How to Adopt California Fish Grill Menu Methods

California Fish Grill Menu

California Fish Grill Menu: Millions of people around the world grill their food, sometimes out of necessity, often out of passion. Many see grilling as a way of getting back to their caveman roots, a test of skill, and a matter of pride. Still, there is so much more to grilling than throwing a few burgers on a fire. Only experience can make you a master, but this article will give you a great head-start.

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Select your type of grill. There are two options to choose from: gas or charcoal.

  • Gas grills are the most commonly used grill today. Many find them more convenient than charcoal as they start instantly and fuel purchases are needed less often. When selecting a gas grill, be aware of heat output (BTUs), and construction.
  • Charcoal grills are still popular, and preferred by many purists. Charcoal offers better heat control (which means more versatility), and many find that good charcoal gives food a better “grilled” flavor. Look for heat control, construction, and style. There are two main styles of non-portable charcoal grill: Kettle and traditional. Kettle grills are great for straightforward grilling and small smoking applications. More traditional, rectangular charcoal grills are more versatile when it comes to setting up different zones of heat and smoking of larger products, but also typically take up more space.
    • The grill needn’t be yours. Public park grills avoid mess, expense, and fire hazard. But they typically have a simple design without a charcoal grates straight air path and ash discharge. A simple but less efficient larger bed of burning charcoal or a small grate to stack the charcoal on (cleaning the ash from underneath first) can mimic this; an accessory blower can bring a little pile to a quick start and searing glow.

      California Fish Grill Menu

Consider heat output. Heat output is what defines a proper grill. You want a grill that can put enough heat out to quickly sear a piece of fillet mignon, or keep a low heat to thoroughly roast a piece of meat.

    • Heat output in gas grills: Since most grills allow for fine adjustment of gas flow, it’s best to get the highest output you can afford. This will allow you to put a quick sear on food that you don’t want to cook through (think of a really good cut of beef, a tuna steak, or scallops).
    • Heat output in charcoal grills: Heat control is achieved by charcoal amount, placement, air flow, and level. It’s best to find a grill that allows for adjustment of the height of the charcoal tray. Crank mechanisms are the best option, but hook and lever methods also work fine. Look for at least two adjustable vents, as well. Opening them for more oxygen makes for a hotter fire, closing them cools the fire somewhat, and also deprives flames of oxygen, helping to stop flare-ups.

Consider the size of grill you want. Will you be cooking “for an army” or just for a family of 2 or 4? It’s relatively easy to cook a small meal on a large grill, but the opposite is not true. Look for how much “cooking area” your prospective grill has. The average grill has around 600 square inches of cooking space, and will serve a small party fairly well. If you host big cookouts, shoot for 800 square inches or more, if you really only want to toss on a few burgers once in a while, the smallest you’ll find without going “hibachi” style is maybe 400 square inches.

California Fish Grill Menu

Consider the materials used to make the grill. In particular, look closely at the grill grates. Most grill grates are made from either cast iron, porcelain, or stainless steel.

  • Cast Iron is the best for conducting heat, but it requires care to keep it from rusting.
  • Porcelain coated metal (steel or cast-iron) grates do well at conducting heat, but must be cleaned with something other than steel (typically, a brass brush is used) to avoid damaging the porcelain and leaving the metal underneath vulnerable to rust.
  • Stainless steel grates are easy to clean, without the worries of cast-iron or porcelain, but can wear out faster than well-maintained cast iron or porcelain.

Pay attention to additional features. Do you want a rotisserie? A smoker box? An external burner? Infrared cooking?

  • Pay close attention to the number of burners a grill has. More burners equals more versatility.
  • Look for good wheels, preferably larger (not tiny casters), if you’re going to be moving your grill around at all.
  • Features found on gas grills: Most gas grills have a built-in thermometer, while charcoal grills do not. Thermometers are quite useful for smoking and roasting applications. They can, however, be purchased separately and installed if your grill does not come with one.
  • Features found on charcoal grills: Helpful features in the construction of charcoal grill include easy access to ashes, be it through a drawer or a dumping mechanism.

    California Fish Grill Menu

Determine your grill’s location. There should be a couple of feet of clearance between the hot box and anything flammable. Your grill should not be directly underneath low-hanging trees or a low roof, and it should not be against deck rails, as all of these things could potentially catch fire.

  • Place a fire extinguisher or hose near your grill in case of emergency. Keep flammable materials far from the fire and never leave your grill unattended.

Start your fire ahead of time. You don’t want to have to wait for the grill to heat up when everyone else is ready to eat and all the side dishes are prepared. Keep in mind that charcoal takes longer than gas to heat up. Shoot for 10 minutes of preheating with gas, 20 to 25 with charcoal.

Turn your grill on or light your charcoal. If you have a charcoal grill, there are several different ways you can start your fire. Know that when the coal is lightly ashed over and gray, you can begin cooking.

  • Ever popular lighter fluid works, but it is imperative that you let it all burn off before cooking, unless you like the taste of petroleum.
  • Electric starters are also available, which use a cal-rod style heating element placed under the coals. They work very well, but do require a source of electricity, and cords can present a trip/burn hazard if not carefully monitored.
  • Chimney starters use a metal cylinder with perforations to hold the charcoal on top, and a couple of sheets of newspaper on the bottom. They work quickly and are inexpensive. Light the newsprint and the heat flows upward, igniting the coals. Have a place to put the chimney after use, as it will be red-hot. Another benefit to chimney starters is that they can be used to prepare extra charcoal if you need to refresh your pile. Just be sure to do it on top of a very heat-resistant surface, such as a cinder block or the bottom of an upturned galvanized steel bucket.

Close the grill. Allow the bars to heat for a minute or so to be able to make nice grill marks on whatever you are grilling.

Using Your Grill

Brine or marinate your meats before cooking. This is optional but brining or marinating meat and then placing the meat on the grill will result in a whole lot of flavor.

  • Brining will especially make for more juicy pork, chicken, or turkey. A basic brine is about 1/8 cup of table salt to 1 US-quart (950 ml) of water. Make sure you have enough to cover the meat. Broth may be used instead of water (adjust for salt), a little sugar (honey, brown sugar, molasses) may be added if desired, seasonings (almost anything) can also be added for more flavorful meat.
  • If marinating, be sure your marinade does not have too much sugar, or else it will burn on the grill.

    California Fish Grill Menu

Add the food to the grill. Placement is key when grilling, particularly if you are feeding a large party. If you’re cooking for a lot of people, try to be deliberate in your placement of food, so that you can maximize the amount cooking all at once. That said, do not crowd the food together, as it needs some space both for better cooking and for you to be able to snatch it out or flip it.

Pay attention to hot spots. Some grills will have sections that get hotter than others. Keep that in mind when grilling, particularly if someone you are cooking for has a special preference regarding how rare he/she like his/her food. Once you’ve added the food, do not flip it or move it (unless you want to turn it slightly for cross-hatched grill marks) until you believe it’s halfway done.

  • If someone likes their burger more rare than the rest, put theirs on the side that’s cooler. If your grill is pretty evenly heated, just put the food on slightly later than the rest to make it rare.

    California Fish Grill Menu

Stop “flame-ups”. Flame-ups are caused by fatty foods dripping onto the fire. You can stop flame-ups by removing the meat from the grill once the oil has risen to the surface of the meat. Shake the meat of it’s grease then put it back on the grill at a lower heat.

Flip the food when it is halfway done. Try to limit flipping the food as much as possible. Frequent flipping can lead to uneven cooking, ugly food, and or losing a piece of food to the flames below.

Ensure that your food is cooked all the way through. Experienced grillers don’t need to check the food very often, but until you’re comfortable, a thermometer plunged into the center of the food is the best method to be sure (instant-read for small items, probe style if you’re grilling a large item such as a whole chicken or pork tenderloin). If you don’t have a thermometer you can cut into the food, but keep in mind that slicing, piercing, or breaking a piece of food in half will make it dry out very quickly, as all the juices will run out of it.

California Fish Grill Menu

    • Remove your food from the grill. Put the food on a plate, platter, or other vessel and cover it with heavy-duty aluminum foil (if you don’t have starving guests hovering already) for at least 5 minutes. Doing this allows juices to redistribute so that they do not run out as soon as the food is cut or bitten into.
    • In the case of large cuts, taking the food off the grill and covering when the thermometer registers 5 degrees (10 for an exceptionally large item) less than the recommended or desired doneness is a good idea, as resting it will allow “carryover cooking” to finish the job. The meat continues to cook after it is taken off the grill, as it is still incredibly hot. A large piece of meat cooked to exactly the right doneness temperature on the grill will invariably be overcooked by the time that it hits the table.

    California Fish Grill Menu

Serve your food immediately after the resting period is over. A successful meal will, of course, have side dishes and beverages that you prepared ahead of time or alongside the main course. Don’t forget the condiments.
Turn your grill off (if it is a gas grill). Do not forget to turn the propane off or else the tank will continue to leak propane.

Keep your grill area clean. Keeping your grill and grill area clean, dry, and uncluttered is not just aesthetically pleasing, but safer and cost-effective. Grills will deteriorate quickly if left wet and out in the rain, especially charcoal ones (because wet wood ash is caustic and will rust through the grill very quickly).

California Fish Grill Menu

More tips

  • Smoking food on the grill: Smoking food on the grill uses indirect heat to slowly cook a larger piece of meat, be it a slab of ribs or a turkey. To smoke, soak wood chips for half an hour, and then put them in a heavy-duty foil “boat”, right on top of the coals or burner. Replenish them often, and spritz them with water if they start to ignite. Rotate the meat every few hours to prevent uneven cooking. This process will take 6+ hours if done properly, but the meat will be delicious. Just be sure your fire is hot enough to get the inside of the grill to 200 degrees, or else you are risking food contamination.

    California Fish Grill Menu

  • Grilling pizzas: Pizza can be cooked right on the grill. The best method is to stretch the dough and place it right on the (well cleaned and lubricated) grill. Allow it to cook for a minute or so, then flip it (a pizza peel is very useful for this, but not crucial if you are fast with your hands). Quickly add toppings and close the grill. Check often to ensure that the bottom is not burning. Remove from heat when the toppings are heated through, and the dough is golden brown. Use indirect heat (i.e. just one burner or charcoal on one side, pizza on the other) to avoid burning the bottom of the top is not fully cooked. Alternately, putting the pizza on a non-insulated pizza pan or cookie sheet, topping it, throwing it on the grill, and closing the grill will yield great results, though without as much charcoal grill flavor (if you have a charcoal grill.)

  • Specialty Grilling

  • There are 2 different types of charcoal, briquettes and chunk. Briquettes are densely packed and formed from very small bits of wood, like sawdust, whereas chunk is naturally created from actual chunks of wood that have had almost everything but the carbon burned out of them. Both have their advantages. Briquettes last longer (so they’re probably the best choice for a large cookout), whereas chunks burn hotter (faster grilling, better searing). In the end, it’s a matter of choice, but it is recommended that, if you are going to use briquettes, use all-natural ones, as they have better flavor and add fewer chemicals to your food.

    California Fish Grill Menu

  • Gas Grilling Tips:

  • Use Lava Rocks to distribute heat. Since heat largely goes straight up, the heat distribution on a gas grill is naturally uneven (because the gas burner only partially covers the bottom of the grill). A layer of lava rocks will absorb the heat and redistribute it more evenly to the cooking surface.

  • Charcoal Grilling Tips:

  • Buy a second propane tank to avoid the headaches of accidentally running out of gas, forgetting to refill, or forgetting to shut off the grill. It is a small investment that is well worth the added expense.

  • Making breakfast on the grill: Slap a good quality, thick metal griddle on top of your grill, and you have a perfect place to cook breakfast. Bacon, eggs, sausage, pancakes, French toast… All are easily able to cook on the grill, with a decent griddle. Do not leave a griddle that has a nonstick Teflon coating on the grill without food for a long period of time, though, as Teflon can release toxic gases if it reaches temperatures in excess of 600 degrees F (315.5 degrees Celsius.)

Things You’ll Need

Grill spatula

Long, spring-loaded tongs

Wire grill brush

Nonstick cooking spray

Heatproof gloves

Instant-read thermometer

Probe-style thermometer

Fire Extinguisher and/or Hose

Spritzer Bottle

California Fish Grill Menu


  • Grilling involves flames and high heat. Keep all accelerants and flammable materials far from your grill, including lighters and lighter fluid. It is wise to keep a hose and/or fire extinguisher nearby, as well.

  • Children should be kept far from the grill when at play, warned about it, and monitored closely. If a child is using the grill (for instance, to toast marshmallows), they should be very closely supervised by an adult.

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