit soon because it doesn’t last long.

Recipe of the Month Time to grill breakfast for mom!

 Mother’s day grilling The whole point here is to make mom some breakfast on the grill for Mother’s Day. This should prevent another Mothers’ day morning full of frantic shoulder checking and last minute shopping. The grilling procedure for the entire meal is laid out for you in pictures below. It’s simple. Do a good job with this process and then, just maybe, you’ll get a new barbecue for Father’s Day. Here are a few tips so you can get breakfast on the table in good time:

  • Prepare the asparagus rolls the night before so all you have to do is grill them in the morning.
  • Plan on about an hour of time to start and complete the fruit salad. Grilling the pineapple and mango will take a bit more time than you think. The chopping you can delegate to a sous chef if you have one around the house. It’s a good idea to finish the fruit salad early, it can sit and wait for the hot items to come off the grill.
  • I had never made hollandaise sauce before. I was surprised that it wasn’t yellow and was told by the family expert that you need to use the ‘yellow yolked eggs’ if you want the hollandaise more yellow. Go figure.
  • Give yourself an hour to prep, grill and plate the Eggs Benny. Maybe a bit longer. That means, you’re going to need better than two hours to put this meal together in the morning. Say ‘no’ to that ninth can of Old Stock the night before so you give mom a morning she deserves.
  • You’re going to need a griddle for your barbecue. You should have one already of course but, if you don’t have one now – get one. Of course, you should get one at Barbecues Galore.
Asparagus and Salami Mighty-Rolls of Deliciousness We’ve grilled asparagus with bacon before in the Hot Line. This combination of the salami with cream cheese adds a luxurious twist (thanks to Zena for showing us this little trick). You can prepare these rolls the day before and have them ready to hit the grill in the morning. Ingredients
  • A couple of bunches of asparagus
  • Cream cheese of your choosing
  • Some tasty salami (we used hot calabrese which pairs nicely with the comforting, soothing cool of the cream cheese)
 
Lop the woody end off of your asparagus. Sure, you can snap them all by hand but this is quicker and you’re going to be short on time.
Par-boil the asparagus in boiling water for about two minutes. Just enough time to soften the asparagus. This step locks in the bright green colour.
Out of the sauna and into a bowl of ice-cold water to arrest the cooking process. Now your asparagus can sit around for awhile (even overnight if you want) without further attention.
Spread the cream cheese onto your salami. Don’t be shy.
When spreading cream cheese it is preferable to use an on-theme implement. Things just taste better that way.
Take about five pieces of asparagus, lay them in the cream-cheese covered salami and wrap.
Fasten the salami onto the asparagus rolls by putting two toothpicks ‘Kerplunk Style’ through the roll and salami. These rolls are now ready to grill – immediately or the next day.
Best Fruit Salad Ever (well, maybe not ‘ever’ but it’s pretty good) Ingredients
  • Pineapple - mandatory
  • Mango - mandatory
  • Fresh Mint – super mandatory
  • Assorted fruit hangers-on (we used raspberries, blackberries, strawberries and grapes)
 
Assemble your ingredients. Important note: don’t include any sucky melons in your fruit salad. Putting melons in your fruit salad is basically saying to mom: “We don’t love you.”
Mango slicing. We’re going to assume you know how to cut fruit but, if you’re grilling it, there’s a certain way to cut your mango: first, cut it in almost-half avoiding the coarse, hard lump in the middle.
Remove the first almost-half and set aside.
Remove the cold, dead heart from the remaining almost-half and discard.
You’re left with two almost-halves. Try to get the face of each of these pieces as flat as possible so, when grilling, they will get as much exposure to the grill/griddle as possible. You’re looking for maximum charring for this salad.
Cut your pineapple for grilling. For step-by-step instructions see our March 2012 Hot Line Newsletter.
The mango and the pineapple are the only fruits in this particular salad to hit the grill. They obviously don’t need to be cooked but the grilling will make them sweeter and sexier. Plan on leaving them on the grill for about 15 minutes.
Secret ingredient. Chopped mint. This is the difference between “Oh, thanks, you cut up a bunch of fruit and threw it in a bowl – my teeth thank you for the chewing respite provided by your knife-work” to “Wow, it’s amazing how you’ve combined the individual flavours to create a food synergy that’s nearly sexual”.
Slice the mango almost-halves. Slice both vertically and horizontally and then…
…pop out the delicious grilled cubes of mango magic.
Slice your grilled pineapple.
Throw it all in a bowl. You’re done. You could garnish with a bit of Greek yogourt if you wanted to get all Euro.
Eggs Benedict Attention purists: no, there are not poached eggs involved in this recipe. You’ve been warned. Trying to poach an egg on a barbecue seemed as silly as frying a steak so we avoided it. Hardware
  • English muffins
  • Slices of bacon or ham
  • Tomatoes – sliced
  • 4-6 eggs, whisked for scrambling
Software
  • ¼ cup water
  • four egg yolks (you can whisk the whites in with your scrambled eggs above so don’t toss them)
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
 
Lay out your ingredients.
For the sauce, separate the egg yolks from the whites. Slimy.
We get asked about three thousand times a week: “What would I use a side burner on my barbecue for?” This is your answer. However, if you don’t have a side burner you can put the pot right on the grill. Add the water and the egg to a little, heavy grilling pot (we sell these!), whisk with gusto (or chutzpah or moxie) for about five minutes. Once the sauce starts to thicken up, remove from heat and whisk in butter and lemon. Keep it warm but don’t cook it more or it’ll get lumpy.
Whisk 4-6 whole eggs together. You can add the unused egg whites from the hollandaise sauce and a spot of milk if you want. (I once put cumin in scrambled eggs – tasted delicious but the eggs turned sort of green – good for St. Patrick’s day but not so good for mother’s day.) Get the griddle on your barbecue hot, then turn down to low/medium. Good idea to spread a thin layer of olive oil on the griddle and then…pour the eggs on for scrambling.
The eggs will cook quickly on the hot griddle – move fast. Once the eggs are cooked, put them in a bowl and keep them warm on the upper rack in your barbecue.
Put your muffins face down on the griddle for a wee toasting. About five minutes. Add your asparagus that’s been waiting in the wings. They’ll take about ten minutes to char up a bit and get the cheese melted.
Put some sliced tomatoes on the hot griddle. About three minutes a side for a bit of charring.
Remove everything from the griddle and put it on a plate together. On top of the toasted muffins, pile the bacon, egg, and tomato. Top with a healthy dollop of hollandaise sauce.
Make mom a cup of coffee and sit her down for something to eat. Then, relax and bask in the adulation that is sure to come your way (but don’t forget to clean up too).

Ask Dr. McGrillemup Question: Dear Dr. M, Long time reader, first time caller. We have a natural gas barbecue but we’re moving to a new house that does not have a convenient gas connection in the backyard where we want our barbecue. Can we convert our barbecue to use natural gas? Regards, Ken D. Gassey Answer: Hi Ken, You’ve got two options: 1.) convert your barbecue from natural gas to propane, or 2.) have a gas line installed in your backyard where you want it. Both are possible but really, option #2 is the way you should go. Natural gas is clean, cheap and, at current pace of discovery and consumption will last the human race for approximately five xillion years. Our licensed gasfitters are standing by like a SWAT team after a triple espresso; ready, willing and able to install a gas line that works for you. Sincerely, Doctor McGrillemup

The World of Barbecue  
A sprinkler head exploded in BBQ HQ this month – a RIDICULOUS amount of water came out of that thing. In about five minutes it was like a scene from the Poseidon adventure in our office (except we didn’t have Leslie Neilsen as our captain. Oh wait, I guess we sort of did.)
Lots of training going on these days at the stores. In this picture we’ve got the guys from Jackson Grills telling us why their grills are such a good value.
This picture is here for two reasons:
  1. To remind you all that we stock a dizzying assortment of firepits.
  2. To appease this newsletter’s legions of Perry fans (colloquially known as “Perrywinkles”) Please ladies, quit sending us pictures of your new ‘Team Perry’ tattoos.
Here are a few of the legendary lunches we’ve had around our stores this past month:
Curtis went back to basics and grilled some burgers.
Harold Seranda swung for the fence: fish tacos with guacamole/crème fraiche, pico de gallo and shredded cabbage. For dessert: fresh churos with Mexican chocolate sauce. Super, super good.
How about this deal: you send us a picture involving some sort of barbecue, we’ll put it in the next newsletter and we’ll send you a gift certificate for $25 that you can use in any of our four stores (which, as you know, are chock-a-block full of distilled awesomeness). As a tip: maybe next time you’re on vacation and you see someone using a barbecue – you can take a picture and send it our way.

This Month's Winners  
Every single month, we randomly draw four winning names (one per store) from our newsletter mailing list. We only post the winning names below so you’ve got to keep your eyes peeled each month. If you win, you can claim your prize by stopping by the Barbecues Galore in your area with your photo identification. Congratulations to this month's winners of a t-shirt package: Greg Engel (Calgary South) Kailee Hong (Calgary North) Jim Burrows (Burlington) Sean Weir (Oakville)  

Next Month's Issue  
Next month is duck season. With five spices. Stay tuned.

Contact Us  
We're in the service business and we genuinely want to hear your experiences so we can continue to improve. If you've got a problem or concern please contact us at query@barbecuesgalore.ca. If you've had a positive experience and want to tell others about it please tell others using this Google page (this stuff is important to us Canadian retailers in the digital age as we battle the big, bad, box stores). Remember, an archive of our past newsletters can be found at www.barbecuesgalore.ca  

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