BBQ guru Ted Reader brings gourmet to the grill

Tue Dec 1, 2009 8:13am EST
 
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By Claire Sibonney

TORONTO (Reuters Life!) - It takes more than a little snow to deter Canadian chef and pyrotechnic wizard Ted Reader from firing up the barbecue during the cold winter months.

With 106 barbecues, grills and smokers in his backyard, including a 10-foot, 3,500-pound trailer rig, Reader proves the art of barbecue can flourish anywhere.

The popular TV and radio personality has published more than a dozen cookbooks and launched his own line of BBQ sauces, planks and grills.

His latest book, "Napoleon's Everyday Gourmet Burgers" which will be released in the spring, features such culinary concoctions as burgers made with black cherries or stuffed with lobster and brie, as well as hot, sticky and quirky recipes such as a moose burger and a barbell-shaped patty tribute to Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Reader, 46, spoke to Reuters about grilling, gender stereotypes and his childhood inspiration.

Q: What is the secret to grilling a perfect burger?

A: "Don't push it, don't squish it, don't cut it. Leave it alone. High heat lid open, low heat lid closed. It doesn't matter how you cook it, just don't mess with it. Take your time. With burgers usually the lid is open and you watch what's going on. A burger should be icy cold when it hits the grill unlike a steak, which you should bring to room temperature. But don't squish it. They key is every time you want to touch a burger have a sip of beer instead."

Q: What is it about barbecue and grilling that appeals to more men than women?   Continued...

 
<p>Canadian chef Ted Reader appears in this undated handout photo. With 106 barbecues, grills and smokers in his backyard, including a 10-foot, 3,500-pound trailer rig, Reader proves the art of barbecue can flourish anywhere. REUTERS/Mike McColl/Handout</p>