Brushing the snow off the grill

As we sat at the kitchen table the other day, Hubby Bryan gazed out at the deck and asked with disdain, “How much bigger do you suppose that’s going to get?”

He was referring to the mound of snow atop our Weber gas grill. Bryan has already swept it clean several times this winter, but the snow just piles up again.

Some years, we’ve been able to grill throughout the winter, but this has not been one of those years. But with a warm-up on the horizon — can we believe the weatherman? — maybe it is time to ponder some mid-winter outdoor cookery.

I’m not sure who he is, but in a recent e-mail I received, celebrity chef and cookbook author Ted Reader offers up some tips and recipes to keep your grill fired up all winter long.

According to Reader, grilling in the winter requires only a few modifications:

Due to the colder temperatures outside, it’s essential that you preheat your grill five to 10 minutes longer than you would in the summer.

Although the garage may seem like an ideal location to grill; away from the winter elements, your grill should be placed at least 10 feet away from the house to avoid the risk of possible explosions or fires.

Be sure to inspect all gas lines, burners, the interior of the lid and remove any debris that may have accumulated.

Thoroughly clean the grill before and after use, making sure there is no oil or fat built up on the inside.

The winter months bring longer evenings, meaning a lot of times it will be dark when cooking dinner. Try to set up your grill near a light source.

It may be cold, but the same rule applies: Never leave your grill unattended.

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