Quick Tips: Grilling #TheGrillingBruhz

I’ve been around the grill all of my life and until college I hated it. I remember summers when my dad would by massive amounts food and charcoal and we’d be out in the blazing sun all day preparing a grilled feast. My Dad, although having tons of Mc  Donald’s fry cook experience (See Fryon? My Cooking Journey) isn’t the best griller. He simply overcooks things, to the point of lifelessness.

It was until I pledged Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, to which my father is also a member, that I learned how to grill. I learned the most from two of the older members, Applewhite and C-Murder. Both guys are experts on the grill. Every homecoming they would break out their grilles/smokers and cook restaurant quality BBQ. They even smoked a whole hog some years. The entire campus would come to our area to get a plate. When I was a new pledge it was my duty to maintain the grill. That meant keep the fire going and cook the hot dogs, hamburgers, and sausages. I got so into it that when they retired their homecoming grills, I took over the grilling duties and trained up some of the younger members. It was during that time I really learn to appreciate the grill and learned these quick tips that  can help you make great grilled food. Here they are:

  1. Burn the coals first- If you’re using a coal grill you have to burn the coals white before you start cooking. Otherwise your food will taste like lighter fluid. You’ll start your first batch of coals in the grill to get it to temperature. After you’ve gotten those coal white and hot your ready to cook. If you need to heat additional coals to keep the fire hot, you achieve this by burning off the coals in a metal trash can (unused of course) or metal barrel. Then scoop the fresh hot coals into the grill when they turn white. If you don’t have either of those you can use a disposable aluminum pan. If  you go the cheap route be sure to sufficiently wet the ground you’re working on first. Otherwise you’ll start a fire. You might want to do that regardless.
  2. Have a hot and cool side- For Gas and coal grills you always want to have a hot side and a cool side. This helps if your fire kicks up too hot. It gives you a place to put your food until the flame calms. This also helps if you have sufficiently charred your food but it has not reach the proper internal temperature. You can continue cooking it on lower heat until it reaches proper temperature. You achieve the hot and cool side with a coal grill  by piling more coals on one side than the other. After you’ve burned your coals off, pile the fresh hot coals together for the hot side. As they cool move them over and that starts your cool side. For gas just turn half of the burners down or off.
  3. Char first, then bake- A grill is basically a glorified oven. To ensure that you don’t over cook your food, give it a nice char to lock in the flavor. Then move it to the cool side or top rack and shut the lid to cook it to temperature.
  4. Keep the heat in- Newcomers to the grill have the tendency to continuously open the lid to check the meats. That’s not the best practice because you let the heat and all of that good smoke out. Smoke = Flavor!
  5. Low and slow- Grilling is a game of patience. Work with lower heat and infuse as much smokey charred flavor as you can.
  6.   If you’re not serving immediately, cook it a little under– If you’re prepping for a cookout and anticipate food sitting in the oven or on a Sterno, cook it slightly under. Just enough so that by the time it’s ready to serve it will be at the desired internal temperature. If you’re serving immediately cook it to temperature.
  7. Buy a thermometer- Look, lets not play the guessing game. Buy a thermometer so you’ll know exactly when your meat is done to your liking. If you don’t have a thermometer you’ll have to work with what I like to call the “Jesus piece.” That’s the thickest pieces of meat you’re cooking. You’ll have to sacrifice it (get it? lol) by cutting it open to check for doness. Based on that, you get a relative gauge on the rest of the meat you’re cooking.

Follow these steps and you’re on your way to successful grilling. Stay Tuned for #TheGrillingBruhz part 2. On that Post we’ll talk all about getting the best flavor!

Share your pics of your grilled creations and of you grilling with a Husky Boys T on IG and Facebook with the hashtag #HuskyBoysGrill



Fryon? (My cooking Journey)

I guess I come from a family cooks. On my dad’s side, my grandfather and his brother were in the restaurant business for 20 plus years. My grandpa Randy did some cooking/serving and his brother Dopey was the maitre d’ at the Halfway House (Petersburg, VA) for a number of years until he opened his own restaurant in Richmond, VA. I also have some other close family friends on that side who own a soul food restaurant(The Family Secrets) in RVA. Just recently, I found out (about a month ago) my dad was the lead fry cook a Mc Donald’s in high school. Apparently he held the record for cooking the most food in an hour, major feat (sarcasm lol). It was at my great uncle’s restaurant that my interest in food began. There I had my first Turkey Sandwich with bacon. I was about 10 years old and I never had a Turkey club sandwich before. I never knew the food rules allowed for such a winning match up. I think that was the aw inspiring moment that changed my taste pallet for life.

Then  around the 6th grade I realized that I look at life and food from a different perspective. However, growing up in a traditional black household doesn’t give you much room for uniqueness, at least not without a bit of joking. I was with my cousins and sibling in the kitchen making Turkey sandwiches , which I fashioned after my uncle Dopey’s, and I ask “Why do we call bacon bacon if we always fry it?: We should call it Fryon.” Mass hysteria and laughter broke out. But it was a serious question to me, that led me to later on try to make bacon in the oven. To which I was rebuked “Boy you don’t put bacon in the over.” “But Why?” I asked. And with no real justification my kitchen privileges were revoked and I was no longer allowed to make my box brownies and turkey sandwiches.

(Check out my Tips for making crispy bacon in the oven)

It was then I realized that my family generally ate the same things all the time (this is starting to sound like the backdrop of Disney’s Ratatouille). Fired Chicken, meat loaf, turkey, pot roast and the regular sides we see on every African American dinner table were the daily norm in my house. I was growing tired of the same old same old. So while no one was home I started cooking random things. Potatoes, over easy eggs, and fried hot dogs is usually what I ended up with. But occasionally I’d sneak in my parent cabinet a toss a splash or two of some red wine in there. Voila, horrible fails but that’s how I got started. Then one day my aunt came over to get her hair done and turned to this channel I’d never heard of “The Food Network.” So, that became my favorite channel. As, I watched the food network I learned more and  began to cook more and tried new things and my family would say things like “You eat like white people.”

College is really when my skills exploded. Why? Because I was hungry. When you’re hungry you figure things out very quickly. I continued to learn new dishes and techniques from the food network and applied them to my everyday food journey in my dorm room. I stay in the apartment style complex so I had a full kitchen to work with. I would take whatever  we had in the fridge and cabinets and create amazing dorm room dishes. Honestly, I think the show chopped was based on my college experiences. My favorite creation was the ramen spaghetti made from Ramen Noodles, frozen hamburger patties, left over Prego sauce and whatever aromatics I had in the fridge. Then after I pledge, Omega Psi Phi Fraternity INC., and got introduced to the power of grill  I was unstoppable.  (see “The Grilling Bruhz” for my grilling journey and grilling tips).

Here I am today. I’m a regular guy who likes to cook and loves to eat. I hope through these blogs you get to see how anyone can cook and though not every dish is going to be perfect, it’s the journey that makes the meal enjoyable( also the seasonings, you have to season lol. (See our Quick Tips on Seasoning Here).


What is a Husky Boy?

In the beginning

In ancient times (like before the 80’s) the word “Husky” was more a derogatory term used to describe guys who were more hearty in size than others. You’d walk through department store and find a small select section of poorly tailored clothes with little choices labeled with the term husky. The word would get tossed around in school cafeterias and even during family gathering when aunty would say “Boy you’re getting Husky.”  Over time, as people like Heavy D, Biggie Small, and even Rick Ross, hit the scene the bigger guy has gotten much overdue appreciation.

“I should put that on a T-shirt!”

So, I know all of this information from derived knowledge. I didn’t start my journey as a “Husky Boy,” I was the total opposite growing up. As a matter of fact they put a “Lil” in from of my name until I was 25. Then all of a sudden, as a result of working out and eating overseas, I muscled up and low and behold a “Husky Boy” was born. I found myself having issues finding clothes because my thighs were too thick or my arms were too big. I found myself taking pictures and looking like I just worked out and just ate at the same time. One picture in particular I put on Instagram with the caption “Husky boy Ministries.” The next day my gym partner and I joked for about 30 minutes about funny related captions, my favorite being “Husky Boys need love too.” Then I said “I should put that on a shirt.” That started the initial thought process into Husky Boys. Some months later my sister said you should pair Husky boys with a cooking blog since you’re always taking pictures of your food. And just like that Husky Boys was born. (See the “My cooking Journey” for how I got started in the kitchen).

So what is a Husky Boy?

What is a husky Boy you ask? After starting the @HuskyBoysIntl food blog on IG, I’d define Husky boys Intl. as a community for guys who like to cook , love to eat and the people who love them! It’s a movement for the plus size guys and guys of any size who appreciate the food culture. It’s also community for the people who love them and the delectable dishes they create. If you love the culture of cooking and practice of eating, then you’re pretty much a Husky Boy. The Husky Boy is the bigger man out here (points to stomach) but also in here (points to heart and laughs).

So join the movement and share with us pictures of your food creations and you wearing Husky Boy fan apparel with the hashtag #HuskyBoysIntl #stayHusky

The picture that started it all:

husky boys