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Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

Adventures in Grilling

Posted July 5, 2007 7:26 a.m. EDT
Updated July 5, 2007 7:28 a.m. EDT


Have you ever opened the lid to your backyard grill and found a surprise? I did a month or so ago.

It was one of those perfect evenings: light breeze, low humidity, golden sun going down. My platter was full of succulent salmon marinading in a delicious lime and herb sauce. In another dish I carried asparagus coated with olive oil and spices. They were to be grilled as well. Oh, what a wonderful feast we would have in just a few minutes.

I really enjoy grilling out. Two days earlier we tried a new burger recipe with lots of different spices. They were a great hit with the family.

Usually I’m good about cleaning the grill, letting the flame burn off the grease and then cleaning with a brush. But it was getting late when I had cooked the burgers and my bedtime is 7:45PM because of my 2:35AM wake up for the morning news. So I vowed to clean the grill the next day.

Well, I forgot.

So, when I opened the grill to begin cooking the salmon and asparagus I found a young possum who had squeezed through one of the ventilation holes on the grill lid. The possum was smiling at me with grease stains all over his snout. You would expect an animal to jump and run. Not this possum. He was living large and he wasn't going anywhere. A forced evacuation was needed, however. A nudge from a broom handle did the trick.

The incident spoiled everyone's appetite for grilled salmon and asparagus that beautiful evening.

This week I bought a new grill. The ventilation holes are smaller. This grill is officially possom proof.

But I did clean it well after grilling for July 4th. I wouldn't want to attract any smaller furry friends.

What about your grilling adventures?  Please share.