I have to admit my stomach has been rumbling a whole lot lately as my email inbox continues to fill up with the newest grilling recipes, the latest spices and ingredients that I must have, and tips for cooking the best "mouth-watering burgers" on the planet. Ah, yes, it's summertime and almost more importantly, it's the Fourth of July!
I know, BBQs and cookouts are on everyone's mind these days and who can blame us? There's nothing better than the smell of food on the grill, right? But with all of us cooking in our backyards and in parks and on the beach, risk for injuries and home fires increases. But here at NFPA we can help you stay safer with some easy (and thoughtful) tips to help keep danger at bay:
- First, place the grill well away from the house or deck railings, and out from under eaves or trees. The heat and any unintended flareups won't be able to ignite flammable materials if it's not close by.
- Second, keep children and pets, and anything that can catch fire like dish towels or pot holders away from your cooking area. If you have to create a makeshift circle around your grill to serve as a reminder, go for it!
- Third, be alert and keep an eye on what you're grilling. It’s easy to get caught up in the festivities and not be aware of what’s happening on or near the grill. Staying focused reduces your risk for injuries and it keeps mealtime on track when hungry guests are waiting.
Of course, additional resources can always be found on NFPA's website. Our grilling safety messages, tips sheets and infographic are downloadable and easy to print out and keep handy as you prepare for your family festivities.
We also created a new grilling video that reminds us how to properly use our grill, and a second one that shows us how to test propane grills for gas leaks BEFORE we start cooking. In just a couple of minutes, you'll learn something (that you thought you knew but didn't) when it comes to using your beloved cooking equipment. And you'll be glad you did! I urge you to take a look and share it with everyone you know.
And about those recipes, looking for a new one for your next cookout? Our friends at Stop & Shop have some great ideas for meals using pork, vegetables and meat. Check out their webpage for inspiration!
Have a safe and happy Fourth of July, everyone! We'll see you after the holiday!
Photo courtesy of Stop & Shop