Sunday, August 9, 2009

MAPP Gas - C'mon Baby Light My Fire !

Whether you are grilling or barbecuing, there are lots of ways to start your fire.
Gassers just push a button (for the first month anyway, after that the ignition switch goes bad and they start playing the "start the gas flow and drop in a match" game).

Charcoal users can use things like
  • lighter fluid or Matchlight (that is so wrong, just my $.02)
  • starter cubes (blocks of wax and sawdust)
  • chimneys (starts coal without chemicals, using newspaper)
  • electric starter burners
But my starter of choice is MAPP gas. It's fast, readily available at hardware stores, and can be used for plumbing & other things around the house. Plus, to be honest, it's just fun! It's as simple as holding the flame over 3 areas of coal in your fire box for 20 seconds each. Voila!

I had to replace my MAPP gas unit this week. The trigger assembly of my old one died and Alexis got me the new, improved Benzomatic TS-8000.

Here it is next to my old torch for comparison.
The differences
  • larger capacity
  • lower center of gravity - it's less likely to get knocked over
  • gas flow control knob - so I don't have to use as much gas
  • "Green key" - lets you safely purge the cylinder for recycle
My favorite safety rules from the package
  • "Never point torch towards face, other persons, or flammable objects."
  • "Never attempt to use torch as a cigarette lighter."
  • "Never attempt to repair or heat a gasoline tank, a chemical drum, an aerosol can, or any other container containing a flammable liquid or gas."
I tested it out last night and the shorter package also makes it easier to maneuver while lighting coal inside the Big Green Egg. I like it better than the old one.

Since I had a fire going, I used my pork rub (see the Porkus Chopus Maximus post) on a pair of pork tenderloins and grilled them using direct heat at 350f for 7 minutes a side (21 minutes total). I pulled them off at 140f internal and they were crispy on the outside, yet just a hint of pink on the thicker pieces*.*Don't freak out. Today's pork is leaner and cleaner. If you take it to 165f, it'll be powdery dry, blech!