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Matchlight charcoal

HotMelly Apr 26, 2011 02:08 PM

I love cooking with charcoal...When I go to Publix here in Florida I always choose Kingsford... I also see that Kingsford has a "matchlight"... Is Matchlight the same as the regular Kingsford that has been soaked in charcoal lighter fluid??? (And charging much more)?

  1. k
    Kelli2006 Apr 28, 2011 12:58 AM

    The only use I know of for Matchlight charcoal is on a picnic at a park or such when you don't want to take a big bag of charcoal and lighter with you and carry the remainder home. You buy a small bag and lay it in the grill and light the entire contents. 30 minutes later, after the light fluid has burned off and the coals are hot, you can cook.

    I use Royal Oak and a chimney at home.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Kelli2006
      hill food Apr 28, 2011 02:35 AM

      for the picnic you can always re-fill a vial of Ernest Lazlo Scalp Treatment with lighter fluid (paint thinner or kerosene has less residual odor IMHO), cuts the burn-off time. (oh wait that's a method a friend's mother used for open containers of scotch on long road trips - she wasn't driving) but same principle.

      I like to store my charcoal and hardwood bits in one of those tight fitting galvanized bucket and lid mini-trashcan things where the handle locks the lid in place (about 18 inches. what 47 cm tall?). transports well and I can leave it outside.

    2. hill food Apr 27, 2011 09:01 PM

      I'll use a little accelerant, but I let that smell burn off before I put the food on. never burns off with the matchlight. you can make your own chimney starter out of a large metal (coffee) can and a few basic tools.

      1. HillJ Apr 27, 2011 03:54 PM

        We've got the gas, charcoal hibatchi and green egg running all summer. Each with their own function and place in our outdoor food enjoyment. Much like the spice rub we love or the wood plank, how we cook outside is a function of taste preference and recipe. I don't have a preference as long as it tastes really good.

        1. Uncle Bob Apr 27, 2011 02:15 PM

          The only thing worse than Matchlight would be starting your charcoal with diesel fuel.......
          The only thing worse than Kingsford is....................I can't think of one.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Uncle Bob
            srsone Apr 27, 2011 03:43 PM

            and i know what diesel fuel tastes like........(dont ask)

          2. srsone Apr 27, 2011 01:28 PM

            i remember my dad trying it a few times back when i was a kid..i think around when it first came out..
            but we didnt use lighter fluid..we didnt like the taste of the lighter fluid on the food..so we didnt use it much after that

            i remember my dad and grandfather pretty much only using an electric charcoal starter..

            2 Replies
            1. re: srsone
              hamboney Apr 28, 2011 08:09 PM

              My dad always used a cardboard egg carton full of briquettes with a good spritz of fuel ===== Homer J Simpson mushroom cloud.

              1. re: hamboney
                srsone Apr 29, 2011 09:21 AM


            2. Bada Bing Apr 27, 2011 05:45 AM

              I avoid chemical starters of any sort. I second the suggestion that you get a chimney starter. And especially if you're cooking for more than 2, go find a Home Depot or Ace Hardware that sells Weber equipment. The Weber chimney is a bit larger than most, and it's made of better metals (will not rust into uselessness after one season). It's not significantly more expensive, either.

              About charcoals, keep in mind that briquets have various amounts of non-combustible fillers (Kingsford is rather high in these) so you end up with more ash than when you cook with hardwood "lump" charcoal. The advantage is to briquets, however, if you want a slower and somewhat cooler burn, as in cooking whole chickens or brisket. I keep both briquets and lump around for various cooking tasks.

              1. h
                HotMelly Apr 26, 2011 02:15 PM

                Wow.Thanks Kunco.......Quick response...Thanks...I am in south Florida and have a wonderful outside bar...I spent many bucks to have a built-in gas grill but I still go back to my $89 Weber charcoal for the best food......My new boyfriend thinks I am nuts

                1 Reply
                1. re: HotMelly
                  Cheez62 Apr 27, 2011 08:49 PM

                  You are so not nuts! Besides the great flavor, your Weber is so much more controllable than many other grills. You can have hot, warm, or anywhere in between, and flare-up are quickly extinguished just by putting on a lid! I cooked dinner for seventeen last Sturday, and had three Weber kettles going at one time. Everything was great. Do as others have suggested here... avoid the matchlight and also any other lighter fluids, get a chimney for starting (Bada Bing is right, the Weber seems to be the best), try some different charcoals to see what you like. Kingsford is a good briquette, but because it has binders, etc. to form that briquette it does have "impurities" that some do not like. Lump is all natural, but often burns hotter and faster. That could be ok for you, you'll just have to try some. It's cooking, not rocket science (and with a chimney, no longer with rocket fuel, hehe), so try whatever you want! If you want any more help, ideas, etc., stop over at bbq-brethren.com... the guys there will answer any questions you might have. Tell 'em Cheez sent ya!

                2. k
                  Klunco Apr 26, 2011 02:11 PM

                  Yes. It is just charcoal soaked in lighter fluid.

                  If you like cooking with charcoal, I highly recommend picking up a chimney and cooking with hardwood charcoal. Better flavor, cheaper than "match light", and you don't have that lighter fluid smell. With a $10 chimney, it's just as easy as matchlight too.

                  16 Replies
                  1. re: Klunco
                    jdmfish Apr 26, 2011 02:31 PM

                    +1. Royal Oak is a very popular charcoal, and is found at Walmart for about $6, depending on your location. You can pick up a chimney starter at Walmart as well. Finally, you'll need something to light the chimney - I like the small Weber starter cubes. They're odorless, and don't smoke heavily like oil sprayed/dipped paper toils.

                    1. re: jdmfish
                      tommy Apr 27, 2011 05:09 AM

                      A few pieces of newspaper work perfectly fine to start a starter. Buying a starter to start a starter seems a bit over the top.

                      1. re: tommy
                        jdmfish Apr 27, 2011 01:08 PM

                        Like I mentioned, there is far less smoke by using the starter cubes. Furthermore, they Bryn hotter and lump is usually ready for use a good 5 minute before the newspaper method. Additionally, these starter cubes cost around $3 for 36 of them.

                        Guess I don't see how its "over the top". Burns hotter, quicker, odorless and smokeless.

                        1. re: jdmfish
                          tommy Apr 27, 2011 01:12 PM

                          Well you sure told me. Thanks.

                          1. re: tommy
                            jdmfish Apr 27, 2011 01:17 PM

                            Any time. :)

                            1. re: jdmfish
                              tommy Apr 27, 2011 01:39 PM


                    2. re: Klunco
                      dave_c Apr 26, 2011 02:32 PM

                      (+1) I agree the chimney starter is the way to go.

                      I like to use Kingsford.
                      What I do is use newspaper that has been wetted with a teaspoon or two of vegetable oil (Alton Brown tip) or newspaper and a handful of crap hardwood charcoal on the bottom topped with a full load of briquettes.

                      Light and come back in 15 minutes..

                      1. re: dave_c
                        j8715 Apr 26, 2011 03:46 PM

                        i don't even think the oil is really needed, chimney starters are just that easy. i can't believe i every messed around building lil piles of charcoal inside the grill.

                        1. re: j8715
                          jdmfish Apr 26, 2011 03:51 PM

                          Your right, it isn't necessary, however not all chimney starters have the same volume. Some are larger than others, and the oil soaked/sprayed paper towels, newspaper, etc. helps slow the burn so the the lump can ignite in larger chimney starters.

                          1. re: jdmfish
                            j8715 Apr 26, 2011 04:32 PM

                            ah i see. mine is fairly small since i am usually grilling for two.

                          2. re: j8715
                            Zeldog Apr 27, 2011 08:36 PM

                            I've found that drizzling a little oil on the newspaper helps a lot with chunk charcoal, but is not needed for briquettes, which are much easier to light. Anyway it's a penny or two worth of oil, so whatever type of charcoal you use, why not have some insurance.

                        2. re: Klunco
                          mucho gordo Apr 29, 2011 09:53 AM

                          Why do you use a chimney? Why not just spread the charcoal over the grill first, then light it? Isn't it easier (and safer) than trying to spread burning briquettes?

                          1. re: mucho gordo
                            j8715 Apr 29, 2011 10:28 AM

                            this is what i used to do and no, it is not easier. the coals never light evenly and you end up with some ashed over, some still black and you have to move them around.

                            the chimney you just light, walk about for 10 minutes or so, then pour it into the grill.

                            1. re: j8715
                              mucho gordo Apr 29, 2011 10:53 AM

                              Were you using Matchlight when you did it? When you pour it onto the grill does it spread evenly? I light both ends and the middle and, by the time the flames die down, all coals seem to be engulfed.

                              1. re: mucho gordo
                                j8715 Apr 29, 2011 01:05 PM

                                no, never used match light.

                                i haven't found it to be hard to pour them out of the chimney evenly.

                                so much less fiddlingy. just wad up a few pieces of newspaper under the thing, light and dump. i had thought they were just a gadget that didn't really do anything, but i wouldn't go back.

                                1. re: j8715
                                  hill food Apr 29, 2011 06:55 PM

                                  mg: IME with chimneys, you really don't have to do much more than lift the chimney off, let gravity do its work and only retrieve a few strays

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