seasoning vs filth. where do you draw the line?

Bik

Member
Messages
11
just curious. i am new to pellet grilling, having had a gas grill for my adult life. i have seen the videos here, talked to some of the rec tec guys. a greasy/dirty grill is a seasoned grill? i admit i am a bit confused on the subject. i can understand how using a grill over time can "season it". metal bends and gives under heat, the cooker learns hot and cold spots, learns techniques , etc to improve the food. but i just dont see how a dirty greasy grill adds to the "seasoning". i tend to clean the grill after each cook. it is not pristine, and some grease does accumulate over time, because i am just not that anal about it. but purposefully allowing grease and cooking waste to accumulate on the grill to "season" it? dont get it, or am i naive and missing something?
 

Buckeye smoker

Well-known member
Messages
394
Grill(s) owned
Bull
This is one of those opinion posts. Mine is this: I always clean my grates and my drip pan, meat and cabin probes... But the inside walls only get cleaned once a year more to prevent possibility of grease fire than anything else. I love to open a smoker and smell that built up porkygoodness, now does the smell infuse the next cook on reheat?..I have no idea....haha.
 

ken g

Well-known member
Messages
57
Grill(s) owned
Stampede
I clean my grates, change the foil on the drip pan after each cook. Vacuum the fire pot and bottom every three cooks or so. When soot starts to flake on interior, I use brush on vacuum and remove it. Like Buckeye, I have no idea what flavor this imparts to new cooks. It is a cooker and I bet the pro's in restaurants are not cleaning theirs daily. JMO.
 

ndfan6464

Well-known member
Active Military
Messages
231
Location
Summerville, SC
Grill(s) owned
Stampede
The "seasoning" doesnt add a ton of flavor or more smoke. Seasoning to a grill or smoker is just like seasoning a cast iron pan. It aids in sealing the metal. It protects the metal and grates all while making it "non-stick". Seasoning a new smoker an grill also cooks off all the factory processing oils, packaging materials that got missed etc. Henace why every owners manual says to cook your grill or smoker for an X amount of time.

Professional restaurants do have to clean their cookers on a regular basis. Health and safety codes require it.

Like the other members have posted, I clean the grates after every cook. Being stainless iam not worried about rust. The chamber itself i never clean, just vacuum and a little wipe down of the excess grease...
 

Greg Jones

Active member
Messages
26
Location
Berea, Kentucky
Grill(s) owned
Bull
I tend to lean towards the clean side, although I’m not anal about it either. I want to keep what touches my food clean, and everything else I want clean enough to not cause a grease fire. I suspect the only ‘flavor’ that could possibly be added to the food, would be from old grease buildup in the drip pan. Not a flavor that I would want added to my food.

Rec Tec recommends burning off the oils from manufacturing, then cooking a fatty item like bacon to ‘season’ the grill. I expect that the purpose of this ‘seasoning’ is more about coating all the interior mild steel parts to prevent rust than an attempt to add a seasoning flavor to everything you cook in it.

I’ve used a Kamado-style cooker for 17 years now, and I’ve never seen anyone recommend seasoning them. It’s a fairly common practice with those cookers to heat them up to 700-900 degrees for 30 minutes once a year to burn away all the build up. That keeps the crud from flaking on the food and also helps prevent mold, which is not uncommon when they sit unused over the winter. No pellet grill is capable of getting hot enough to do that, so some manual cleaning will be needed occasionally.
 

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