Jun 26Grill Baby Grill

Image from the 2005 Chrysler Hemi Grill Contest

There are 2 areas of my life where I had complete control before I met Gary and now I have none: wine buying and grilling. I don’t know how the wine thing happened, since I love wine and we even got married in Napa, but over the years it did, and as long as there is a bottle ready for the drinking, I’ve realized that I don’t miss having to actually choose and buy it. Occasionally I do worry that he’ll be on a business trip and, in looking for something to pair with my leftovers, I’ll open a $25 or $30 bottle of wine, but hey – I’m worth it!

Losing my grilling privileges on the other hand, is something that has started to really get under my craw. It’s not that I NEED to be the one grilling; I am perfectly content to let Gary own that part of our shared duties. But now that it’s the thick of summer, I’ve realized how nice it would be if I could grill things for Sara’s meals instead of either just cooking them inside, or only giving her leftovers of things Gary has grilled for our dinner the night before.

So last week I broached the subject with Gary, and I’ll admit I expected more resistance.   There are certain things that he thinks are his domain (like taking out the garbage and recycling, so who am I to complain!) and I expected grilling to fall squarely in to this category. But he got what I was saying about feeding Sara and proceeded to give me a refresher grilling lesson.

I bought a new grilling cookbook, Grill Every Day (which is amazing and has become my summer bible regardless of who is manning the grill)  and selected my get back on my grilling horse recipe – Orange and Chipotle Rubbed Chicken.

Pam to oil the grill? check
Grilling tongs? check
Chicken that’s been marinating the past few hours? check

I was ready. Cautiously, I turned the knob on the first burner and depressed the ignition switch. The grill sprung to life with a swoosh. Confidence mounting I moved to knobs for the second and third burners and gave them a twist. On they went. Then I had my first moment of panic. The recipe called for creating an indirect heat zone by turning off one of the burners once it preheated. Made total sense except for one small detail – I had NO IDEA where the burners actually were and couldn’t tell when I turned them one. Were they located horizontally across the grill, like on a stove top, or vertically? I took a guess and just hoped for the best (I should mention that at 5′ 1″ I am not exactly suited to peering into the grill to investigate).

A few minutes later I put the chicken on the grill, and was feeling pretty good about my new found grilling prowess until I opened the lid to check on things and realized I had forgotten to turn it town to medium.   The skin of the drumsticks were turning a lovely shade of charred black.

“Shake it off” I told myself, “Even skilled grillmasters make mistakes from time to time. This is your first time in the game, something was bound to go wrong.” Luckily, that proved to be the only error  the rest of the cooking went without a hitch. Sara loved her drumsticks, and I felt like a proud peacock – a proud mama peacock.

The only thing to do now is figure out what to grill next!