When I think of cooking, my mind naturally drifts to fire. To my wife’s delight, I would gladly take on all of the cooking duties that arose from an everyday dinner to the most elegant of holiday fare. Even the characters in the novels I write need a meal now and then to stave off the clutches of virtual page starvation.
You’ve heard the saying, The more things change; the more they stay the same. This indeed rings true, although we miss the notion that the more things change; the more they revert to yesteryear–case in point, cooking fuel.
Through the years, the human race has used everything from animal waste and wood to flammable fluid to cook food. This use of less than wholesome means to heat what we eat was the norm for some time. Eventually, electric coils were employed into the construction of modern day oven and cook tops, bringing the ease and a clean way to accomplish our much needed cooking duties inside safely.
So, after these kitchen innovations, why would we grab a bag of charcoal and step back outside to cook meat the primitive way, especially when it took us so long to make it indoors without burning the dwelling down by fire?
Why? I’ll tell you why. One word – – flavor. Cook a meal on the stove top of a modern oven. You will find yourself dealing with anything from metal coils to flat European burners, glass cooking surfaces to the exotic ceramic. The next meal you endeavor to prepare, start with walking outside and loading the grill with charcoal or if plain wood is your thing fill the grill with dry hickory. Once, whichever you have chosen is ashed over, slap a slab of cow on the searing hot surface. When done to your liking, attack, and you will see why, sometimes, retro, is the only way to go.