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TECH
BBQ Extras
by Tim Yu
on 24 May 2007
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Minimalists might only need a small charcoal grill and a few beers for a successful BBQ, but for larger occasions (or maximalists), there are many, many accessories and appliances to amp up the grilling experience. A follow–up to our earlier Nine Free-Standing BBQs and Portable Grills, this third and final installment of the BBQ series sorts through all the tongs and basting brushes to bring you the best of what's out there to create the ultimate summer grill set up. Take notes for Father's Day.

Unless your name is Big Al, you might as well embrace the dorkier side of barbecuing. Designed by chefs, the Grillslinger is a "Barbeque Tool System," or in other words a belt with holster-like pockets for the included knife, tongs and spatula, as well as places to stash salt and pepper, mobile phones, beer openers or anything else you need grill-side. Removable polypropylene inserts for the utensils are dishwasher safe for easy clean-up. It's $100 from Sur La Table.

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Veggies either suffer from uneven cooking or falling though the grill into the ashes. The BBQ Wok (above right) allows both grilling and stir frying vegetables without losing your bounty. Fill it up with veggies and toss it around for a stir fry or let it sit over flames for a char grill. Available for £15 from On The Table

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Counter space is always at a premium when cooking outside. Solidly constructed of faux teak, the Portable BBQ Island by Vermont Castings (above right) acts as both a prep surface or buffet serving area. It also features a cabinet to store plates and glassware while fold-out sides increase surface area, if needed. Durable wheels also make it transportable. Available here for $500

This high-powered Outdoor Stovetop (right) adds a convenient cooking source to your BBQ station. At 21,000 BTUs you can cook stove-top items quickly to keep up with your grilling responsibilities. Convenient features include a bottle holder, towel bars and tool hooks. Made of stainless steel and porcelain-coated cast iron, it's made to withstand the outdoor elements. A fold-down burner further protects the stove-top while a wide base keeps it sturdy. Purchasing details available at Char-Broil.

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Though the exterior design looks more well-suited to a spa product, the Jaccard corn butterer (above) makes corn on the cob more fun for OCD types who can't stand the messy process usually involved. With one end contoured to the corn and the other featuring built-in salt-and-pepper shakers. Pick it up for $8 from La Prima Shops.

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The Lynx free-standing bartending shelf (above left) is a must for thirsty grillers. An insulated ice bin and bottle boots ensure beverages stay cold for extended periods of time. Multiple shelves provide ample storage for all your favorites while two removable fold-out shelves provides a serving surface. A built-in water filtration system and stainless steel sink complete this beverage center available for a steep $2,423 here.

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Serious BBQ aficionados know that nothing compares to a smoker in a grilling station. Weber's here for $200.

Beer-roasting can be accomplished by other methods, but the ceramic Chicken Sitter is an elegant way to do it, standing the bird upright on the grill. Beer or other liquid steams the chicken from within while convected heat from the grill crisps skin to a golden brown. It's $12 from La Prima Shops. Turkey-size versions are also available.

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Fresh cut cedar planks (above left) are a great grilling tool to add a bit of unique flavor to your grilled fish, pork, poultry, beef or vegetables. Just soak your planks in water, vinegar or wine, add your choice of meat and place over indirect heat on the grill. This slow-cooking method infuses food with a sweet smokey flavor. Packs of four available here for $13.

Villaware's PizzaGrill (above right) transforms a barbecue into a pizza oven, enabling higher temperatures than regular ovens for brick oven-style pizza or for reheating take out. It's $100 from Villaware .

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Especially important when cooking meats, these grilling tools feature a "kickstand" that keeps the head of the tool off the table ensuring that both your work surface and tools stay clean. The set of three includes a fork, tongs and a spatula, all with a soft but durable rosewood handle. I especially like the spatula, which features a serrated edge and a built-in bottle opener. The set is available for $40 here.

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The Pig Tail Food Flipper turns meat over on the grill with little more than a flick of the wrist. Also useful for pushing and to carry from grill to plate, the three-in-one tool eliminates the need for juggling different utensils. It's available in both right- and left-handed versions for $15 here.

Also on Cool Hunting the Monogrammed Steak Brand.

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