It’s right about now, when winter really starts to drag, that we start reminiscing about backyard barbecues and the grilled recipes that go along with them. Luckily, though, as we count down the days until summer, there are plenty of ways to achieve charred texture and smokey flavor indoors.
A high-heat blast from your broiler or a even pan-searing in a hot skillet make great stand-ins for the grill, recreating those sought-after summer flavors year-round. That means ultra-tender ribs, burgers, charred vegetables and skewered meats regardless of what the weather looks like. Because it'll still be a while until we're ready to dust off the grill.
In Singapore, satay—thin strips of boldly seasoned and skewered meat—is cooked quickly over long beds of hot coals, flipped frequently to ensure even cooking and charred edges. For our indoor version, the high heat of the broiler allows the chicken to develop the flavors that define the dish.
For our weeknight version of this traditionally spit-roasted street food, we broil pork tenderloin that has been pounded and briefly marinated in a pineapple-chipotle chili puree, which later becomes a salsa. For some extra color and crunch, finely shredded red cabbage for sprinkling.
We simplified this traditionally grilled chicken by opting for a medium-high oven roast of 400°F. Chicken leg quarters and breasts are easy to buy at the grocer, but breaking down a whole chicken works just as well. The hardest part of this recipe will be deciding whether to pair it with tangy tamarind or chili-lime dipping sauce.
No slow-smoking here. Instead of barbecue pulled pork, this miso and gochujang version, inspired by a sandwich from Sydney’s Bird & Ewe, calls for oven-braising pork butt. The miso and gochujang provide deep, savory-sweet notes and complex flavor for this epic sandwich, topped with quick-pickled carrots, sliced pickled jalapeños and gochujang-spiked sour cream. We can’t get enough of it.
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In Tel Aviv, we found that high heat was all it took to transform simple eggplant. We like serving the eggplant in its charred skins, but the cooked flesh also can be scooped into a bowl, mashed and mixed with the herb mixture, then finished with olive oil and lemon juice. The technique works just as well under the broiler as it does on the grill. Broil about 10 minutes, then turn the oven down to roast at 475°F for 30-40 minutes.
In Tuscany, rosticciana is cooked on the grill and served with other meats, such and steak and sausage. In our take, we focused on the ribs and brought them indoors, using a simple trick to create a steamy environment in the oven that yields tender ribs with a flavorful browned crust.
We make our Beef Suya, a ubiquitous grilled street snack in Nigeria, on the grill or under the broiler by charringthe skewers about five minutes on a wire rack set in a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet on the upper-most rack.Salting the beef and letting it sit before applying a peanut-spice paste allows the seasoning to better penetrate the meat. We like serving the suya with cucumber, tomato, cabbage and onion—cooling counterparts to the salty, piquant beef.
Salmoriglio, both a sauce and marinade from southern Italy, is made with extra-virgin olive oil, lemon, garlic and herbs. In our version, we used grated zest in the mixture for marinating the chicken, then add lemon juice to finish the sauce just before serving. This keeps the chicken tasting fresh and bright. The whole thing works just as well in the oven as it does on the grill. Find roasting instructions at the bottom of then recipe.
Take your burgers indoors with these deeply savory patties, basted with a mixture of garlic, rosemary and salty, umami-rich Worcestershire sauce. As for the toppings, our equally rich, two-ingredient taleggio cheese sauce, balanced by sharp, acidic pickled red onions, are a must.
You don’t need a backyard smoker for smoky ribs. For tender meat and a sticky glaze, we slow cook ribs on baking sheets wrapped with heavy-duty foil before raising the temperature and finishing them unwrapped. A thick, flavorful paste made with aromatics, honey and a handful of staple Asian ingredients acts as both the marinade and the base of the sticky, sweet and savory glaze.
Street vendors in China sell these sizzling skewers hot off the grill, rich with cumin and chilies. We make ours on the grill or under the broiler, and you’ll find instructions for the latter at the bottom of this recipe. A portion of the spice mixture—think toasted cumin, fennel and Sichuan peppercorns—goes onto the beef just before cooking. The rest is sprinkled on at the end. Though these skewers are typically enjoyed as a snack, they become a satisfying dinner when served with stir-fried vegetables.
This recipe uses the gentle, controlled heat of the oven to replicate the “reverse sear” technique Argentinians use when grilling beef. The steaks start in a cool oven and finish with a quick sear in a blistering-hot cast-iron skillet. You can halve the chimichurri, but if you're like us, you'll find other uses for this delicious condiment.