Go Back  DVD Talk Forum > General Discussions > Other Talk
Reload this Page >

How do you start your coals for grilling?

Other Talk "Otterville" plus Religion/Politics
View Poll Results: How do you start your charcoals?
Chimney
17
54.84%
Lighter Fluid
4
12.90%
Match Light
4
12.90%
Electric Starter
0
0%
I'm lazy I use a propane grill
6
19.35%
Voters: 31. You may not vote on this poll

How do you start your coals for grilling?

Old 05-18-06, 05:35 PM
  #1  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 379
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
How do you start your coals for grilling?

I used to be a propane grill guy (and still am if it is just for me, so much quicker). But if cooking for more than me and want it good I'll go the charcoal route. It really isn't that much harder. However the grills I use (common grills in the courtyard of our condo building) do not have a removable grate, it only goes up and down. I have always used a chimney, but can't pour it directly into the grill since the grate can't be removed. Instead I pour the coals onto my broiling pan bottom and use oven mits to slide that into the grill, works perfectly fine. However someone told me there is electric grill starters that you stack the coals on, plug in, and it heats up and lights the coals.

Match light and lighter fluid I think influence the taste so I don't use. What about you?
Old 05-18-06, 05:45 PM
  #2  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Nazgul's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Jayhawk Central, Kansas
Posts: 7,125
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
When I was a coal guy, it was an electric starter. Now, since I have a smoker, grilling is done with propane.
Old 05-18-06, 05:58 PM
  #3  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: MI
Posts: 25,061
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Nazgul
When I was a coal guy, it was an electric starter. Now, since I have a smoker, grilling is done with propane.
What he said. The electric starter works well, and leaves no taste.
Hint: Respect the maximum "on" time the directions say. They can burn up if plugged in too long.
Old 05-18-06, 06:00 PM
  #4  
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 379
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by OldDude
What he said. The electric starter works well, and leaves no taste.
Hint: Respect the maximum "on" time the directions say. They can burn up if plugged in too long.
I think I'll be getting one of these. Seems like it will be a lot easier than the whole newspaper/chimney/pouring charcoals option.
Old 05-18-06, 06:09 PM
  #5  
DVD Talk Legend & 2019 TOTY Winner
 
Bacon's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: the 870
Posts: 21,297
Received 4 Likes on 4 Posts
I use lighter fluid
Old 05-18-06, 06:16 PM
  #6  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Kittydreamer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 13,611
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I use a propane grill, not out of laziness but because I have small children and I grill almost daily.
Old 05-18-06, 07:09 PM
  #7  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Madison, WI ("77 square miles surrounded by reality")
Posts: 30,011
Received 2 Likes on 1 Post
Jenn-Air.
Old 05-18-06, 09:06 PM
  #8  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 892
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I switched from a chimney to parafin starters. I was amazed at how much flame those little things put out.
Old 05-19-06, 07:33 AM
  #9  
DVD Talk Legend
 
AGuyNamedMike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: (formerly known as Inglenook Hampendick) Fairbanks, Alaska!
Posts: 15,287
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
I'm a lazy propane griller, but when I used to use the kettle grill, I started it with old brown paper grocery bags and kindling. I, too, find the taste of lighter fluid offensive on my steak.
Old 05-19-06, 08:22 AM
  #10  
DVD Talk Legend
 
nevermind's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Illinoyze
Posts: 10,514
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Kittydreamer
I use a propane grill, not out of laziness but because I have small children and I grill almost daily.
Grilled children
Old 05-19-06, 09:35 AM
  #11  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Gamecock Country
Posts: 395
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by OldDude
What he said. The electric starter works well, and leaves no taste.
Hint: Respect the maximum "on" time the directions say. They can burn up if plugged in too long.
I would think that sometimes the grill is too far from an outlet to run an extension cord, like if you're camping. I use MatchLight. I've can't really tell a different taste than the chimney overall, and it does cut down on the time. I know w/ the chimney, I've tasted burned newspaper before. I must have done something wrong. I now dump my burned paper into a different receptacle.
Old 05-19-06, 09:43 AM
  #12  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Des Plaines, IL
Posts: 6,730
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Regarding lighter fluid and matchlight, if you can taste it in your food, you put the food on the grill way too early. The coals should be white embers with an orange underglow before you throw them on.

Our house has a natural gas line to our grill which I love and is so convenient, but I still prefer the taste of charcoal cooked food so we have a charcoal grill left over from the apartment life set next to our gas grill. Whenever I'm cooking for just me and my wife I use the gas, but when there's company over it's charcoal time.
Old 05-19-06, 09:44 AM
  #13  
Video Game Talk Reviewer
 
Canis Firebrand's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Formerly known as "Vryce"/Detroit, Michigan
Posts: 13,857
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Chimney is how I start the coals for my grill.
Old 05-19-06, 09:45 AM
  #14  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Minor Threat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Posts: 13,740
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Old 05-19-06, 10:09 AM
  #15  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Aostin, TX, USA
Posts: 19,876
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by rabbit77
Regarding lighter fluid and matchlight, if you can taste it in your food, you put the food on the grill way too early.
Totally agree. A good charcoal setup is my zen garden. You have bad results when you are impatient.

Personally, I taste propane more than I do my charcoal with lighter fluid.


That being said, I wouldn't mind propane because cooking for two with charcoal is kind of a pain in the ass. But I do it. Usually I'll just do a little extra. Leftover grilled pork steaks turned into fajitas two days later is tons better than another night of "hamburger helper"...
Old 05-19-06, 10:27 AM
  #16  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Posts: 856
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Chimney. Works great.
Old 05-19-06, 11:10 AM
  #17  
DVD Talk Godfather
 
The Bus's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: New York
Posts: 54,880
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by rabbit77
Our house has a natural gas line to our grill which I love and is so convenient
Hmm. Your ideas are intriguing to me and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.
Old 05-19-06, 11:21 AM
  #18  
DVD Talk Legend
 
nevermind's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Illinoyze
Posts: 10,514
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by rabbit77
Our house has a natural gas line to our grill which I love and is so convenient.
I REALLY want to do this at our new house being built, but they don't offer it as an option .
Old 05-19-06, 11:32 AM
  #19  
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 177
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I use propane to light the charcoal.

Seriously. Weber.
Old 05-19-06, 11:36 AM
  #20  
DVD Talk Reviewer
 
Pointyskull's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Formerly known as "12thmonkey"/Frankfort, IL
Posts: 7,561
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
How to get it started:

Weber grill - charcoal with lighter fluid
Me - two beers while I watch the pretty flames
Old 05-19-06, 02:59 PM
  #21  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Gamecock Country
Posts: 395
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by 12thmonkey
How to get it started:

Weber grill - charcoal with lighter fluid
Me - two beers while I watch the pretty flames
Funny. People always complain that charcoal takes so long to get going. I just tell them that means I can drink another beer while I wait. There are worst things to do...and complain about. Chimneys do take quite a while longer, as compared to MatchLight and also lighter fluid, but you just start earlier. It's kinda simple. I do end up grilling solo most of the time, though, because the wife usually cooks up a pasta dish for herself, so I use my Smokey Joe over the bigger kettle Weber most of the time.
Old 05-19-06, 06:35 PM
  #22  
DVD Talk Platinum Edition
 
Join Date: Aug 1999
Location: Sub-basement 3b
Posts: 3,426
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Chimney starter...never fails.

Lighter fluid? Only for the wannabes
Old 05-19-06, 11:30 PM
  #23  
DVD Talk Gold Edition
 
mike45's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Earth
Posts: 2,309
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Chimney and patience.

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.