Barbeque: a noun, a verb, an attitude. Across Canada and the US, the backyard barbecue is a national pastime. We salivate at the thought of putting another steak on the grill. And yet, “barbecuing” and “grilling” are totally different cooking methods mistakenly used to mean the same thing. They’re not.
Grilling is a cooking method that requires dry heat from burning wood, charcoal or gas to heat the cooking surface at a high temperature. Once the food is place on the grill, it cooks pretty quickly.
Barbecuing is a slower process in which the food is cooked indirectly by the heat or the smoke, low and slow.
Toronto has seen an explosion of “sacred fire pits” across the city; each one touting their own smoker, type of wood chips, special cuts of meat, and their own secret sauce, but for those of us who enjoy this cooking ritual at home, here is the quintessential interactive diagram showing the cut and cooking method for our preferred meats.
This Infographic is designed by Jack Thompson from BroBBQ
*Funny coincidence: at this point in writing this article, I’m asked by a fellow patron for the wifi password. He inadvertently notices the title of my article. “Are you involved with food?” He asks. I tell him I publish DINE and Destinations magazine. He replies, “I’m a food scientist. I develop and manufacture spices and seasoning for the food industry.” I ask my new friend, Michael Litvak, what companies he works with, because maybe I know them. “Fire In the Kitchen Spice Co.” He tells me. “Of course I know them!” I exclaim. This is a great local company that makes specialty seasonings and spice blends that are gluten free, like Just Steak, which is flavour-forward and very low in sodium; Burger Batter, which elevates the burger to gastronomic heights; and a wide variety of smoky and savoury blends for veggies, meats and seafood. What are the odds? Not one to miss an opportunity, I had to include it here. If you want to impress your friends, these are products worth investing in to enliven your next barbeque.
Adam Waxman is an award winning travel journalist focusing on food, wine and well being. As well as an actor in film, television and formerly, the Stratford Festival, he is the Associate Publisher and Executive Editor of DINE and Destinations magazine.