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Gear Up for Summer Grilling

outdoor kitchen grillWhether you’ve recently built an elaborate new outdoor kitchen or simply wheeled a basic grill onto your cedar deck, you know that when the sun comes out it’s time to tie on an apron and brandish your grilling tongs for some outdoor cooking. You also know that the pressure’s on for this weekend, one of the biggest days of the year for barbecuing nationwide.

If you’re like many Americans, you’ll probably fire up the grill for Memorial Day – across the nation, die-hard grilling enthusiasts will cook outdoors this weekend, rain or shine. To help you get in the spirit, here are some fun barbecue facts from the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association:

Top three holidays for barbecueing

  1. Fourth of July (71%)
  2. Memorial Day (57%)
  3. Labor Day (55%)

Most popular foods cooked on the grill

  1. Burgers (85%)
  2. Steak (80%)
  3. Hot dogs (79%)
  4. Chicken (73%)

Most popular barbecue sauce flavors

  1. Hickory
  2. Mesquite
  3. Honey
  4. Spicy-hot

Side dishes most commonly prepared on the grill

  1. Corn (41%)
  2. Potatoes (41%)
  3. Other veggies (32%)

Regional barbecue styles

  • Carolinas: Pork, although folks can’t agree whether the sauce should have a vinegar, mustard or tomato base.
  • Deep South: Spicy marinades and rubs with a Cajun kick.
  • California: Lighter fare, such as salmon.
  • Midwest: This barbecue hotbed features meat and sauce combos for every appetite.

Learn about safe grilling practices.

[photo: mccun934]

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