by Christina Wright
Maybe you're a student with a brand-new indoor electric grill perfectly sized for your small dorm kitchen, or maybe some friends love their electric grill so much they gave you one for your birthday. Whatever the case, now you can enjoy the ease and speed of indoor electric grilling. Whether you are a grilling expert or an experimenting beginner, you can use these tips with your new electric grill.
Never use metal utensils. Metal can scratch the surface of the grill plate, reducing the grill's ability to heat your food, and if your grill has a nonstick surface, the scratched-off flecks can get in your food the next time you use your electric grill. Always use wooden or silicone-coated forks or tongs to turn or remove foods from the grill.
Use thinner meats. Many electric grills have floating hinges to accommodate thicker foods, but thinner meats cook faster and more evenly. Thin meats you can try with your electric grill include flank steak, pounded chicken breasts and fish fillets, like tilapia or trout.
Use thin or small vegetables. Just as thinner meats cook better on an electric grill, the same principle applies to vegetables. Small, thin or flat vegetables cook faster and more evenly than thicker cuts; try grilling zucchini, asparagus, tomato, mushrooms or green beans.
Watch the clock to avoid overcooking. If you have a contact grill, an electric grill with both top and bottom grill plates, remember that your grilling times will be approximately half of what they would be with an open grill since the food is being cooked on both sides simultaneously.
Season your food before grilling. Electric grills don't give your food a smoky flavor like charcoal grills do, so you'll need to season your meats and vegetables before cooking them. A simple dusting of salt and pepper will do, but try marinades or dry rubs for more flavor. Marinade your meats at least 20 minutes before grilling and keep refrigerated until you're ready to grill and eat them. You can buy dry rubs or make your own; use smoky-tasting ingredients, such as smoked paprika or dried chipotle, to increase the flavor factor. You can toss your vegetables in balsamic vinegar or dust with seasoned salt or herb blends. Don't be afraid to experiment with seasonings: They make grilling a fun and unique experience every time.