El Pollo Loco brought the Asado culture to life with a one-of-a-kind, behind-the-grill experience . To celebrate Father’s Day they honored dads and their passion for grilling by offering a Grill Master for a cooking class in East Hollywood.
EL POLLO LOCO GRILLING TIPS:
- Start with a clean slate. Before you get cooking, you’re going to need one thing: a clean grill. Take a few minutes to remove any debris. (We know it’s tedious, but just think of how much better your pollo will taste after.) Once you’re done wiping things down, spray the rack with nonstick cooking spray or brush it with oil – your call.
- Bring on the heat. A little preheating can go a long way. So before you toss anything on the grill, be sure to preheat it on medium/high for 10-15 minutes. This prevents sticking, overcooking, and even gives you those picture-perfect grill marks (your Instagram will thank you later – and so will your taste buds).
- Managing the flame is an art. Once your grill is preheated, take it down a notch to your desired temperature. The more you get to know your grill, the more you’ll master the art of the flame. As a general rule, a hot grill brings out the best flavor and character in quick-cooking cuts (such as skinless, boneless breasts), but longer-cooking cuts (such as bone-in chicken parts) should be grilled over a lower heat.
- Watch seasonings carefully. Seasonings: so delicious, yet so tricky. When in doubt, go easy with them. You don’t want to damage fibers when you apply the rub and you definitely don’t want to overshadow the natural flavors of the pollo. Most marinades and basting sauces burn if the grill is too hot or if they’re exposed to heat for too long (we blame it on their high sugar content), so your best bet is to apply them when your chicken is just about done.
- Be patient. You know how they say a watched pot never boils? Well, chicken’s kind of like that. It takes about an hour to cook from start to finish, so give the grill time to work its magic. Turn and rotate the chicken with care, like all great Grill Masters do, making sure to never poke, tear, or break the surface of the pollo. And to give it just the right balance of juicy, flavorful meat and perfectly crispy skin, use different levels of heat at every stage. Knowing and understanding the hot spots on the grill is the key to serving legendary chicken.
- Test before serving. To get the pollo just right, you’re going to want to keep a meat thermometer handy. It’s your grilling secret weapon and the key to reaching a safe internal temperature of 165 degrees in the chicken’s thickest areas. Checking is easy – simply cut the underside of the thickest piece and if the meat looks pink, leave it on the grill for a couple more minutes until it’s white. Then, go ahead and dig in.
Fotos: Kelly Landaverde