We recommend you use our Japanese Charcoal starter pan for smaller grills for your binchotan. It is easy to light and takes the hassle out of getting your coals hot.
- Place binchotan into your pan by standing pieces upright. Be careful not to make the pieces too long as they can fall out.
- Light the gas stove and place pan on top.
- Wait till the coals are red hot (turn them half way through) (8-10 minutes)
- Transfer the hot coal into your grill and cover with additional binchotan if required.
- Wait till all the binchotan is lit before cooking. This allows for the grill to insulate the heat and burn at a consistent temperature. (+-5 minutes)
Another method is to light with a propane/butane mix blowtorch for smaller Hida Konro grills. The Japanese also tend to also use this method. Available at most hardware and cookware stores.
- Fill the grill about halfway with charcoal
- Light blowtorch and wave evenly over charcoal
- Once the charcoal is alight add a few more pieces
- Start cooking
If using firelighters please avoid chemical based lighters. Build your African binchotan into a pyramid shape and light your binchotan in your grill. Once lit add additional binchotan and wait till fully lit.