Author, Taming The Flame
Executive Chef, Hill Country Barbecue and Hill’s Country Chicken, NYC
Founder of Girls at the Grill, company and designer of innovative line of outdoor cooking and kitchen tools
Contributing writer to various national magazines such as Better Homes & Gardens, Saveur, etc
Writes a bi-monthly column for Associate Press called American Table
Elizabeth Karmel Tames the Flame
CBN.com -QUEEN OF THE GRILL
Elizabeth is known as America’s Foremost Female Grilling Expert. She is frequently quoted and is an informational resource on grilling and barbecue to the country’s media and food writers, chefs and cookbook authors.
She was raised on what is considered the original barbecue, pulled pork, forty miles away from the famed Lexington barbecue in North Carolina. When Elizabeth was about sixteen, she began grilling with her friends. Her love for grilling continued when she moved away to go to college. She found that grilling made everything she cooked taste better and it was a great way for friends to eat together without spending a lot of money. Elizabeth also realized that in order for her to eat good barbecue, she would have to learn to make it herself.
In 1992, she had a publicity job where the makers of Weber grills became her client. It was then that she “fell head over heels in love with outdoor cooking.” Elizabeth found that there was hardly any reference material for grilling and barbecuing, so she set about teaching herself how to grill and barbecue everything she could. She discovered everything that she grilled tasted great – so great that she would only use her oven to bake and her stove to boil water. Elizabeth also started going on the barbecue circuit as a sponsor representative, then became a judge, and eventually a member of two competition barbecue teams. She noticed she was the only “girl at the grill.” She also realized that most women she met, even the ones who were good cooks, had never stepped in front of a grill. Elizabeth decided it was time for women to get grilling. She created Girls at the Grill in 2001 as a way to spread her passion for outdoor cooking with women. Since then, Elizabeth has found there has been a 50% increase in ladies grilling. She says grilling can be intimidating for women because of the fire building element. Now there are really good gas grills that are easy to use and give consistent heat, so anyone can learn to love grilling. Elizabeth has mastered her grilling skills and how to make Carolina barbecue, which has earned her the name “Queen of the Grill.” She continues to spread the good word of grilling and barbecue, which she believes is her true calling.
EMPOWERED TO GRILL
The Girls at the Grill motto is: “If you can eat it, you can grill it!” Elizabeth maintains this is true. All you need to grill is 10% skill, 90% will to grill. The incentive for grilling is that the quality of food is better, it enhances all food and enhances their natural sugars, and there is no muss, no fuss – which means there is minimal preparation and clean up. You can grill everything. Elizabeth says pizza on the grill has been popular…so much that she is writing a second book on the subject. Her “grilling revelation” is bananas, which caramelizes them and intensifies the natural sugars. She says it is great to grill bananas and then put them in a banana split.
Elizabeth says the key to great grilling is being able to control your direct and indirect heat. Gas grills are a good use for indirect heat. She also says it is good to buy a bigger grill than you think you need and spend as much on your grill as you can afford. An outdoor grill is just as important as your indoor oven. Also, you will need good quality olive oil, salt, and pepper, the Grilling Trilogy. The will to grill, a good grill, control of your heat and the Grilling Trilogy are the basics to good grilling.
LET’S GET GRILLING
Elizabeth will demo the following recipes for the grill:
- Tumbled Tomatoes, p. 289
- Salt-Crusted Shrimp with Potent Lemon Garlic Dipping Sauce, p. 182 (live demo)
- Grilled Antipasto with Mezzo Soprano Sauce, p. 216
- Straight-up Deviled Eggs, p. 298
- Texas Hill Country Style Brisket, p. 251-252
- Zesty Lemon Bars, p. 330
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