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Bittman on Broiling...

Today's NYTimes food section leads off with Bittman's hints/tips on broiling...Some interesting ideas here...


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  1. Maybe not the right board, but I don't see how the broiler he described differs from a Foreman grill. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_F...

    3 Replies
    1. re: Brian S

      The difference is if you have an oven, you have a broiler, without having to go out an buy another appliance.

      1. re: Brian S

        My broiler is gas, therefore it does cook better than my George Foreman. And I would also venture to say better than the outside propane grill, since you can move the food up and down, and really get a char! I've always used the George Foreman alot this time of year, but when I read this article yesterday, I made a note to pull out my cast iron grilling skillet for future use.

        1. re: Brian S

          Are you referring to his mom's contraption?

        2. Lots of common-sense tips that hadn't occured to me before (preheating oven before blasting the broiler fire, preheating a castiron pan, etc..) Bittman is definitely better versed in homecooking techniques and tips than travel writing!

          1. Bittman makes hardly a mention of the smoke that is sure to fill the kitchen -- which is what generally keeps me from using my oven broiler, especially for fish.

            1 Reply
            1. re: CindyJ

              I've become convinced that smoke is necessary for really good home cooking. Too little fat, too little heat. Plus, he mentions it in the video.

            2. Originally posted on Home Cooking Board, same topic (http://www.chowhound.com/topics/366155


              Since I purchased a range with built-in gas grill, I haven't used my broiler. It's been about 7 years now.

              For fish, if I'm not pan-frying or grilling, I prefer roasting over high heat. Same for steak that I start off on top of the stove and finish in the oven.

              I read Mark Bittman's piece and, like a lot of what he writes, take it with a grain of salt. His method has too many problems (the broiler cycling on and off, for one). Must have been a slow week for editorial ideas.

              1. Bittman is right. It's one of the unsung appliances. We cook great salmon and steak all the time with our broiler. The range hood fan helps with the smoke.

                1. Funny tha tBittman didn't mention the smoke factor. In his books he praises Braising instead of broiling to reduce smoke.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Sweatshirt Guy

                    For what purpose would braising replace broiling?

                    1. re: amkirkland

                      That IS odd. Although I do find a lot of his technical advice to be odd and, at times, actually wrong.

                  2. I find that the cycling problem is generally fixed by preheating the pan on the stove and just having the broiler on long enough to get pumping, but not to heat up the oven. This allows that intense direct heat, plus prevents the broiler from cycling cause the oven is still cooler. Or, you could always go with the wet towel around the thermostat method.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: amkirkland

                      I just don't think all of this fiddle-faddle is necessary when one can just start something off on top of the stove and then roast it in as hot an oven as one wants. Seems to me there's more control, less hassle.

                      1. re: FlavoursGal

                        the difference is the intensity of the infrared heat from the broiler. the ambient heat of even the hottest oven can't match that.