BBQ Safety Tips and Favorite Rub Recipes – Chef Lia Soscia

The weather is getting warmer and it’s time to dust off those outdoor barbeques. If you aren’t a diehard griller who has used the outdoor gas grill all winter, chances are you need to do a few safety checks before firing it up. A few simple steps and your on your way to some great meals this season. Not doing these safety checks can cause a very dangerous situation one of which I lived many years ago.

It was a beautiful spring day and my husband went out on the deck to light the grill for the first time that season. We were young and anxious to use our gas grill in our new backyard. As this was one of our first gas grills, we didn’t really know about the dangers that lurk in grills unused for long lengths of time. As it was, some spiders decided to make a home under the cover and in the gas pipes. When the barbeque ignited, it literally blew up. It was very lucky for us that the fire department was only a block away. Things worked out all right and my husband ever determined to not give up on his grill decided to rebuild the grill with new parts and a coat of fresh paint.

Before we move on to some great rub and marinade recipes, you should follow the links below read about grill safety tips:
Gas grill safety courtesy of the Propane Education & Research Council

Charcoal grill safety from the Hearth, Patio and Barbeque Association

Grilled foods are so versatile. You can spice them up simply or go all out and put on the heat. Depending upon what you are grilling there is a perfect marinade or rub. Marinades are good for meats that aren’t very tender. Rubs are great for meats and fish that you cook quickly. There are many barbeque experts out there, especially in the Deep South where barbeque is the prevailing style of cooking year round. I am particularly fond of Bobby Flay and Steve Raichlen’s recipes as they use basic skills but powerful flavor combinations. Take a trip to the library and peruse their cookbooks and you will discover many new favorites. And, don’t forget those sides! Grilled meats and fish go great with summer’s produce bounty.

To get you started, here are a few of my favorite bbq recipes. Happy grilling!

Basic Barbeque Rub – good for any meat or fish

6 Tablespoons Paprika

2 Tablespoons Coarsely-ground Black Pepper

2 Tablespoons Kosher Salt (or Other Coarse Salt)

1-Tablespoon Chili Powder

2 Teaspoons Brown Sugar – (packed)

1 Pinch Cayenne Pepper – to taste

Mix the spices in a small bowl. Store the rub covered in a cool, dark pantry or freezer. Yields ¾ Cup

Poultry Rub

3/4 Cup Hungarian Paprika

1/4 Cup Freshly-ground Black Pepper

1/4 Cup Celery Salt

1/4 Cup Sugar

2 Tablespoons Onion Powder

2 Tablespoons Dry Mustard

2 Teaspoons Cayenne

2 Tablespoons Dried Grated Lemon Zest (from 3 to 4 Lemons)

Mix ingredients in a bowl. Store in a tightly sealed jar in a cool dark place. Yield about 1 Cup

Beef Teriyaki Marinade

1 1/2 Pounds Sirloin Steak

1/2 Cup Soy Sauce

1/2 Cup Dry White Wine

1 Clove Garlic, minced

1 Teaspoon Ginger

1 Tablespoon Cornstarch

          2 Tablespoons Sugar (or Splenda)

Place beef steaks in a shallow dish.

Combine soy sauce, wine, garlic, and ginger. Pour over meat, cover and refrigerate. Marinate 2 hours.

Broil or barbeque beef 2 minutes on each side (or until desired doneness). Pour marinade into saucepan. Add cornstarch and cook over medium eat, until sauce thickens. Remove from heat, stir in Equal. Serve sauce over meat. Chef’s Note: It is very important to boil the marinade after marinating meat to assure that there is no bacteria alive in the sauce.


Thai BBQ Sauce – great with shrimp and chicken

 3 Tablespoons Soy Sauce

2 Tablespoons Fish Sauce

3 Tbsp. Lime Juice

2 Tsp. Honey

1 Tsp. Fresh Ginger, minced

3 Each Thai or Serrano Chiles, minced

2 Tbsp. Green Onion, minced

1 Tbsp. Cilantro, chopped

4 Cloves Garlic, minced

Add all ingredients to a blender or a food processor with a metal blade. Pulse the ingredients together to mix well. Marinate the food of your choice for at least an hour. Then throw that stuff on the grill!

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