Grill Presses

From America's Test Kitchen Season 10: The Italian Grill

Overview:

The key to preparing the Sicilian classic pollo al mattone—chicken under a brick—is the brick itself. The weight (we used two 6-pounders wrapped in foil) holds the bird flat on the grill, helping the chicken to cook faster and the fat to render for crisp, golden skin. Do cast-iron grill presses do the job any better? We tested four brands, at prices from $14.99 to a whopping $70. Presses that were too light or small left the skin flabby and boosted cooking time. We preferred the heftiest model for its comfortable handle and nearly 5 pounds of chicken-pressing weight. But at $27.95, we can’t recommend it over bricks, which cost 35 cents apiece.

The key to preparing the Sicilian classic pollo al mattone—chicken under a brick—is the brick itself. The weight (we used two 6-pounders wrapped in foil) holds the bird flat on the grill, helping the chicken to cook faster and the fat to render for crisp, golden skin. Do cast-iron grill presses do the job any better? We tested four brands, at prices from $14.99 to a whopping $70. Presses that were too light or small left the skin flabby and boosted cooking time. We preferred the heftiest model for its comfortable handle and nearly 5 pounds of chicken-pressing weight. But at $27.95, we can’t recommend it over bricks, which cost 35 cents apiece.

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