Just Grillin'

THE DISH

May 22, 2002|By Liz Atwood | Liz Atwood,SUN STAFF

With Memorial Day almost here, it's time to dust off the patio furniture and fire up the grill. While it's true that outdoor cooking has become a year-round phenomenon, Memorial Day ranks second only to July 4 for outdoor grilling.

According to the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association, 85 percent of American families own grills. A survey by the industry group found that 70 percent of grill owners have gas models, and that many families have more than one grill. The survey also found that men are more likely than women to be the one tending the flames, but women are the ones more apt to decide what foods are grilled.

If you're in the market for a new grill, the association suggests that you consider your needs before making a purchase. Factors to consider are portability, convenience, the kinds of foods you'll be cooking, the number of people you will be cooking for, whether you'll be cooking in a spacious yard or a small deck, and, of course, the price, which can vary from as little as $20 for a charcoal model to more than $10,000 for a top-of-the-line gas grill. For advice on how to select the grill that is right for you and for links to manufacturers, visit www.hpba.org.

For the gang

Char-Broil offers several new grill models this year, including the Big Easy line, which is a snap to assemble and designed to feed a crowd.

The Big Easy is a propane-gas grill with a stainless-steel smoke tent, porcelain cooking grates, a removable porcelain cast-iron griddle and a porcelain cast-iron deep dish for stir-frying or deep-frying. Suggested retail price of grills in this line range from $199 to $399.

For information about these and other Char-Broil grills, call 800-241-7548 or visit www.charbroil.com.

Waiting to sizzle

For portable grilling, Char-Broil presents the Thermos Grill2Go, a lightweight grill designed for camping, fishing or tailgating. About the size of an ice cooler, it features a Teflon cooking surface with grate, side shelves, tool storage, and legs that can be unfolded for full-size grilling or folded for tailgating. Suggested price is $149.99. For information, call 800-241-7548 or visit www.charbroil.com.

Going for the gobbler

If you're tired of grilling steaks and burgers, you might want to try turkey. Butterball, which has dispensed advice on preparing Thanksgiving turkeys for years, is now offering tips on how to grill the bird. You can visit www.butterball.com and sign up for mailers with tips on turkey preparation tips and grilling recipes.

Accent on accessories

Of course, no outdoor barbecue would be complete without some fun accessories like colorful place mats, glasses, napkins and plates to decorate your table. This season, Kmart is introducing its Some Like it Hot merchandise that boasts tropical and Hawaiian themes. Prices range from 99 cents to $4.99. You can find them at local Kmart stores and at www.bluelight.com.

Events:

Linganore Winecellars will hold its annual Swingin' Blues Wine Festival from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the winery-vineyard, 13601 Glissans Mill Road, Mount Airy. $8 adult admission includes tour, free wineglass and tasting. Admission for children is free with an adult. For information: 800-514-8735.

Sample California zinfandels from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. tomorrow at Bin 604, 604 S. Exeter St. $25 in advance and $35 at the door. For information: 410-576-0444.

This week at A Cook's Table, 717 Light St.: Learn the secrets of spring and summer desserts with pastry chef Diane Bukatman, 7 tonight, $45; learn how to cook with wine, 7 p.m. Friday, $30; and learn to make coleslaw from 10:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. Saturday, $25. For information: 410-539-8600 or for a complete listing of classes log on to www.acookstable.com.

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