MEATWATCH: Becoming Grillpilled

MEATWATCH

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Look, we know what you’re thinking: This is by far one of our worst pun-based ideas. But Greg gets real pissy if we don’t let him just go to town roasting something, both literally and figuratively, every thirty days or so. And so we present our guide to Becoming Grillpilled, and the Outer Sirloin.

GREGNOTE: We have assumed direct control of the Posting Meta – no longer will Meatwatch find itself beholden to the whims of Warhammer Community’s Metawatch column, and instead publish roughly at the end of the month regardless. Your move, cowards.

I haven’t felt like myself for a while. Though at some point it’s fair to wonder whether this actually is myself, just a newer and somewhat more shambling version, and the change was so gradual I didn’t notice it happening. There’s a lot of that going around lately. Our ambitions have been hemmed in, and by turning inward we’re all discovering new things about ourselves, that can be good (really into Mobile Suit Gundam) or bad (slowly losing my mind, unable to brain good). Actions become habits, which become internalized, and then that’s Just The Way Things Are. First you play a little bit of 40k, then you identify as a 40k player, and next thing you know you’re doing hobby activities (Posting) 15 hours a day.

The analogy I’ve seen before is a puzzle – swap a few pieces at a time, eventually the whole picture changes – but since this is Meatwatch, I’d rather think of it as a recipe. I’m notorious for either not using one at all, or referring to it as a rough guide while ignoring all of the ingredients and measurements, making my own decisions about how long to cook how much of which foods. This drives my wife insane.

My philosophy is that if you go off-book, you’re still making a version of the thing you set out to make, just not the exact one specified. Which is fine because there’s no canonical definition, no Platonic ideal, of “food”. There’s not a right or wrong way to do this, and it seems nuts to think about it that way. Run out of smoked paprika for your spice rub, and have to use regular? Out of regular, and have to use fuckin…Old Bay or something? Whatever man, it’s still ribs, just a different kind of ribs. I made kebabs the other day, which whipped ass, and just impaled random bits of vegetables between the chicken. Oh, we don’t have enough onions? I guess there’s going to be less onion, then. No sense worrying about it.

There’s a limit to this, where it really does become a different dish, and there’s no hard delimiter for when that is – you change up beef stew hard enough and it eventually becomes chili, which can be a serviceable outcome even if it wasn’t the intent, unless it becomes inedible garbage, which is ah, suboptimal. I like doing this, though I’ve yet to figure out why. If we’re being charitable, we can say that I like to be creative, that my Vibes are simply too Wild, unable to be constrained by the rules of gods or men. A more realistic view is probably that I’m sloppy and don’t like being told what to do. 

Opportunities to let your figurative hair down are scarce right now, but given that it’s now summer, if we want to talk about decisions to fuck around, perchance to find out, we have to talk about Action Park. There’s a documentary from last year on HBOMax, Class Action Park, and: it owns. The business model was simple, but groundbreaking: let kids go hog wild on waterslides designed by amateurs with no engineering knowledge, tested through brutal trial and error, and without regular maintenance or adult supervision. The flagrant disregard for safety was a real paradigm shift, changed the whole game up. Also the park had to buy an ambulance and hire their own EMTs, because the emergency services in the town couldn’t keep up with the steady stream of injuries.

In the new documentary canon of wild shit from the 80s that I am somehow just now hearing about despite being alive when the events happened, Class Action Park is cooler and more batshit than This is a Robbery or Murder Among the Mormons, but doesn’t quite hit the same highs of Wild Wild Country. I still recommend watching it, for Chris Gethard’s borderline triumphant stance on surviving the park, if nothing else.

I was a couple of years too young, and a hundred miles too far away, with parents perhaps not quite negligent enough, to experience this first-hand. A near miss, on a cosmic scale, but still a miss. I don’t know if I would have played any of the most dangerous games if I had gone – not that anyone really knew where the danger lay, since the park’s owner (allegedly) did a lot of work and paid off a lot of regulators to prevent that information from getting out. Oh, and the re-branded park, despite being under new ownership, recently caught fire. That kind of curse is a tough one to shake.

I don’t mean to romanticize Action Park – multiple children died, and the park’s only interest was making money, without informed consent from patrons, or concern for their safety – but there is something strangely appealing about the lawlessness of it all. If I put myself in the mindset of that coolest demographic, the disrespectful teen, I can certainly see the draw, in today’s somewhat anodyne worlds of both child-rearing and entertainment, of being allowed to put yourself in actual physical danger, swinging (in some cases literally) without a safety net, without condoning the Theranos of injuring kids. I say this, but I’m also never more than three feet away from my phone, and I use the damn thing for GPS directions when driving to places I’ve been a dozen times before, check movie ratings before I watch anything, and re-confirm meat temperature ranges I should have memorized by now. I text my wife before I leave for something, and again after I arrive, so it’s certainly possible that I’m a hypocrite. “Man too frightened to pick up take-out extolls the virtues of breaking your legs on a log flume“ is maybe not the most ideologically consistent Take anyone’s ever had.

The closest I’ll come to risking life and limb is to apply sunscreen, climb up the stairs to my roof with its up-to-code deck and railing, fire up the grill, and start playing with carefully managed propane-sourced fire, in a safe and ventilated area, while staying well away from the precipice and practicing food safety measures to prevent cross-contamination. It’s all very legal, and very cool.

The Outer Sirloin

Look, nobody needs another recipe blog, and I didn’t intend for Meatwatch to become one, but Patrons keep having ideas, and they’re good ideas, and there’s only so much I can do. I never meant for this place to turn into another place for your up-jumped hack author to ramble for ten paragraphs before you get to the recipe. It was supposed to just be the editorializing, with no payoff at the end whatsoever. That was the Bit.

This one works though, because I like the name and it comes with a free model. Here’s Goonhammer Patron Joe (he/him) with his Deathwatch Grillmaster, who is now the official mascot of Meatwatch.

The idea for the Deathwatch Grill Master came from a late night voice chat session with Norman, a friend and fellow hobbyist, after one of the recent Meatwatch articles came out. It started out as us just riffing on the theme of “what if the Deathwatch was the Meatwatch.” We sat there for a good thirty minutes cracking ourselves up at the idea of a Grill Master who leads an elite force of Meatwatch Grill Teams into battle from Watch Fortress Flavortown, swinging their Thunder Tenderizers and following the Codex Asada as they hunt down Heiros, Hive Guard, and Hormogaunts. Deathwatch was the army that got me into the hobby and I really enjoy painting them, so I figured it might be fun to make him a reality. My wife was kind enough to indulge my silliness and make a chef hat and an apron out of sculpting clay. I found a keychain charm online that I could use for his trusty Vigil Spatula, cut a few spare inceptor bits into sausages, and added straps to the apron with a bit of green stuff. A salamanders flame transfer for the shoulder pad felt appropriate but I also wanted something on the apron for maximum Dad energy and couldn’t find anything in the official GW transfer range that felt quite right, so I got some waterslide decal paper and printed my own (it’s surprisingly easy!) – and Grill Master Kebab Mac Thull was born.

Meatwatch Grillmaster. Credit: Joe

Along with that, Joe sent his tri-tip recipe, which honestly sounds like it bangs but I haven’t made it, so don’t listen to me. Here’s Joe again.

And They Shall Forego No Sear

  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce 
  • 1/4 cup Chinese black vinegar (JOENOTE: I usually use white wine or rice vinegar and balsamic, with some water. about 3 parts water to 1 part rice vinegar and 1 part balsamic IIRC is what I normally do. I literally just take a 1/4 cup measure and fill it a bit more than halfway with water then top it off with equal parts rice vinegar and balsamic)
  • 1/4 cup firmly-packed brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried parsley
  • 1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Place all ingredients in a bag. 

Trim excess fat from two 3-lb. tri-tips. Arrange the two triangular roasts into a rectangle, and carefully place them in a bag.  Press out excess air, and seal. Lay flat in the fridge and marinate 24-36 hours, turning every 12 hours. 

Prepare a charcoal grill (or heat a gas grill to high). Place the roast on a grill and sear one side well, 6 to 8 minutes, checking for flare-ups. Turn the roast and sear the other side for about the same time. Then move the meat to a cooler part of the charcoal grill (or lower the gas to medium-high). Turn meat again, and cook for another 8 to 10 minutes. Flip, and cook again. 

A 3-pound roast will require about 25 to 30 minutes total cooking time. For best results put on some music while cooking – but be careful not to expose the meat to any terrible albums, like Metallica’s St. Anger. The roast is ready when an instant-read thermometer reaches 130 degrees when inserted into the thickest part of the meat.

If you have yet to take the grill pill, oven instructions are also provided:

Preheat oven to 375. Place meat on a rack or shallow pan lined with foil, and roast for 45 minutes.  If using a convection oven, preheat to 350 using the “convection roast” option and roast ~40 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer reads ~135 degrees at the thickest part. 

Regardless of grill or oven type, let it sit 15 minutes before slicing, and always cut against the grain.

Thanks for sticking around, and making this column what it is: a little-read corner of this website that exists solely for me to waste your time and get yelled at. If you have questions or comments, let us know at contact@goonhammer.com, or right here in the comments. Meatwatch is here to help.