Happy 4th of July! plus some green-grilling tips from Treehugger

HCAs form in meats and fish cooked at high temperatures when amino acids and creatine (a chemical in muscle) react. Another nasty culprit, PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) form when fat drips off the meat into the flame or heating element. PAHs rise in the smoke and deposit on the food.

Yeah, lots of delicious stuff is bad for us.

Here's some steps to greener grilling with lower or no carcinogenic risk:

1. Flip meat frequently when cooking to prevent HCAs from forming.
2. Raise grilling surface from the heat source to reduce the temperature and black char.
3. Cook at lower temperatures.
4. Marinate meats to decrease HCA formation up to 96 percent.
5. Pre-cook meats to limit exposure on the grill.
6. Trim fat off meat and grill leaner cuts that drip less to reduce exposure to PAHs.
7. Spread foil on or under the grill to reduce dripping fat that causes PAHs. 
8. Grill veggie burgers, vegetables and fruits (HCAs only forms on muscle meats). Note: organ meat (liver), eggs, and tofu have little to no HCA content.

Have a wonderful holiday everyone!

photo by gerald l. campbell- stars and stripes forever

1 comment

Sherry said...

Really great tips, I did not know about the marinade.....I was thinking of grilling, but it's 96 in the shade. We are thinking of sushi and the movies. Going to see, I Am Love.