Food for Thought: Winter grilling tips

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If you are grilling outside this winter, be sure to place your grill on a firm level surface. [Photo by Obersachse (Own work)

TIP OF THE WEEK

While some have winterized their grills — removing the gas tank, coating the burners in cooking oil, covering the grill itself — there are still a few brave souls out there who don't let the colder temperatures outside deter them from grilling their favorite foods.

If you are wanting to do some grilling this winter or need a refresher, here are a few tips for grilling out in the cold, according to FamilyHandyMan.com:

1. Do a little cleaning: Give everything a thorough cleaning, including all the hidden spots that don't often see the light of day.

2. Check your fuel: Fuel such as propane doesn't burn so efficiently in cold temperatures, and food also takes longer to cook, so be prepared to use more fuel than you do when the temperature is higher. You'll need more charcoal if you prefer solid fuel, so again, keep enough spare charcoal in a cool and dry place, ready for use when you need it.

3. Safety first: Place your grill on a firm level surface — a wooden deck is not the best choice for obvious reasons! Keep your spare fuel away from the lit grill. Winter clothing like scarves can trail into the flames, so be sure you're safely dressed when grilling.

4. No-slip zone: Snow will need to be removed from the area. Darkness also increases the risk of trip and slip hazards. Remove extension cords and other possible tripping hazards such as garden statues and outdoor furniture that could be partially covered with snow.

5. Wear grilling gloves: Purposely designed grilling gloves are made to withstand extremely high temperatures, and have long cuffs to protect your hands and wrists against burns.

EASY RECIPE

Baked Fresh Trout

Serves: 2 to 4

• Ingredients

2 freshly caught whole trout

Coconut oil

1 onion, peeled and sliced into rounds

1 lemon, sliced into rounds

1/4 teaspoon dried dill

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

Freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons water

• Steps

The first step if you have freshly caught trout is to gut it. Don't fillet the trout. Leave the head and tail intact, removing only the guts.

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Coat the bottom of the pan with the coconut oil. Other oils can be used, but I prefer coconut.

Stuff the inside of the trout with the onion, lemon, dill and thyme and place into the pan. Take some melted coconut oil and lightly cover the top of the trout to help crisp the skin. Before putting in the oven, cover the outside of the trout in your desired amount of pepper.

Bake the fish for 10 minutes. Add the 2 tablespoons of water to the dish and continue to bake for another 8 to 10 minutes.

After this, you should have a delicious, flaky trout dinner.

- SouthernKitchen.com

DRINK

Water can affect your sleep

Although drinking water is a necessity of life, drinking water before bed can cause you to get up in the middle of the night to the use the restroom, which disrupts your sleep cycle. People don't need to avoid drinking water in the evenings, but health officials recommend limiting water intake to 12 ounces in the couple of hours before you go to bed.

FUN FACT

Meat consumption

India has the lowest meat consumption in the world. Per capita, Indians only consume 7 pounds of meat per person per year.