Searing on a MAK grill, owner observations and question
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Searing on a MAK grill, owner observations and question
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Thread: Searing on a MAK grill, owner observations and question

  1. #1

    Searing on a MAK grill, owner observations and question

    My new MAK 2 Star has been a phenomenal edition... except for one minor drawback: searing.

    I cooked some chicken breasts with skin at about 300. I took them off the grill and placed them in the cold smoker. I then turned up the MAK to "High", placed in the MAK searing grate, and waited for it to hit 450. On the other side of the grill, I placed in my cast iron 12" skillet.

    Once the grill hit 450, I put two chicken breasts, skin down, on the searing grate. I also placed two chicken breasts, skin down, on the cast iron.

    The searing difference wasn't even close. The cast iron, with its flat surface, did a much more thorough job of searing than the MAK searing grate. The searing grate produced great grill marks, but I prefer a consistent browning throughout the skin. I moved the chicken around on the MAK searing grate, but it wasn't as thorough (obviously with it being a grate and not a flat surface). This is not to mention the 10 minutes or so it took for the grill to heat up to 450 from 300.

    I'm almost tempted to just forget the MAK searing grate and sear my steaks, chicken breasts, etc. inside on the stovetop. I can heat that up in parallel when I wait for my chicken to finish on the MAK. No waiting for the MAK to heat up, and better results to boot!

    Does anyone have any experience with the MAK griddle? Does it produce similar, consistent searing as a cast iron pan would? Also, does anyone have any advice for me in terms of searing on the MAK? Perhaps I should remove even the FlameZone pan to sear directly over the flame??? Would this give better results using the MAK searing grate?


    John

  2. #2
    I also found the 10 minute plus wait for the temperature to rise when searing a little long. I was reverse searing ribeyes, moved my steaks to the warming box, and put the MAK searing grate on. I was pleased with the results but next time I will have my gas grill going and will finish searing using my Grill Grates. As for the MAK griddle, I used it to cook some bison burgers and they turned out just as they would on a cast iron flat surface.
    2016 MAK 2 Star #2817~Remote Boss

  3. #3
    I have yet to see an open flame on the MAK without removing the "FlameZone" pan. I've seen several videos of competitors such as Yoder, where you can clearly see a flame shooting up and searing the meat. I am turning the heat up to HIGH. Am I missing something?

  4. #4
    The MAK is not designed to have the fire coming in direct contact with the food because the food would be on fire as well.
    Beauty of a pellet grill is it drastically reduces the risk of your steaks being on fire (think gas grill) vs. grilled with direct heat minimizing flare-ups. The flame zone pan opens the surface under the food to direct heat from the fire vs. diverting it around the food when you have it covered for smoking low and slow.

    Hope this answers your questions, enjoy getting to know your new MAK and how it will cook different than all your other grills.
    Superior Wood Pellet BBQ Smoker Grills!
    www.makgrills.com

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by MAK DADDY View Post
    The MAK is not designed to have the fire coming in direct contact with the food because the food would be on fire as well.
    Beauty of a pellet grill is it drastically reduces the risk of your steaks being on fire (think gas grill) vs. grilled with direct heat minimizing flare-ups. The flame zone pan opens the surface under the food to direct heat from the fire vs. diverting it around the food when you have it covered for smoking low and slow.

    Hope this answers your questions, enjoy getting to know your new MAK and how it will cook different than all your other grills.

    Thanks for the response! I guess I was expecting the MAK to be a silver bullet. I don't have any other grills! I think for most things the searing the MAK provides is sufficient. I'm a perfectionist unfortunately.

    John

  6. #6
    No problem, we are too
    Half the fun is learning new ways to cook with pellets and there are a lot of great examples on this site!
    For me, when cooking chicken with skin (including whole) I cover the flame zone and cook at 400 degrees, this gets the skin golden brown. When cooking chicken breast without skin I open the flame zone and cook at 450 (hot and fast so it doesn't dry out).
    Million ways to do it, find what you like the best and experiment.
    Superior Wood Pellet BBQ Smoker Grills!
    www.makgrills.com

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by rogersjd14
    Does anyone have any experience with the MAK griddle? Does it produce similar, consistent searing as a cast iron pan would?
    Yes, it works very well for an overall sear. That MAK griddle can get pretty blasted hot, especially if you place it over top the FlameZone without covers.



    Overall, it really depends on what you're cooking and what you want. For times when I want an overall sear, then it doesn't make sense to use the searing grate. I either sear indoors on a cast iron skillet (just like you mentioned) or I will use the MAK Griddle.

    When I just want to grill a steak, burgers, chops etc. and want to get the typical grill marks, then I use the MAK Searing grate.
    <><
    MAK 1 Star General #651 - 2014 Model
    former owner - MAK 1 Star General #171
    22.5" Weber Performer with Stoven Pellet Grill attachment
    27 + year old 22.5" Weber Kettle (still works fine)
    Modified Horizontal Offset Smoker - used mainly for cold smoking.

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