Starting the fire. How many of you pile a bunch of charcoal briquettes,
pour on the lighter fluid and toss the match? Quite a few, I would imagine.
Did you know there was an alternative to lighter fluid? Many folks believe
they can taste the petroleum byproducts in the meat. Perhaps. But I would
imagine this is due to their either having extremely powerful taste buds or
they simply did not let the fire burn sufficiently to expel the fumes. At
any rate, if you use lighter fluid, wait at least 45 minutes before grilling.
After this time, there is little chance that any petroleum byproducts are
still around AND you will then have a sufficiently constant temperature to
ALTERNATIVES? Yes, there are several. One of the favorites is
the electric starter. Works great, but somewhat awkward. Some have bent
elements which aid in the clumsy area. Usually the biggest hassle is
getting the electricity there and later put away. Another alternative is a
FIRE CHIMNEY. This is easy, fast and eliminates lighter fluid. The chimney
is a round cylinder where you can place wadded up newspaper in the bottom
and then the charcoal on top. Simply light the newspaper (you could even
use this newsletter - if it were in print) and let it go. In about 20
minutes, perhaps less, you will have a nice set of coals to work with. It
uses the draft from the bottom to fan the heat up the chimney. You can
either use a large coffee can with both ends removed or buy one of these
heavy duty chimneys with a handle which will last for many years. Good luck
and have fun!