I am one of the more inept human beings on this planet of ours. I can't tie my own shoes. I've never driven on a highway. Sometimes I still call my mom to ask how long things should go in the microwave for. I've had a painting leaning against the wall in my apartment for a year because I don't know how to hang it. I only recently learned how to make scrambled eggs. The list goes on.
But one thing I've figured out how to do because it's way easier than everything else I listed is grilling.
For years, I always assumed grilling would just be another bullet point on the list of things I couldn't do. It seemed way too advanced for someone like me. There's also this gatekeeping community that exists with grilling culture. They act like only the manliest of men can work the grill, and they're quick to shoot down anyone who they don't deem worthy enough of this high honor.
It's why Steak Twitter is notoriously known as one of the most ruthless places on the Internet. These steak hardos get word of one single picture of a steak floating around Twitter and they find it and attack it with a vigorous passion. They will try their hardest to break your spirit and your soul. But you know what? I won't let them.
Grilling is easy.
You just throw stuff on the grill and flip it. It's that simple. If I can do it, I promise that you can do it too.
I was surprised at how well I handled my first experience grilling a couple of months ago. We have some gas powered barbecues in our apartment's courtyard (not to brag) so we had some friends over for Memorial Day. I put burgers and hot dogs on the grill, and it went better than I thought. Now there was one pretty sizable fire that seemed like it could take us all out. I debated asking the group of bros next to me what I should do, but that seemed pathetic, so I just did nothing, hoped for the best, and it worked out.
Here is the official Tommy Smokes burger grilling method: Put salt, pepper, and olive oil on the raw burger. Then throw it on the grill at 400 degrees, about 6 minutes on each side. And slap a slice of cheese on that bitch with about a minute left.
The Tommy Smokes hot dogs method: Just put them on the grill and rotate them a little bit until you see some char marks and think "good enough." Boom. That easy.
So while I had mastered burgers and hot dogs, I was now ready for my next challenge: steaks. I knew this would be a harder task. But I was ready for it.
I went to the supermarket Fairway and the steak selection wasn't great. I ended up with a boneless sirloin, but it was ginormous and not that expensive. I watched a few instructional YouTube videos, texted Chef Donny and my dad for help, and I was ready to roll. All things considered, they turned out decent for a first timer who made toast for the first time in 2020.
Was it perfect? No. But for a first time, I was impressed with myself. And you know how I know it was decent? Steak Twitter wasn't even that mean to me. That's the true test of accomplishment. The main critiques were I needed a better cut of steak and to sear it so I had a better crust. So after a month's wait, I tried again last night.
This time I went to Trader Joe's and got ribeyes. They weren't that big and probably weren't the best cut, but they got the job done. Here's the Tommy Smokes steak grilling method: season them liberally an hour ahead of time with salt, pepper, and olive oil. Put it on the grill at like 400 for 4 minutes on each side. Rotate them once to get the grill marks. Take them off and wrap them in aluminum foil to trap the heat and juices. Wait 5 minutes. Put some butter on. Eat them.
And once again, I survived Steak Twitter. Their main complains were the paper plates (sorry I don't want to do dishes), people thinking I grilled the steaks on the foil (amateurs), and again the lack of sear. Well I'm going to be honest with you guys, I don't know what the fuck searing means. I've watched like 20 YouTube instructional videos and I still can't figure it out. I guess it's higher heat and less time? I guess that's for Try #3.
But the main point of this blog is to let everyone know that if you've never grilled before and have been too intimidated to try, just give it a shot. If I can do it, quite literally anyone can.
Oh and if you're not just a beginner novice like me and want to actually step up your cooking/grilling game, follow Chef Donny on Instagram. He does really cool shit like cooking steak and eggs every morning while he listens to Kanye West on his rooftop.