I am getting lots of questions about cooking using infra red burners, especially on the Turbo RQT:
'What you have to remember is that this is a completely different way of cooking than with a conventional burner, whether they are stainless steel, tubular or the old fashioned cast iron ones.'
Let me try and explain the differences between the two:
'Firstly, the cast iron burner uses a flame to heat the plate or flame tamer and grill, this heats the air and the moisture in the air then moves to heat the flame tamer then finally the grill so effectively you have a ‘flame’ heating, cooking and sometimes ‘burning’ your food. That’s why it seems quicker to cook your food using a conventional gas BBQ burner.
Secondly, an infra red burner uses a different part of the heat spectrum, similar to the sun it actually treats the air and moisture in the air as invisible, cutting through it, losing virtually no heat until it hits what it is aimed at! The ends of the burners have more heat coming out of them as they act like a tunnel; use this end to cook food in the more conventional way as you would a normal burner.
Now, in saying this they are very easy to cook on and the new Turbo RQT has ‘quartz’ domes so a flame tamer is unnecessary.
You do have to have the burners on for about 5 to 10 minutes in order to get the metal grill nice and hot, this will make the ‘striping’ easier!
I cooked a nice piece of scotch fillet at my last BBQ Mastery Cooking Class; it was about an inch thick and as fresh as they come. I heated up the grills, brushed it with Extra Virgin Olive Oil and placed it on the grill, then lifted it after about a minute to make sure it wouldn’t stick. It cooked for exactly 6 minutes and then I turned it over and cooked it for about 4 minutes on the other side. Took it off and rested for 4 minutes and cut it into pieces to try. It was beautiful about medium to rare……
What I am saying is be patient with the Infra red burners. If you think your food is ready it probably isn’t and if you don’t think it’s ready it probably is! Try a sample of food and then you will get used to the cooking times.
Infra red ‘sears’ the food just like a plate does so you can actually place it directly on the grill without searing or ‘sealing it first on the plate. It should be less messy depending on your cooking and you should have fewer flare-ups so give it a go!!!
These are just a few of my tips, everyone Barbeques differently, so if yours works you may want to stick to it but you do have the option of trying my way for a change.'
Author / BBQ Chef