When Weber puts their name on something it has to be quality. From the Grills to the Grill tools to the Cookbooks. When they say step-by-step they really mean step-by-step. They include photos on how to prepare the grill, prepare the meat and vegetables and proper ways to cook the meat and vegetables. I love this book as each recipe is written in a similar way to my blog posts. Straight forward, step-by-step photos with a little character thrown in for a little extra pizazz.
The Book is broken into perfect sections. If you can’t tell already, I love this book. The first section is Grilling Basics wherein Jamie introduces the different types of grills, the proper maintenance, the proper way to start them and the different methods of cooking on them. He then goes right into the meat sections starting with Red Meat, Pork, Poultry and Seafood. After the meat sections he goes on to Vegetables and Fruit. He covers the whole spectrum of grillable (totally a new word, not in spellcheck) food.
The Red Meat section contain 40 fabulous recipes. My first favorite includes lamb, which I don’t grill much. It is a take on a Greek gyro. It is Lamb Meatballs served on flat bread with a chopped salad and minted yogurt. I have never thought of making and grilling meatballs. The key to grilling meatballs is to skewer them. Seems self-explanatory now, but it took this book to bring me out of my comfort zone of brats, hot dogs, chicken and steak. My second favorite is also a new way of cooking on the grill for me. It is Barbecued Meat Loaf. Basically you form your meatloaf with a few panko bread crumbs to hold the meat together and you grill right on the grates. I guess a meatloaf is just a giant hamburger, but I never in a million years would have thought of that. Scattered throughout the chapter are also great grilling tips. Take for instance the method of making perfect crosshatch marks, frenching a rach of lamb or how to check a steak for doneness.
Another great section in the book is seafood. I find seafood on the grill to be the hardest task ever. I am just not experienced enough to be able to cook the whole spectrum of seafood. This book does a great job easing my nerves when it comes to grilling seafood. Jamie covers everything from scallops to whole striped bass. One of my favorite recipes in this section is Thai Squid. Yep, squid. They dedicate a whole page of pictures and captions to show you how to prepare the squid. Once prepared they take only 2-3 minutes to cook. What a perfect appetizer.
The last section of the book is dedicated to grilling resources. This section is money. Jamie lists recipes for tons of rubs, marinades and sauces. Further he lists everything you need to know about meat and vegetables. From cooking times, cuts of meat, how to freeze steaks and how meat is graded. The best part is that there are pictures showing you how to determine if each type of meat is done.
Overall this is probably my favorite cookbook ever. It takes the mystery out of grilling. It is a single resource that includes everything a griller would need to know. If you know a person that just picked up a grill or a long time griller that could use a few new tricks to spice up the summer barbecue, you should get them this book. I consider myself a pretty experienced griller and this book has taught me a few new tricks.