GardenFood + DrinkReview
Plug-in BBQ – we put the Weber Pulse 2000 to the test
The Weber Pulse series is supposed to take barbecuing on an electric grill to a whole new level. Thanks to high temperatures, your food is said to taste as good as if you’d used a charcoal or gas grill. We wanted to know if the BBQ delivered or if it was just hot air.
Looking out the window, we’re pleased to see the sun has just come out and the deep blue sky is only disturbed by a few white cotton wool clouds. Perfect barbecuing weather. Senior category marketing manager Stefanie Voigt has a Weber Pulse 2000 collecting dust in her basement, waiting patiently to be fired up. We grab a few more people from the garden team and head round to Steffi’s place.
Ready to use in a jiffy
The Weber Pulse 2000 is a smart electric grill that’s been developed for city living. It’s apparently compact enough to fit on any balcony. We open the box and are indeed met with a relatively small barbecue. It also comes with a digital display temperature control, cast-iron cooking grates, temperature probe, a boiler lining and a grease tray. There is also supposed to be a stand but that was too big for the big balcony.
The Weber Grill is quick to assemble. Sit each bit on top of the next and you’re good to go. Time to stick it on at full whack to burn away any industrial residue. It’s now up at almost 300 degrees Celsius. We’re got nothing better to do than sit about waiting, so we download the Weber iGrill app. You’ll need it for smart barbecuing with temperature monitoring. You’ll find there’s a large variety of meat and fish to choose from. All you do is press a button and stick a temperature probe into the meat while it’s cooking. We opted for chicken and salmon.
It gets straight down to business
Finally, we can start barbecuing. The appliance has reached its maximum temperature and is now a bit cooler – about 250 degrees Celsius. We put the meat and fish on. And goodness, you certainly know once stuff is cooking. The BBQ bursts into life, sizzling and spluttering. At first the food looks to be slightly stuck to the grate but once we flip it over everything seems fine.
One thing: don’t be fooled by its compact size. You can easily fit a couple of sausages, skewers and whole pieces of meat or fish on the grate.
Surprise surprise, the sausages are ready first – some things don’t change even with an electric barbecue. The cervelat has a light crust and the ends have curled up. So far so good. But that wasn’t even the main challenge. I’m more excited about the chicken breast.
No sooner had that thought crossed my mind than my phone was beeping, telling me the core temperature had been reached. Time to take the chicken off the grate, pop it on a plate and dig right in. And believe it or not, the chicken is done all the way through without being dry. If we’d only seasoned it a bit more it would have been perfect.
We’ve also got salmon cooking on a cedar plank. Can you really smoke on an electric BBQ? Surely it doesn’t work without actual smoke? If that’s what you were thinking, I can confirm you’re not wrong there. But the plank does give off a delicious smell and hopefully it’ll lend the fish a smokey flavour.
Oh no, we’ve got a problem. The app has lost Bluetooth connection with the salmon because we’re about four metres away from the barbecue. I’m not entirely sure if we’re just unlucky or if it’s always like that. Fingers crossed it’s just a coincidence, as it’s not like we’ve gone miles away.
The app starts up again and we can see the salmon on it. Phew! A few minutes later, the mobile emits another alert signal. Now the fish is cooked as well. From the outside, it seems rather promising. But does it taste as good as it looks? Yip, and it falls apart nicely. Not bad, Weber, not bad.
Did the BBQ live up to its promise?
Indeed it did. The Weber Pulse 2000 isn’t to be sneezed at. Sausages, chicken, fish and grilled cheese all cooked well on this urban beast. Crispy on the outside and hot and succulent on the inside – just as it should be. No one was turning up their nose or pushing food about their plate.
In terms of equipment, the temperature probe worked like a dream and cooked our food to perfection. We didn’t even have to put up with long waiting times in spite of burnout. The barbecue comes up to temperature quickly and maintains its heat, too. All in all, I’d say our BBQ experience was a success. I can wholeheartedly recommend this piece of kit, especially if you have a balcony or patio.
Now here’s the real clincher. Would I buy this barbecue myself? No, but that’s because of the price and not in any way linked to quality. At almost 1,000 francs, the BBQ would be by far the most expensive thing in my flat. Also, my my block of flats has quite a big garden no one uses, so barbecuing with charcoal isn’t an issue. That way does take a bit longer, but I kind of like waiting for my grub. When you’re sprawled out in the sun with a belly full of drinks and snacks and the smell of half a rosemary bush on charcoal tantalising your nostrils, you’re not exactly clock-watching.
Pulse 2000 (Android, iOS, 2.20kW)
The electric revolution in grilling!
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