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Old 04-14-2005, 10:15 AM   #1
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Indoor grills - worth the trouble and expense?

We are about to install a new kitchen and expect to use either a 6 burner professional cooktop or a 4 burner with grill. We love cooking on our outdoor grill and use it year round as long as snow is not blocking our way. We have been told that, while not an equivalent to our outdoor unit, the indoor grill can produce very good results. A friend of ours who is equally in love with grilling uses his quite a lot.

Others have expressed concerns. First, the grilling surface is very small in comparison to the outdoor grill, so the amount of food you can cook is very limited. Next, no matter how well you ventilate, there will be some greasy smoke and smells released into the room. Finally, there is a potential cleanup issue, with lots of foods, the spatter factor is much more intense than it might be in a saucepan.

And would the loss of two burners be worth it? We will also have two wall ovens and why not use the broiler?

I note that the test kitchen has a number of cooktops with grills and wanted to get some perspective before making this decision.

Thanks.

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Old 04-14-2005, 10:19 AM   #2
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Guess it depends on your needs and how you will use it. What results are you looking for.

Nothing tastes as good as cooking it outdoors.
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Old 04-14-2005, 11:04 AM   #3
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We love to grill, but winter poses it's problems. We do veggies, steaks, burgers, fajitas, what have you all the time when the weather allows.

We don't grill fish (child with food allergies) and we were told that chicken with skin on and other greasy flame up type foods are not recommended on the indoor unit.

We thought that this would give us one more option, but if it amounts to nothing more than a glorified broiler that cannot contain its mess, then what's the point?
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Old 04-14-2005, 11:16 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by remycancook
. First, the grilling surface is very small in comparison to the outdoor grill, so the amount of food you can cook is very limited. Next, no matter how well you ventilate, there will be some greasy smoke and smells released into the room. Finally, there is a potential cleanup issue, with lots of foods, the spatter factor is much more intense than it might be in a saucepan.
All true. With that in mind, the culinary school used to have an indoor grill. It was small and narrow and didn't get hot enough. Other teachers complained that it splattered food alot (they aren't very ingenious).
With that said, my favorite pan is a square, cast iron grill that goes on the stovetop. Get's nice and hot.
But yes, it does splatter and it is small. I grill in batches and finish in the oven if I have to. What I do, which is not cost effective, is to put aluminum foil all around the area I need to use the grill on. When done, I just clean up the foil and Windex some areas. At the school, I put sheet pans upright around the grill.
At the local asian store, they sell folding (like the thing you put on your windshield) aluminum that goes around a stovetop to keep splattering to a minimum.
Since you are getting a 6 burner...you are getting a high powered suck-up type fan that blows air out the kitchen?
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Old 04-15-2005, 10:36 AM   #5
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The biggest problem I see with a built in grill is the grease and grime that accumulates as time passes by. No matter how much you clean. Most of those so called professional grills are not removable. Plus since they are indoors you cannot scrub them and clean them as you could an outdoor grill (just because of the messes it would create and splattering that would take place)

There are nice long grill pans that are available. You can flip them to use them as either grill or griddle and best part you can wash them when you are done and store them for later use.

On a side note when I was looking for a house I toured some homes that had professional Viking cooktops with built in grills and talk about the sorry state they were in. Being an anal person I am so glad I did not opt for them when designing my new house and kitchen. I love my 5 burner all stainless clad cooktop.
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Old 04-15-2005, 10:54 AM   #6
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Go for the six burner stove and buy a shovel to clear a path to the grill.
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Old 04-23-2005, 03:16 PM   #7
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My parents had a Jen-Aire range with the convertible grill/griddle on the side. I can only remember one time in the 12 years they owned that condo that it was used for grilling. Personally, I think that the oven broiler will do as well if you can live without the grill marks on the food. Good technique will make a delectable steak in the broiler when doing it outside is not an option. Veggies may be a bit more difficult, although I've done a few such (zuchini, yellow squash, pepper strips, etc.)

I look at winter as an opportunity to try other forms of cooking, even though here in Denver we can usually grill year round.
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Old 04-26-2005, 01:52 PM   #8
 
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Thanks for the timely information! We're shopping new ranges and dh has been talking about adding a grill top. I'm opposed for all the reasons mentioned. He does great with the outdoor grill and our weather is favorable for grilling year round, so why bring it indoors!
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Old 04-30-2005, 09:22 PM   #9
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I'm so jealous. Cannot imagine having the $$ to install pro equipment in my kitchen. I'm just hoping to be able to finish the old kitchen I have the way I want it. That said, I've known many, many people who've installed indoor grills and all hated them so didn't use them. They've probably improved. But the complaints were that they create a lot of smoke, and the exhaust fans are innefective and/or so noisy as to render them impossible to use. Freinds had fantasies of themselves cooking on the grill for freinds gathered 'round the island, and the freinds either had to leave the room for the smoke, or couldn't possibly converse and enjoy the experience because of the fan's noise. I hope they've improved (I haven't known someone who had one now in years).
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