I have decided that I am the only person on the planet that hates the George Foreman Grill. People are constantly talking about them (if I didn't sell gourmet food, maybe I wouldn't hear about them quite so much) and telling me how great they are. These same people make sure that I have one, or else my life would be sincerely lacking.
Well, I have one. I hate it. I think it is the most overrated kitchen appliance that I have ever owned (I also hate my waffle iron, so maybe that one beats it by just a hair). For starters, I have the oldest style grill. It's the small one that doesn't have a bun warmer or removable plates (which I see they have now). First of all, that "grease" that is dripping off of the food is not fat, it's the juice. That's the stuff that makes it nice and tender. Sure, even on an outdoor grill, you're going to get a certain amount of drippage of juices/grease, but the GFG purposely squishes the meat down so that it squeezes the juices out!!!! As a result, the chicken breasts that we had tonight were dry like they always are.
Secondly, the grooves in the top aren't as deep as the grooves on the bottom. So, the top of the meat is always hard and overbrowned. You can't control temperature, at least on my model - it's hot or off - so I end up with crispy top. And, people who say you can't burn something on the GFG or sorely mistaken. You can burn just the top or outside and leave the inside raw. I've done it - this is why I no longer cook chicken with bones on the GFG. Near the bone, the chicken is raw with a nice crusty brown on the outside.
I could probably live with this were it not for the cleaning. Cleaning this stupid thing is absolutely ridiculous. When you buy one, they give you this little comb thing that you're supposed to run down it to get the glop off of it. That sucker is useless and I frankly have no idea where ours is. I end up scrubbing the stupid thing with a sponge - by the time I've done this, I could have used a broiler pan. Even with the sponge, it's hard to get in between the really deep grooves at the bottom where it holds the meat on. I always feel like the GFG has a constant BBQ sauce smell no matter what I do - I never ever feel like I truly got it clean. Tonight, I tried lining the stupid thing with foil, which actually worked pretty well on the top, but the foil didn't quite cover the bottom and I ended up having to scrub parts of it anyway. Still, it was a bit more bearable.
Finally, and I know I'm the only person that's ever done this. It had gotten to the point where I don't mention that this happend to me because people laugh. I've tried to cook things on the grill and they just slide off onto the counter. I end up having to hold them with a fork while I throw the lid down to hold the chicken in place. Someone please tell me if this has happend to you so that I won't feel like such a freak.
Anyway, despite the fact that I hate it, I do use my GFG (just not for steak, which would ruin them, and not for anything with bones). Why do I use it? Well, I avoid it at all costs. Tonight, though, it was dark by the time I was making dinner and it was also raining. I didn't really want to go outside to use the grill in the rain with a flashlight. The broiler was also not an option. Sorry, but I tend to set off the smoke alarm when I broil things, so I avoid that as well. So, I sucked it up and used the stupid GFG. But I didn't enjoy it.