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Baking Cookies Like a Man On The Bubba Keg Grill

Posted by Dave On May - 22 - 2009

We all would agree that fresh baked cookies always taste better than store bought or ones that have been sitting around for a while. So how do you get fresh baked cookies at the end of a great meal while tailgating? Bake them on the Bubba Keg Grill, of course.

For the uninitiated, the Bubba Keg Grill’s top and bottom dampers allow you to adjust the air flow and oxygen level getting to your lump charcoal. That feature coupled with the double walled, insulated convection style design makes it just like a regular convection oven but the versatility of taking it outdoors. With that said, I wondered if I could use it like any other convection oven, i.e. bake cookies on the Bubba Keg Grill. I am happy to report that it was a success. See the photos below and click each for larger view:

bubba_keg_cookies_001.jpgbubba_keg_cookies_002.jpgbubba_keg_cookies_003.jpg

Right off the bat, please disregard the heart shaped cookie sheet. It was the only round cookie sheet in the house and the rectangular ones would not fit on the Bubba Keg Grill. If you would like to bake cookies on your own Bubba Keg Grill, I would suggest using round pizza pans for cookie sheets.

Because this was an experiment that I was not 100% sure would work, I used your run of the mill Nestle Toll House cookie dough you can buy in the tube at any grocery store. There would be no point in going to all the trouble of making cookies from scratch if this technique was not going to work.

bubba_keg_cookies_004.jpgWhat I did was I got the Bubba Keg Grill up to about 500 degrees much like I would if I were tailgating and grilling meats. I gently adjusted the top and bottom dampers down and was able to get the Bubba Keg Grill to consistently maintain 375 degrees, the recommended cooking temperature on the cookie packaging. I then proceeded as I normally would had I been working with a conventional oven in my home kitchen. I put the cookies on the sheet, placed the cookie sheet on the grill, closed the top, set the timer and went back inside the house to watch the game. The timer went off and the cookies were done to perfection as you can see in the photo to the right.

I took them off the sheet and let them cool. Once cooled, I tried one and they tasted just as they would normally had they been cooked in a traditional oven. There was no smokey flavor. The bottoms of the cookies were not burned because the charcoal was under the pan. Based on the taste, no one would have known they were “baked” on a BBQ grill.

So if you are craving fresh baked cookies while tailgating, try baking them on the Bubba Keg Grill. I would suggest grilling all your meats first because they normally require higher temperatures. Once all your meats are done, reduce the top and bottom dampers to the point the coals maintain a consistent temperature of 375 or whatever temperature your cookies require. Once you are done baking your cookies, close down the dampers all the way and let the natural lump charcoal burn itself out for later use. Now when tailgating you can have your cake cookies and eat it them too.


Grill Charms A Must Have Tailgating Accessory

Posted by Dave On May - 20 - 2009

Grill Charms BoxWhether you are the Grill Sergeant for a big tailgating crowd or you man the grill for a more intimate tailgate party, I have found a product that will avoid complaints, food allergy reactions and make you the tailgating hero without any effort on your part. The product is called Grill Charms and they are dime-sized solid stainless steel charms you place in food prior to cooking. Depending on the styles and collection your prefer they can help you identify grilled meats that are smothered in spicy marinades, are grilled medium rare or can alert to a possible food allergy, i.e. peanut sauce was used. You grill meats as you normally would and when it is time to serve, there is no question which piece of chicken was soaking all night in Uncle Henry’s 12-alarm fire habanero marinade.

They say necessity is the mother of all invention and that is just the case with Grill Charms. Leslie Haywood is the Founder and President of Charmed Life Products, LLC, and she invented Grill Charms after a bad experience with some spicy Jamaican Jerk Chicken. As you might imagine, her husband mixed up which pieces of chicken were marinated in which sauce and Leslie got a spicy piece when she was expecting a mild one. That led her to develop grill charms so the mistake was not repeated. Her invention was so well received it even landed her a spot on CNBC’s “The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch”. Take a look.

When I first saw Grill Charms I thought they would be perfect not only for tailgating but for use at home as well. My Mother-in-Law likes her steaks well done. Yes, it kills me every time I have to essentially burn and ruin a steak for her but that is the way she likes it. My wife likes her steak medium. I personally like mine on the medium rare to rare side. (Depending on my mood I like my steak so rare that a good vet can have it up on it’s feet in about 30 minutes.) So now with Grill Charms, my wife, my mother-in-law and I can essentially pick out which steak we want before they hit the grill and there is no confusion as to which one goes on first and which one will get just a few grill marks.

As I mentioned earlier, Grill Charms come in four different varieties; The Steak Collection, The Spicy Collection, The Charmed Life Collection and The Pink Collection. Here is a brief synopsis of what each Grill Charm Collection is all about:

The Spicy Collection – Grillers can offer mild, medium and spicy sauces and rubs without any confusion anymore. These three versions of Grill Charms offer a pepper with an X through it to indicate mild sauces, a regular pepper for regular and a pepper with fire under it to indicate spicy. No longer will you get dirty looks from someone that got a mouthful of spicy when they were expecting mild. Another great benefit to using the spicy collection, an unsuspecting tailgater that accidentally gets a spicy piece of meat won’t drink your entire beer cooler trying to put the fire out. That’s worth the price of buying an entire set right there.

The Charmed Life Collection – This collection has images of things like sailboats, martini glasses, four-leafed clovers, etc. Things that indicate someone is living a charmed life. These charms work great for people who have specific dietary needs like a low sodium or low carb diet. This way there is no confusion when the food comes off the grill and you won’t have to rush your pal with the peanut allergy to the hospital and miss the game. Just make sure those people with food allergies or taste preferences remember which charm they chose before they start drinking. It’s kind of like trying to remember if you were the race car or the shoe in Monopoly after a few Jagermeister shots.

The Steak Collection – While still uncooked, simply place the Grill Charms into steaks or burgers with the desired doneness charm. The Steak Collection uses letters such as R to indicate Rare, MR = Medium Rare, M for Medium and MW =Medium Well. (No Grill Charm with WD for Well Done but then again, if you have a person that likes it that way, they’ll probably be able to know which one is theirs by comparing it to one of the charcoal briquettes.) With the Steak Collection Grill Charms there is no more cutting into the steaks to find the one you want. You simply look for your Grill Charm and start eating.

The Pink Collection – The Pink Collection has charms similar to the Charmed Life Collection in that the symbols are those of a chef’s hat, ladies shoe, a swan, etc. The thing that sets these apart is that 10% of the proceeds from The Pink Collection will go to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation to help fund breast cancer research and find a cure. Leslie Haywood’s mother was diagnosed with breast cancer and she herself is a breast cancer survivor. You can rest assured that this is not just lip service to make you feel good that the company is donating to a worthy cause just to get you to buy their product. Leslie has two young daughters herself so you know she is desperately looking for a way to cure this disease so that her daughters do not have to face it in the future.

Grill Charms Chicken

The introduction to this product could not have been more perfectly timed. The obvious uses for tailgating is quite apparent but Grill Charms would make a perfect gift for any tailgater or outdoor/indoor griller. Father’s Day is right around the corner and Grill Charms would be that unique gift idea for the dad that is sick of getting a neck tie every year. Graduation gift ideas are always a struggle and Grill Charms would make a great gift for that college grad that will be taking their tailgating to the next level now that they are officially an alumnus. Lastly, Grill Charms would be that unique groomsmen gift idea you are searching for. Grill Charms beat the hell out of the boring old engraved flask or monogrammed cuff links. (I’ve been in a number of weddings and I would have much preferred to receive a set of Grill Charms than the six or seven pewter flasks I have collecting dust in my liquor cabinet.)

Each box of Grill Charms, no matter the type of collection your prefer, is $19.95 for a set of six. Individual charms sell for $4 a piece. You can purchase them on the web at the GrillCharms.com.

Get A Tailgate PartyMate While The Price Is Still Low

Posted by Dave On May - 15 - 2009

If you haven’t seen the Tailgate Party Mate before, it is a unique tailgating table that attaches to your tow hitch. TailgatingIdeas.com was one of the first to discover this innovative piece of tailgating gear and offer it for sale. Now it appears the Tailgate PartyMate has caught the eye of major media and investors and is ready for the Big Time. Take a sneak peek at the new commercial that you should be seeing on TV coming soon.

Did you notice the new price of $299 + shipping mentioned at the end of the video? So did I.

The good news is that you can still get the Tailgate Party Mate from TailgatingIdeas.com at the introductory price of $249 + $20 flat rate shipping. That price is valid  from now until June 15, 2009.

If you have been on the fence on getting a Tailgate PartyMate, now is the time to buy. Plus you can get your own Tailgate Party Mate well before everyone else sees the commercial on TV and will want one of their own.

Welcome Our Newest Sponsor: Dixie Grillworks

Posted by Dave On May - 12 - 2009

The GrillipedeLast month you may have noticed we here at TailgatingIdeas.com added a new sponsor, Dixie Grillworks, to the four square ads you see at the top of the website. So technically they are not a “new” sponsor and if you haven’t checked out their products yet, you really owe it to yourself to do so. They have some of the most unique stainless steel grill accessories dedicated to charcoal grills only. Just a few examples include:

The Grillipede – Dixie Grill Works’ best-selling item is the Grillipede, a roasting rack for cooking stuffed jalapenos and chicken drumettes on a grill. The Grillipede can also be flipped upside down and used to suspend kabobs in place so they don’t stick to the grill or get scorched by flare-ups. They make The Grillipede in sizes suitable for everyone from casual tailgaters to big time caterers. The standard size can hold 25 peppers/drumettes, the Grillipede PRO Jalapeno Roaster accommodates 36 peppers/drumettes while the Grillipede JUMBO Jalapeno Roaster handles 72 peppers/drumettes at one time.

The Traveller Grill – Although it has only been on the market for about a month, the Traveller Compact Grill has become an instant hit. This grill has an integrated receiver so that it can be transported to the game using a simple trailer hitch connector. You can cook with it while it is attached or quickly remove it for table top or ground level grilling. Although it is only a tad larger than most of the popular compact grills on the market, the Traveller Grill weighs in at around 50 pounds because of its super rugged construction. It is all stainless steel and includes stout cast iron grates for the charcoal bed and the cooking surface. This grill does a fantastic job of searing in flavor and the damper on the lid lets you control the flame for smoking and lower temperature cooking. Depending on who you ask over at Dixie Grillworks, the grill was either named for Robert E. Lee’s stout and trusty horse or those “to go” cups you get at bars located near stadiums where original containers are banned. By the way, did I mention it is sturdy and heavy duty constructed? Check out this YouTube video that showcases The Traveler Grill’s ability to handle the weight of a Land Rover.

The Bacon BossBacon Boss – Dixie Grill Works also offers a clever stainless wedge-shaped gadget called the Bacon Boss that lets you cook bacon on your grill and catches the grease in built-in trays. The unique wedge design allows you to cook bacon on your grill without taking up too much space and leaving room for other foods to be cooked. The Bacon Boss comes in two sizes, The Original Bacon Boss is 10″ long, Bacon Boss PRO is 20″ long and the Bacon Boss JUMBO measures 30″ in length. That is plenty long enough to cook more than a pound of bacon.

Luau Grill – Dixie’s best known product is The Luau Grill. This grill was described as looking like “a cross between a stainless steel casket and a wheelbarrow”. The Luau Grill is basically a jumbo charcoal powered pressure cooker with a built in smoker. The grill enables anyone to cook a whole pig hassle-free in a fraction of the time of conventional grills. Although there are popular wooden (yes, a grill made out of metal covered wood) Cuban-style roasting boxes out there, the Dixie Grillworks version is designed for the serious caterer or parking lot show-off. It’s roomier and all stainless steel with a whopping 1,536 square inches of cooking surface that can be used while the pig is inside. It even has high temp insulation to trap heat in (like convection grills a.k.a. the Bubba Keg Grill) so you can cook a large pig in less than four hours using only one bag of lump charcoal.

The Luau GrillRegarding Dixie Grillworks as a company, all their products are made from 100% stainless steel in the U.S.A. at their Alabama manufacturing facility. On July 4th 2008, company founder Mike Schuerer decided in a margarita-induced haze that there was a shortage of premium stainless steel grill manufacturers dedicated to charcoal grills only. The next week he formed Dixie Grillworks. Mike had already taken time to investigate local natural-flame cooking techniques while traveling in Belize, China, Guatemala, Hungary, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Korea, Mexico and Thailand. His friend, Harold Davis, had previously been involved in the manufacture of barbeque trailers while his family had operated a successful barbeque restaurant and catering service. Over the course of numerous camping, fishing, hunting and kayaking trips, Harold and Mike had compared notes on grilling methods, smoking techniques and equipment design for years. Mike’s company built industrial ovens based on Harold’s designs, so the transition to grills wasn’t hard. With the help of his hard-partying employees, Mike launched the Dixie Grillworks website and started hitting regional tailgating parties, BBQ contests and special events.

So make sure to check out Dixie Grillworks and let them know you heard about them and their line of products from TailgatingIdeas.com.


Price Slashed On Premium BoomCoolers

Posted by Dave On May - 7 - 2009

You may recall we told you about The BoomCooler back in April. Basically it is a combination of a cooler with a mobile sound system built into it complete with a 10″ sub woofer, dual 6″x9″ speakers, a 600-Watt amp and a Kenwood KDC-MP442U AM/FM radio and CD Player. Although it is not intended for wet storage you can still bring the party and let the others bring the drinks.

For a limited time, the price on The BoomCooler has been drastically reduced, almost in half. The new price is $649.00 and that does include shipping to the continental United States. Keep in mind that this new pricing is not a permanent price drop. This is only a special Spring Sale Price.

We’re not sure what their definition of “Spring” is or how long this “limited time offer” is valid so if you want one, I would go ahead and pull the trigger and get one now. You don’t want to sit around debating the idea only to find out the price has gone back to normal. For you tech savvy types, visit the official product page for the Premium BoomCooler to get all the specs.

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About Me

TailgatingIdeas.com is a tailgating blog dedicated to bringing you the latest and most intriguing tailgating ideas out there. Whether it is the latest tailgating gear reviews, a great new recipe or a funny list to make you smile, our goal is to inform and entertain the avid and the casual tailgater alike.

Started in August 2007 by tailgating enthusiast Dave Lamm, TailgatingIdeas.com has evolved into an advocate for tailgaters rights and is not afraid to touch on controversial issues confronting those who frequent the tailgating parking lots.

To learn more about TailgatingIdeas.com and our team of writers, reviewers, cartoonists and contributors, please visit the About Us page.