After 10 amazing years with my Weber Genesis gas grill, I bought my Grill Dome Komodo Style charcoal grill in 2009. I was an instant convert to charcoal: I immediately fell in love with cooking over the hot and flavorful coals, and used my grill several times a week. However, I learned some lessons the hard way. If you have too much smoke rolling for your first pizza, your family will not fall in love with your cooking! Plus, several times within the first couple months, I had a hard time getting a fire started. After trying different levels of charcoal in the cooker, I talked to my buddy at the local BBQ shop. He told me that I needed to make sure I cleared out all of the ash so the leftover charcoal could breathe.
With that advice (and my background in "gotta make things better," a.k.a. engineering), I wondered why I couldn't put some kind of perforated bucket or basket in the bottom of the grill to hold the charcoal. That way I could just lift the whole batch of cold charcoal and shake the ash out. This would help the remaining charcoal breathe and make starting the fire a lot quicker and easier. I searched the Internet for a charcoal basket to purchase, but found none. So I decided to build my own.
I made the first basket from 16-gauge expanded metal, coat hanger wire, and some amateur welding. It worked awesome and I used that basket for well over a year, cooking two to three times per week. I showed this idea to a couple of buddies who had Big Green Egg charcoal grills and they immediately said, "That's a great idea! When can I get one?!"
And that's how the Kick Ash Basket was born! It is now available for purchase from right here at KickAshBasket.com.
Shake That Ash & Light That Fire!