Table of Contents
With the return of the beautiful days, you think of grilling in your garden accompanied by your friends and your family. To aid you in this mission, your charcoal barbecue must be at the best of these abilities.
Choose quality charcoal
The choice of charcoal is an essential criterion in the success of your cooking with your charcoal barbecue. Indeed, it directly influences the cooking of your food. The charcoal chosen must be able to provide, thanks to its characteristics, great heat, as long as possible, to properly grill your meats and other foods.
To do this, your fuel must be as pure as possible, and have a carbon content of over 80%. So, you just have to look at the ingredients present on the bag, and choose one with the fewest materials, for a purified charcoal, and therefore light. In addition, for the sake of safety, your charcoal must comply with current standards. In normal use, the lumpwood charcoal placed in the bowl must be at most 3 cm below the edge of the latter. If a cooking grid is positioned low on your charcoal barbecue, the charcoal must be no more than 1cm from the grid.
Finally, the quantity of charcoal to be used will be determined according to the models of barbecues and will have to respect the quantities indicated on the instructions of the appliance.
Barbecue charcoal manufacturing process
To find a quality of charcoal that will make all the difference for your grills, we explain its manufacturing process to you. So, it will make sense for you afterwards to choose your charcoal carefully.
Often made from oak or beech, the technique is that it burns over 500 degrees Celsius in the complete absence of air (pyrolysis) to obtain charcoal. This process removes pyro ligneous acids from wood. That is, all moisture and vegetable or volatile matter are removed to leave only the carbon and some minerals. The purpose of this is to increase the calorific value of the coal. In all, the process takes about 20 days. We speak of a flame retardant process.
Even if the most common wood in France for making charcoal is oak or beech, you can find other types of wood on the market. It may be interesting to select some depending on how you want your barbecue food to taste. Apart from wood, a more noble material, you also have simple pieces of coal, which are extracted directly from coal mines, therefore directly from the earth. The transformation of wood into charcoal was done in the past thanks to millstones. Today, it takes place in ovens for industrial and modern production.
The best barbecue charcoal
Now that you know how the charcoal making process works, you will need to determine which charcoal is best for you. Quality charcoal is not easy to determine when you are a novice. But some elements can be taken into consideration in order to better identify it:
Avoid buying cheap charcoal containing a lot of volatile dust. These are produced in an express way which gives them a lower calorific value. That is to say, it will not be able to reach very high temperatures, above 300 degrees celcius.
- Prefer a denser charcoal which ensures the quality of the product.
- Check the calorific value of the coal. The higher it is the better!
The different types of charcoal
- lumpwood charcoal with beech wood, lump wood or others which gives a particular flavor to your food.
- Bamboo charcoal which helps regulate humidity.
- Olive charcoal for an incomparable flavor which gives a rather exceptional taste to your summer grills.
- Argentinian charcoal which guarantees excellent cooking due to its slow combustion behavior. It is therefore ideal for large barbecues that last a long time.
- Artisanal charcoal which is made in very small quantities, but which has the advantage of lasting longer than industrial charcoal.
Coconut charcoal which has a long burning time compared to other types of charcoal.
The charcoal barbecue requires dexterity and experience to make an efficient lighting. Here, no gas burners or an electrical system to light the fireplace. To help you, you can use fire lighters specially designed for barbecues, while making sure that they are well approved for safe use. You can also, on some of our models, benefit from turbo magic technology and its ingenious blower system to start a fire quickly and safely. Once the fire is lit in your cast iron or steel pan, it is recommended that you wait for the charcoal to form a layer of ash before you start placing your food on the grate. Thus, your cooking will be of better quality. Finally, we remind you that it is forbidden, in addition to being dangerous, to use alcohol, gasoline or any similar product to light a barbecue. For even more ease of lighting, you can opt for a chimney starter. This is the perfect process for obtaining embers without effort or risk taking. The charcoal barbecue ignition fireplace allows you to speed up the ignition of charcoal or briquettes. No need to stir the embers and watch it constantly for it to be perfect for your dishes. The ventilation valve allows air circulation and obtains an optimum temperature.
Start a charcoal barbecue
Childish for some, but laborious for others, here are a few tips to light your barbecue in no time:
Use a fire starter that has a burning time of around 10 minutes which allows the dry kindling or the crate to ignite quickly. Form a hole with the lumpwood charcoal in the bowl. Place very dry paper or wood in it. Light it all with a match or a lighter. Cover the hole with charcoal without smothering it so that it creates a draft.