There are times in life when a truly transformative tool comes along. For me, the griddle was one of those.
I have five young kids. On any given day my wife and I are cooking up a mess of food, and sometimes two messes at the same meal (dietary restrictions), which can result in a giant pile of dishes.
Kitchen cleanup can be touch-and go after meals, depending on how much wrangling has to be done to keep the young ones on track for the evening. And it has been HOT outside. Seriously hot. Don’t get me started about how I feel about heating food inside the house.
There have been many times my wife and I finish up an evening thinking “there has to be a way to make mealtime better”.
The dishes alone after a full meal prep and table service are daunting. I often find myself staring into the full sink thinking “this can wait” as we attempt to finish up the evening with parental integrity.
There has to be a way to make mealtime better
For some reason doing the dishes was THE dreaded chore in my family growing up. Repetition only served to increase that sentiment. Perhaps you can see why I say: eliminating a single regular offender from the sink is a big deal. Particularly if it has to be scrubbed, which means the sink needs to be relatively empty to get the necessary clearance to get after it. Clearly the best way to wash a dish is to not use it in the first place.
After I finished my first full meal on the griddle, I tossed some water onto the surface to release a pieces of food, scraped it down and gave it a light coating of oil. Then it hit me
I’m done. And I don’t have to wash anything
Like… for real done. The oil would smoke for a minute, cool, and then the layer nearest the steel surface would polymerize. The remaining oil would protect the steel from moisture.
I brought the pile of food inside, set it on the table and declared “The food is ready!” It wasn’t just the meat. I had steamed and grilled veggies, toasted buns, and cooked up some burgers. So if you tally up all the dishes I avoided using that night it is significant. Bonus: it remained a nice 75 degrees in the house.
This is going to be good. Very good.
Why Do We Love It
Consider the following about the humble Griddle:
- Has a very large cooking surface
- It can reach a very high temperature, and does it fast.
- It is non-stick by virtue of a cast-iron like seasoned surface
- It is cold rolled, rather than cast (aka – extra smooth)
- It has sides. Seriously. This matters.
- Clean up is a breeze
- It can be used for the whole meal
- You can cut on it
- It sounds awesome. Like, the literal sound of using it.
There are just some times that you need all of the right things in concert together to make a single moment that’s bigger than the parts alone would suggest.
With that in mind, we’re going to do a series on this blog that is going to explore the world of things you can only do on a griddle. This idea will get mulled over, written about, exercised, and experimented with.
I’m hoping this will challenge us here at Griddle Smith to think outside the box, and try new things. I’m sure there are ways we can utilize the griddle that our grill-trained brains haven’t even considered. And I hope we can challenge you to use a griddle to its full potential, or to maybe this will be the inspiration you need to make the jump and get a griddle!