When pulling out the Blackstone, the mind typically runs to the best ways to master the meat! But mastering the prep and enhancing the sides will leave the biggest impressions for those who you are cooking for.
My best comparison would be an old golf quip: Driving is for show, but putting in for dough!
Here are 5 tips that every Blackstone chef should use when cooking your favorite meals, straight from those who do it best.
Marinade Before But Leave the Sauce For Last
One common issue most cooks make is confusing marinate with sauce. Marinating food is great and we all love a tender, flavorful bit, but the sauce is best served when you are eating.
Emeril is heard saying numerous times, leave the sauce until the very end! This is great advice because the sauce on the Blackstone will crystallize and char and the flavor is compromised. Hit the sauce at the last minute to acquainted with the food but not on the heat long enough to ruin it.
Cold Sides Need An Extra Dose of Seasoning
The best cuts of meat don’t require much in the way of seasoning, but that is not the case with your non-Blackstone cooked sides.
Wolfgang Puck preaches that sides that are served cold NEED to be seasoned heavily. Vegetables take to seasoning very well and while often overlooked, hitting greens with salt and pepper, or any of your other seasonings will make your cold sides shine.
Hint: If you don’t already, hit your next side salad with a pinch of salt and citrus!
Best Herb Tip Ever
Cutting cilantro for tacos or rosemary to drop on your potatoes is not the most fun work you can do in, so here is a nice tip from Giada to get the herbs ready, quickly.
Instead of plucking the leaves of the stem by hand, use a colander bowl and pull your herbs through the holes, and watch as your leaves quickly separate from the shaft.
How to Grab the Small Egg Shell
If hibachi is a family favorite, or you use your Blackstone as a weekend chef warrior, then Jamie Oliver will have a tidbit you might find helpful.
If you are breaking eggs and lose a piece in the process. Put the spoon down and pick up more eggshells. Yes, shimming the utensils against the side of a bowl can work overtime, grabbing a bigger portion of the eggshell and scooping it will correct the runway problem, plus the small piece will stick better to the the shell.
Try Garlic Later in the Cook
This garlic tip is credited to Guy Fieri and works great with vegetables but really should be a rule of thumb any time you are cooking with garlic.
Use the garlic later in the cook, or really as the last ingredient outside of saucing your dish. Garlic crisps quickly and loses flavor after it gets toasted, but adding it later in the cook will give your dish the nice nutty and caramel kick everyone loves.