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How to Blacken Meats

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There's a fine line between burning and blackening your steak - we'll show you the difference.


Getting a bit of brownness or char on meats and veggies not only improves their texture, but adds loads of flavor as well. Blackening meat to get an intense, peppery crust is definitely getting more popular.

You can blacken just about anything, but fish and chicken are particularly good with some nice dark grill marks. Begin by getting your grill going with hardwood charcoal, which takes more time to heat up than regular varieties, but also burns hotter. (Need more instruction on using a grill? Check out this article.)

In the meantime, prepare your meat by mixing up a rub (like this Southwestern Rub or Cajun Spice Rub), melting enough butter to coat all of your meat and cutting your chicken or fish - or pork or beef or...you get the picture - into thin, uniform fillets.

Dip each of your fillets into the melted butter, then sprinkle them liberally with spice rub on both sides. This delectable combo of spices and butter will ultimately make up the yummy crust on the meat.

Next, just cook your meat on a very hot grill until you get a nice, dark color on both sides. Keep in mind that this process is supposed to be hot and fast, so if your meat doesn't make a satisfying sizzle when it hits the grill, you may want to wait for it to heat up more before adding any more cutlets or fillets.

Have any tips on blackening meat? Share them below!


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