Friday, February 6, 2009

Friday Food for Thought—Cooking with Fire, Part I

This Christmas my family received a pair of hot stone grills as a gift. They’re for tabletop cooking, and each grill consists of a flat piece of actual stone, a stainless steel stand, and two refillable burners, like the ones you’d use under a fondue pot. Last weekend was our first foray into hot stone grilling, and everyone declared it a success!

The stones and stands go into a 450-degree oven for fifteen or twenty minutes, then they need to be transferred to the table. The grills are quite heavy and at this point they’re very hot, so have to be handled with care.

We grilled strips of rib eye steak in a balsamic-rosemary marinade, garlic lime prawns, veggie kabobs and asparagus spears.

We steamed the asparagus for a couple of minutes, then lightly brushed it with olive oil and lemon juice before grilling. How’s this for mouth-watering yumminess?

Hot stone grilling is fun and social, and it's an economical alternative to going to a restaurant for a special occasion. We’ll definitely get more use out of our grills. I’m on the lookout for new ideas and recipes so if you have any, please share!

Until next time,

PS: As today’s title implies, there’ll be more cooking with fire this month. Keep checking back!


Anonymous said...

looks yummy, Lee. Any chance you might share the recipes?

Anonymous said...

I'd eat that! - Geneva

Gillian Layne said...

That is so neat! I've never heard of those before, but I'm sure my girls would love that!

Yes, please share recipes. :)

Lee McKenzie said...

Marion, the recipes I used are simple and quick to prepare. And it's a good idea to lightly brush the grills with cooking oil before grilling.

Balsamic Rosemary Marinade (for the beef)

1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons dried rosemary leaves, crumbled
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon granulated sugar

Mix everything together and marinate the beef for 15 to 20 minutes. This is also my favorite marinade for bbq'd steack.

The prawns were marinated in equal parts olive oil and lime juice, along with some minced garlic. To boost the flavor you can also toss in some freshly grated lime peel. For best results, the prawns should only be marinated for 10 to 15 minutes before going on the grill.

The veggie kabobs were marinated in olive oil, balsamic vinegar and minced garlic.

We're big garlic fans at my house!

And as I mentioned, the asparagus spears were brushed with olive oil and lemon juice before grilling.

The two best parts of this are the ease of preparation, and that everyone does their own cooking!

Lee McKenzie said...

Hi, Geneva! Thanks for checking out my blog. In addition to this being a fun and social way to eat, it's really basic, wholesome food.

Lee McKenzie said...

Gillian, until we received the grills as a gift, we had never heard of them either.

I wouldn't recommend this for young children - the grills get very hot - but teenagers would love it!

Rachel said...

See, this is why I make sure I've got something healthy to snack on before I read your blog, Lee – I always get so hungry.

The food looks delicious and your recipes are so sensible for real-life families!

My version of cooking with fire today is to put a pot of beans in the (gas) oven to bake – an easy Sunday-night supper.
When they're almost done, I'll sprinkle a mixture of rice flour, olive oil and allspice over some frozen local blueberries and slide them into the oven for my take on blueberry crisp.

Lee McKenzie said...

Your blueberry crisp sounds yummy, Rachel! Quick and easy, too.