Cooking barbecue food is relatively easy, but do you know when your food is properly cooked to a hygienic standard?
The only way to know for certain is by using a good quality barbecue thermometer and understanding the different temperatures at which different meats are considered fully cooked.
This is what you need to look out for and why you should always use a good quality BBQ thermometer when cooking your barbecue food.
1) There are 3 important temperatures with which every barbecue cook should be familiar with:
a) External Temperature – determines if your food is going to cook quickly or not depending on what the temperature is outside.
b) Grill Temperature – what the temperature is in the cooking chamber of your grill. This will help you determine how long it will take the meat to cook. For example, at 350 degrees, meat will cook at approximately twenty minutes per pound. So, a ten pound chicken will take approximately 3:33 hours to completely cook at 350.
c) Internal Meat Temperature – this is your “target” temperature. It tells you if your meat has come up to the proper temperature and is ready to consume.
2) You should remember that many meat thermometers do not provide an accurate reading. To find out if your BBQ thermometer is accurate or not, simply place a pan of cold water on your cooker, and bring the water to a rolling boil at 212 degrees. Place the stem of the thermometer into the pan of water for 60 seconds. If it is properly adjsuted, the barbecue thermometer should read 212.
3) You should only buy a thermometer that comes with a nut on the rear of the dial case. This allows you to optimise the dial indicator by using some pliers to correct the setting.
4) Temperature forks do not perform very well. In preference, you should always opt to use an accurate instant display meat thermometer and use it every time you have a barbecue.
5) Instant display and handheld thermometers should be left in the food for around 60 seconds to get an accurate reding and should not be left attached for the whole duration of cooking.
Wireless BBQ thermometers are extremely popular as they enable you to take temperature readings while you are away from the BBQ grill at a considerable distance. Allowing you to keep a close eye on an accurate temperature reading while you can get on with other things.