One of the Cinder Grill’s most ingenious features is its Drip Tray. This removable, washable tray catches all the juices and fats rendered out of the food, keeping everything neatly out of the way until you’re finished cooking. While the Cinder’s instructions prompt the cook to discard those drippings due to food safety, several of our thoughtful customers have let us know that you’d like to save those liquid culinary assets and use them in your food. So we thought we’d write a brief guide on how to keep and enjoy the contents of the drip tray.
Draining The Drip Tray
To collect the drippings you’ll need two things: a timer, and a completely clean jar with a lid. Once you start the cooking process, set the timer for twenty minutes and put the jar in the fridge. When the 20 minutes are up, pour any drippings into the jar and return it to the fridge. (Pre-chilling the jar helps cool the drippings faster). Repeat this process every 20 minutes until cooking is done. After the last emptying, rinse the tray well and put it back into position. Last but not least, after searing, either use the drippings to deglaze the Cinder plates, scrape them into the tray, and drizzle them over the food, or heat them to boiling in another vessel (microwaving the jar will work) and add them to the food. As well as making a tasty sauce this approach maximizes food safety, as we will discuss next.
Food Safety and the Cinder Grill
The reason our baseline cooking instructions say to discard the drippings has to do with food safety. The temperature range between 40F and 120F is commonly known as the ‘danger zone’ when it comes to food, because between those two temperatures is where pathogens are most comfortable. Cooking on the Cinder Grill takes food well above those temperatures, evenly and completely. However, the contents of the drip tray, which lies beneath the heated plates, don’t reach such high temperatures or such low ones. Those contents cannot be prevented from staying in the Danger Zone temperature range, where they can be colonized by the pathogens that cause foodborne illness. That is, unless we remove them from the tray and chill them in the fridge within a short enough timespan. Every twenty minutes should do, hence the timer.
Safety Notes for the Drip Tray
Some other safety notes to help keep this process safe and allow you to eat the drippings without worry:
- Clean the drip tray well after each use of the Cinder
- Clean it lightly before each use of the Cinder Grill to make certain nothing settled in it.
- Pay attention to the timer. The less time spent at room temperature, in the Danger Zone, the better.
- Refrigerate (or freeze) the drippings while collecting them.
- Also the drippings to a good boil, just to be sure of killing off anything that snuck in.
- Take the opportunity to turn the drippings into a sauce with herbs, finely ground spices, and even more good fats. Frugal and delicious!
The Carnivore Diet, the Keto Diet, and More!
Because the Cinder Grill works particularly well with foodways such as the Carnivore Diet and the Keto Diet, we have researched ways to make it even better. Being told that our customers would like to use the drippings from cooking inspired us to create this guide to how to safely save the contents of the Drip Tray. We would love to keep fulfilling your needs as long as you continue to tell us about them! As always, enjoy your Cinder Grill!