Grill Steak In Foil Packets For Easier Cleanup

Once outdoor cooking season hits, there's nothing better than firing up the grill for easy and delicious meals while enjoying the great weather. The only downside to grilling up a juicy piece of meat or an array of vegetable side dishes is the cleanup. Not only will there be bowls and utensils, but there's always some food residue left on the grates afterwards.

There is one simple solution, and it is probably already in your pantry. Grab a few pieces of heavy-duty aluminum foil, and grill your meat and sides in packets instead. Start by choosing the perfect steak at the store, then cut the meat into the desired size for each packet. The larger the pieces, the more the end result will lean toward the rarer side. Add some cubed potatoes or other vegetables along with your choice of seasoning. Fold it up tight, and the packets are ready to go. The foil will seal in all the flavor and juices while everything cooks to perfection. Finally, don't forget to allow the meat to rest after grilling. This should be about half the time it was on the grill. The best part is, the only cleanup involved will be to toss the used foil in the trash.

A rustic take on a classic French technique

The concept of cooking in foil packets isn't new; in fact, this style of food preparation is similar to a classic French technique known as cooking en papillote, which means "in paper." When food is heated inside folded packets of parchment paper or aluminum foil, steam builds up and is trapped inside. This method will gently cook delicate foods like fish or vegetables, but it also happens to be a very neat and tidy way of preparing a cut of steak.

The key to cooking inside these packets is the placement of the ingredients. First, the protein should be seasoned, then layered with a sauce or vegetables. Finally, any herbs or aromatics can be added on top. A small amount of liquid, if desired, can be added to help create the important steam. A spoonful of wine or a squeeze of citrus juice are great choices. If the protein is particularly lean, a drizzle of olive oil is also a good idea. Once the packet is sealed, your work is done.

Other reasons to make recipes in foil

Preparing a complete meal in foil or parchment is not only conducive to easy cleanup, but it can also offer a lovely presentation. There's no need for fancy plating, because all you have to do is gently peel away the folds and serve it directly from the packet.

Using foil is a great choice for high-heat preparations other than the grill. These packets can also be cooked over an open campfire, or even in the oven all year round. Beyond just meats and fish, there are so many other creative recipes to prepare in foil packets. Everything from corn on the cob to stuffed peppers, even fruit cobblers, can all be made over a flame using this technique. Plus, nothing needs to go to waste, because there are even ways to clean your kitchen or grill using the leftover aluminum foil when you're done eating. It can be balled up and used as an effective abrasive scrubber on grill grates or cast iron skillets.