By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Thompson: Some prep keeps burgers from over-plumping
Placeholder Image

Here's a hamburger grilling tip that I bet you've never heard. Have you ever noticed that when grilling a hamburger it tends to plump in the middle? To avoid this, make an indentation in the center of the patty before you put it on the grill. The indentation should be around two inches in diameter and about half of the thickness of the burger.

Before grilling, apply a spray-on oil onto the cooking grate. This will keep your meats from sticking. If you forget to do this, don't despair. Get a bowl and pour some cooking oil into it. Using your tongs, grab a paper towel, dip it into the oil and then rub the grate with it. Spraying oil onto a fire can be dangerous.

If you like your liquor a little on the cool side, then you'll like the Whiskey Stones. The Whiskey Stones are ice cube substitutes - they're actually soapstones quarried from Perkinsville, Vt. Ice cubes dilute your drink and the hard water can leave a bad aftertaste. A set of eight stones costs around $20 and you can find them online; just Google the name.

If you travel a lot, you need to know about Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap. It's an all-in-one liquid soap that you can use for bathing, washing your hair, doing laundry, and even brushing your teeth. It's been around for over 60 years and is as popular as ever. You can find it at Bronner was a bit of a nut, but he made a great soap.

Tim Thompson lives in Gainesville. E-mail Tim your ideas for tips, tools or tricks.