Monday, January 10, 2011


Grilling and barbequing are very close to each other. While in barbecuing, highly seasoned meat is grilled over hot coals, grilling is the form of cooking by the application of direct heat. In other words, grilling involves dry heat applied to the surface of food from below. This form of cooking generally involves lot of direct, radiant heat, and tends to be used for cooking quickly meat. Grilling is often presented as a healthy alternative to cooking with oil, although the fat and juices lost by grilling can contribute to drier food.

Grilling involves a grill (an open wire grid with a heat source above or below), a grill pan (which is like a ordinary frying pan), or griddle (a flat plate heated from below). Heat is transferred to the meat or anything being grilled thermal radiation.  Sometimes people grill sandwiches in a skillet on the stove. 

Direct heat grilling can expose food to temperatures often in excess of 260 °C (500 °F). Grilled meat acquires a distinctive roast aroma from a chemical process called the Maillard reaction. The Maillard reaction only occurs when foods reach temperatures in excess of 155 °C (310 °F).

And while talking of grilling, one also comes to broiling. In broiling, the food lies directly under a continuous heat source. Thus the main difference between grilling and broiling is only the direction of heat. Meat can be broiled by placing it on a rack in a shallow broiler pan. The surface of the meat lies 3 to 5 inches (8 to 13 centimeters) under the flames in a gas range broiler or below the broiler heating unit in an electric oven. Usually the door of is left slightly opened when using electric oven to prevent the air in the oven from becoming too hot.

However, scientists and nutritionists warn against that cooking beef, pork, poultry, and fish at high temperatures can lead to the formation of heterocyclic amines, benzopyrenes, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which are carcinogens (is any substance, radionuclide or radiation, that is an agent directly involved in causing cancer). Therefore proper and extensive marination is recommended which may reduce the formation of these compounds.


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