Last night was blackened haddock tacos on the @WeberGrills Go-Anywhere and @LodgeCastIron skillet at Niles Beach and it was GLORIOUS!

Glorious.   Living a mile away from your favorite beach is pretty sweet.

What makes it sweeter is hanging with some of your favorite people and cooking incredible food while your toes are still in the sand on that very same beach.

A little EVOO and Paul Prudhomme Blackened Fish Seasoning.  Cook it up on the Lodge Cast Iron skillet , toast the taco shells and add Kate’s awesome homemade slaw, avocado crema or my sriracha mayo or all that!

Heaven.

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The Charcoal @WeberGrills Go-Anywhere- Theorizing The Evolution Of Portable Charcoal Grilling From The Cast Iron Hibachi

The Weber Go-Anywhere has been around for a while.

Read this excellent post detailing the history of the Go-Anywhere on the Weber Kettle Club Website-

Weber GO Anywhere History

 

This history article was researched and put together by Weber Kettle Club forum member Neil_VT00

 

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If you look at the timeline, the rectangular portable Go-Anywhere was introduced in 1979 and not a whole lot has changed since then.

What I think is genius about it and how it advanced portable charcoal cooking was how it differentiated from the popularity of the open cast iron hibachi.

Cast iron hibachis were popular in the 60s.  They are heavy, they require maintenance to avoid rusting and they are open topped which limits the type of cooking to direct grilling.

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My guess is that the engineers that designed the Weber Charcoal Go-Anywhere took on all of these issues by making it out of their porcelain coated steel to avoid rust issues and be a whole lot lighter to transport.

The Lodge Sportsman Cast Iron Grill has roots dating back to 1941.  It’s heavy, it requires maintenance to keep from rusting and again, it does not have a lid.

I’m not saying they are not interesting or fun to cook on.  I’m just saying the Weber Go-Anywhere is a whole lot more versatile.

When you light up a bunch of coals on an open hibachi you need to be cognizant of factors such as wind and how much time you have. The coals don’t get snuffed out quickly as there is not lid or vents to regulate air needed to sustain the coals being lit.

Here’s my Lodge Sportsman grill/hibachi on action at the dock-

On the Go-Anywhere the legs flip up and lock the vented lid to the base making it easy to transport.  It can also be used to smoke on a small scale and regulate air flow with the vents on the bottom and in the lid.  With a traditional hibachi you’re pretty much limited to open grilling.

Here are a couple of the other cast iron hibachis that I’ve collected-

Queen Hibachi Japan

Cast Iron Bull Hibachi

Lodge Sportsman vs Weber Go-Anywhere: Pros and Cons

First off I should say that I don’t own a Lodge Sportsman although I’ve been wanting to cook on one.  The only thing that’s been holding me back from purchasing one is the lack of space and knowing that the cast iron construction would likely be completely rusted as I cook on my Weber’s all the time and the Sportsman wouldn’t get enough use to stay greasy and seasoned properly.

In this post I will attempt to point out perceived pros and cons vs a grill I know fairly well, the Weber Go-Anywhere.

Lodge Sportsman

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Weber Go-Anywhere

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If you own the Lodge Sportsman grill or Weber Go-Anywhere I’d love to hear your opinions on this review and how you agree or disagree.

One thing I’m interested in hearing about the Sportsman is if the bottom vent really controls the heat.  The entire top is open without a lid or top vents so it doesn’t seem to me like opening or closing the bottom vent on the Sportsman is going to have a dramatic effect on temps.

The Go-Anywhere and it’s porcelain are obviously much easier to clean than the cast iron Sportsman and less susceptible to rust.

The Go-Anywhere’s vents can be completely closed down to snuff out coals while the Sportsman you would need to find a way to safely remove and contain the coals before moving it around.

The Go-Anywhere’s legs that lock over the lid to keep the entire grill together for transporting make it easier than the Sportsman that tilts to one side when lifting by it’s handle.  The Go-Anywhere weighs much less making it more portable.

I’m guessing the Sportsman’s cast iron grates leave better sear marks than the Go-Anywhere.  The Go-anywhere can be used to smoke small amounts of food by adjusting the vents with it’s lid on while the Sportsman pretty much limits you to grilling or using it to cook with a cast iron pan on top.  The sport’s man does not have a lip along it’s top edge making it more even to put a cast iron pan on for cooking while the Go anywhere’s grate sits down in a groove which makes cast iron pan cooking on it doable but less even.

I know people that love their grills really love their grills.  I’m really interested to hear from Sportsman fans about what I might be missing or wrong about in this comparison.

Tell me some things that the Sportsman can do that I haven’t considered better than the Go-Anywhere.

Here’s cooking a revers sear steak and sausages on the Weber Go-Anywhere-

 

 

 

Stuffed and Breaded Chicken On The @WeberGrills Go-Anywhere

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Mix sour cream, parmesan cheese, basil paste, feta and sun dried tomatos for the stuffing.

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Roll 1/4 inch thick EVOO coated chicken breast (pound flat between two pieces of wax paper) around the stuffing, secure with toothpicks then coat with Italian bread crumbs.

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I used a deflector plate.  Under which I put a half a Weber chimney of lit coals on the opposite side of the grill where the chicken would go.  Vents all wide open.

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Cook for 25 minutes until chicken is golden brown.

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@WeberGrills Charcoal Go-Anywhere Indirect Chicken Wing Set-Up

This is how I set up my charcoal Weber Go-Anywhere for high heat indirect cooking.  Here we cook a full package of chicken wings offset the coals using tin foil and a foil tray to catch the drippings.

Link for the foil trays that fit perfectly inside the Go Anywhere at this link

(120 Pack) Premium 2-LB Takeout Pans with LIDS l Standard 8.6″ x 6.1″ x 2″ l Top Choice Aluminum Foil

Nancy Dudley Submits May 1983 Photo Of Fred Bodin With His @WeberGrills Go-Anywhere

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Hi Joey, I am enjoying your blogs as always and have attached a photo just for fun. It is a very old, moldy and underexposed kodachrome and I am not sending it for a blog post hopeful, just to accompany some info. I don’t know if you knew your old friend of blog Fred B. was nuts about Weber cookers. Around the end of the 1970’s or beginning of the 80’s he had a Smokey Joe and then discovered whatever the rectangular one is- ( sorry, I am not into grills). He referred to it as THE WEBER, all caps bold and italic whenever he spoke of it which was often and to whoever would listen. He would demonstrate not only it’s juicy but grilled cooking features, but his favorite feature the utter GENIUS legs which would fold up to lock on the lid, as well as how it’s shape made it great for packing his van for camping trips. The list goes on. Anyway. I hope you get a chuckle out of this photo he insisted on having taken with THE WEBER. Raise a glass at the next griller meet!
cheers Nancy Dudley, Essex

Fred not long before he passed-

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Himalayan Salt Block Seared Scallops On The @WeberGrills Go-Anywhere

First thing to do is spread one layer of unlit coals on the charcoal grate under the area that you will be placing the salt block.

The producers of these blocks suggest you gradually bring them up to temp so instead of dumping a half chimney of coals and placing the block down, light about 12 coals and evenly disperse the lit coals over the bed of unlit ones.

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Next place the cooking grate and place your salt block on top of that over the coals.

Let the ulit coals catch up and heat the salt block until it gets to a temp when you can barely hold your hand over the block for a couple of seconds or if you drizzle a drop of water it immediately sizzles.

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The key to getting a good sear on your scallops is to pat them dry and don’t add seasonings until  just before you’re going to put them on the block.

I drizzled a little EVOO, very little Lowry’s seasoned salt and some crushed black pepper.

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Once the block is heated to the point your water drop will sizzle right up, you place your scallops flat side down for roughly 3 minutes per side.

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It doesn’t get much easier than that my friends.

Goes great over a citrusy salad or just the way they are.  You can’t go wrong with seared scallops in my book.

Thanks Jess Brand  and Foster’s Grill Store!

 

Technique for perfectly cooked steaks on the @WeberGrills Go-Anywhere

Perfect grill for reverse searing a couple strip steaks.

What I’ve learned in grilling steaks is that it’s not necessary to sear the fuck out of them right from the get go. In fact the steaks don’t have to be on the grates from start to finish. Best results having the coals to one side, vents half way open and let thick cut steaks come up to about 20 degrees from desired temp offset the coals then take the steak completely off the grill for at least five minutes. Open all the vents get the coals glowing and then place them back on the grill over the coals. Criss cross hash marks and probing with instant read thermometer til 5 degrees from desired temp. Rest again. Done perfectly.