Marinating and adding spice rubs to fish and meat before it hits the grill can add some serious flavor to your food, but it's also easy to overdo. We called in our friend and barbecue expert Elizabeth Karmel to explain the ins and outs of both methods.

These step-by-step tips from her cookbook, "Soaked, Slathered and Seasoned," will guide you through your next barbecue endeavor and make it a delicious success.

Do you marinate a different way? Karmel says that "a lot of cooking is about tradition. Keep doing it the way your mom or dad did it if it tasted good."

Marinade Defined
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What is a marinade? A seasoned liquid that adds an extra dimension of flavor to meat, poultry, fish or vegetables with the help of active ingredient -- acid. With tougher cuts of meat, marinades also act as a tenderizer. Always marinate in glass, plastic, or stainless-steel, never aluminum, which can react with the acid.