Masport SS4 is an outdoor gas grill for preparing various barbecue dishes.
Barbecue is a style and method of cooking meat and other meals on a wire rack using coal, gas or electricity outdoors and with friends. Of course, there is also a special barbecue sauce for seasoning cooked meals.
The grill is supplied as separate components in a bulky cardboard box, so before using it you will have to spend a decent amount of time to assemble it and bring it into working condition.
Actually, there is nothing complicated in the assembly process, you just need to follow the instructions and tighten the screws in the right places. All important elements are supplied assembled.
The cabinet with doors, which acts as a base for the grill, is mounted on rather large wheels with stoppers for easy transport.
The grill is intended for outdoor use only, but it is recommended to protect it from the elements, so it can be installed under a canopy.
Masport SS4 is the most expensive grill currently supplied.. A quick comparison with competing solutions shows that the price for a grill looks at least reasonable.
All parts of the grill body are made of AISI 304 stainless steel, which is acid-resistant and can withstand temperatures up to 900 ° C for a short time. This steel grade is used for catering equipment. The lid has a viewing glass through which it is convenient to control the cooking process. When the lid is closed, the grill is an oven. Obviously, when you open the grill lid, there is a loss of heat and a drop in temperature. The presence of glass in the lid allows you to open it less often, which means that dishes are cooked faster.
A thermometer is built into the glass of the lid, which allows you to control the temperature during cooking. However, in some cases this method of temperature control may not be enough, for example, when a certain steak is required. If you like medium rare, then you should find funds and buy a thermometer with an external probe.
The standard delivery of the grill includes a grate and a hob (plate) made of high quality cast iron. After the stainless steel burners, these are perhaps the most valuable parts of the device.
It would be appropriate here to briefly talk about the manufacturer. Masport is originally from New Zealand, where it has a leading position in the garden and outdoor sector. Masport Limited traces its history back to City Engineering Ltd, founded in 1910 in Auckland. Then in 1915 the name changed to Mason and Porter Ltd. Actually, the modern name of the company is formed from the names of the founders’ heirs – Reuben Porter and Harold Mason. The name Masport Ltd appeared only in 1984. So, back in 1911, the City Engineering Ltd iron foundry began work, where vacuum pumps and engines for agricultural machinery were produced.
In 2017 Masport Ltd became part of the international Al-Ko holding headquartered in Germany. The range presented on our market includes models that are cheaper than the older SS4.
Returning to our gas grill, in which, according to the user manual, it is allowed to use a cast iron hob with an area of no more than 66% of the total. Actually, in the kit we have a hob for half the area.
It is important to remember that special heat exchange trays must be installed over stainless steel burners. Their special shape protects the burners from dripping grease and other liquids generated by cooking over the fire. Some of the liquids will evaporate on the heat exchange trays, rising up in smoke and soaking the dish, giving it that very barbecue flavor.
So, if you plan to cook on a cast-iron hob, then the heat exchange trays above the burners under this stove must be removed. If you are cooking on a cast iron grate, then heat exchange trays must be installed.
A cast iron hob is smooth on one side and grooved on the other. The user can select the desired side for cooking, which requires a high temperature with a short cooking time. These can be vegetables, eggs, seafood, bacon, or just small pieces of meat that cannot be cooked on the wire rack because of the risk that they will fall through the cracks.
You can close the grill lid while cooking, thus creating an oven or oven effect. When the lid is closed, the temperature rises quickly inside, so do not forget to shut off the gas supply using the regulators. With the lid closed, it is good to bake large pieces of meat or whole chicken.
The grill has four gas burners made of AISI 304 stainless steel. There is also an external burner for cooking in saucepans or pans – for example, sauces, saltwort or paella.
This hotplate is on the left; when not in use, it is covered with a lid, and the user receives a work surface for placing ingredients or ready meals.
Gas control handles – large diameter with rubberized strip for a comfortable grip.
Each handle is located opposite the burner, and the “washer” for operating the side burner is located between the two on the left.
All burners are equipped with an integrated electronic ignition system. To turn on the burners, you need to drown the control knob and turn it counterclockwise, gas starts flowing and the ignition spark is automatically applied.
All control knobs have a built-in blue LED backlight. It is turned on with a separate button, and it receives power from a block of four AA batteries.
Note that the grill heats up less at the edges of the perimeter than in the middle – this is done for the user’s safety. Just keep this in mind when grilling.
Using a cast iron grate, you can easily barbecue chicken wings. Of course, we haven’t forgotten the traditional burger patties, various types of sausages and meats.
There is space on the right side of the grill for a stainless steel container with a cutting board.
This is also standard equipment. The container can be used to store ingredients for preparation or add ice to cool drinks.
By the way, there is an opener for bottle caps on the right side of the grill cabinet. A trifle, but nice.
There is a place under the grill lid to install a complete stainless steel shelf.
It can be used to reheat burger buns or just keep the food warm. If installed, it makes it difficult to access the back of the grill, so it should be removed if not needed during cooking.
To use your grill, you need a LPG cylinder. If it is not on the farm, you will have to purchase it. The filled cylinder should be connected to the grill with a complete hose. A small bottle can be installed in a cabinet under the grill, there is a special recess for this.
But the diameter of the hole for the cylinder is such that only small steel cylinders can be installed there. Fiberglass composite cylinders are all the same diameter, but different heights and volumes. Such cylinders are more expensive than steel options, but they weigh several times less, are safe and have an almost unlimited service life. Another bonus of the composite option is the translucent walls, which allows you to visually determine how much gas is still inside.
You can store all kinds of accessories or utensils in the cabinet under the grill.
The set includes an all-weather Oxford fabric cover (matting) that protects the grill from precipitation and ultraviolet radiation. However, after a month of operation, our cover from black turned dark blue, and in one place the seam line parted.
The cover is made with a margin of size, so even a large composite gas cylinder, which is outside, and not in a cabinet, is also covered with a cover.
Some parts of the grill get quite hot during operation, so do not touch them without heat-resistant gloves.
The manufacturer offers a number of options for grilling. Some of them seemed to us uniquely useful. First, there is a cooking set with replaceable inserts.
The user purchases a cast-iron grate for the entire area – 684 × 450 mm.
Two more replaceable inserts – a round cast iron hob and a pizza stone.
For storage of removable inserts, a shelf is supplied, which is hung on the wall of the grill cabinet.
We tried the pizza stone in action. We heated the grill with a stone to 210 degrees, put a pizza on the stone, stood for 5 minutes. It turned out great. By the way, you can bake pancakes on the stone.
A second useful option is an electric-powered spit.
There are mounting holes in the grill body for mounting the spit. A frame is attached to one pair on the right, on which a motor unit is installed, powered by three AA batteries.
A pickled carcass is strung on a spit and fixed. We turn on, set the required temperature and wait for the right time. The result exceeded expectations.
Of course, the grill needs to be kept clean for a pleasing look and a quick and tasty meal. Keeping your grill clean is a matter of choosing effective non-abrasive detergents to avoid scratching the stainless steel. The manufacturer recommends coating stainless steel surfaces with a thin layer of olive oil to prevent corrosion and protect against fingerprints and dirt stains.
It is effective to use special metal brushes for cleaning cast iron grates. It is recommended to cover cast iron surfaces with vegetable oil using a cooking brush, then wipe dry with a cloth.
A special baking sheet is placed under the gas burners, in which everything that has not burned and crumbled, but completely fluid, especially fat, is collected in a special removable tray. This tray and baking sheet must be cleaned. For all the tasks described, there are inexpensive chemical agents. We also use paper towels, a microfiber cloth and running water from a garden hose.
Street grills are bought to roast or bake meat, poultry and fish dishes. Whether it makes sense to buy a gas grill for these purposes, everyone decides for himself. For a long time we used a charcoal grill, but we could not cook chicken wings on the grill: everything is already on fire outside, but inside is still damp. This dish is not a problem with a gas grill. Note that on a gas grill, due to the larger surface, you can cook a lot of meat faster, and this can also be important.
Some people think that a gas grill is just a big stove with an oven. We agree: yes, but this stove is on the street. It is the outdoor grill that makes it easy and simple to organize an outdoor barbecue party with snacks and drinks.
In the case of using gas, we are sure to get rid of the dirt in the form of coal dust. There is more fuss about lighting a charcoal grill than heating up a gas grill. The gas grill can be kept at the desired temperature for a long time.
Ahead of us is the task of mastering the grilling of various dishes, in particular, there is a desire to cook fish on a cedar board.