As we’re getting closer to the summer, t-shirts, shorts, beers and BBQ’s will be out in full force – and every estate will smell of grilled meat. Here’s how you can impress everyone this year at your summer party
Play your sides right!
Often overlooked, the sides are a great accompaniment to all selections of meat. Skewered veg and halloumi nicely covered in salt and pepper, oil, oregano, basil and lemon juice is always a winner!
Sides such as potato salads and coleslaw are easy to make, and can be made the day before so you have more time to sit back and relax in the sun. To make potato salad, all you need to do is boil some potatoes, toss into a bowl and chuck in the following:
3 tbsp mayonnaise
3 tbsp olive oil
3 finely chopped spring onions
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
Chopped bunch of chives
Salt and pepper
Not only will making your own save money, it’s also healthier and much easier than you think. The kids will enjoy getting their hands dirty too!
All you need to do is mix together the following ingredients and shape into patties:
Finely diced onion
Drizzle of oil
Salt and pepper
The most important part of getting strong flavours is to marinade your meat for six hours (preferably overnight). This barbecued hoisin chicken recipe is perfect for wowing your guests, and when left to marinade, you’ll be feeling like Nigella. Cut chicken in to 2cm cubes, and mix in the following ingredients (add chillies if you like it hot):
1/2 bottle of hoisin sauce
1/4 bottle of soy sauce
1 tbsp of oil
1 clove garlic (crushed)
Thumb-sized piece of ginger (chopped)
1/2 bottle of honey
When you’re ready to cook, skewer up the chicken and fire up the BBQ – keep basting with the remaining sauce until it’s cooked.
Satisfy a sweet tooth
With every meal, you need something sweet for afters. Why not make the most of the still burning BBQ? Cut a slice along the length of a banana, fill with chocolate and wrap it in foil. After around 20 minutes on the BBQ, you’ll be left with this hot chocolaty goodness within a banana. Perfect served with ice cream!
Don’t forget fish
Those poor fish always seem to get left out of BBQ parties. Grilling whole fillets of sea bass, trout or salmon with lemon and chopped fresh dill is an instant classic. Why do you think Aussies like to ‘put a prawn on the barbie’ so much? Because it tastes great!
Choose the right BBQ
It has to be charcoal. There’s nothing wrong with gas BBQ’s, but you won’t get that extra smoky flavour. The second thing you need is a lid: it locks in the flavour and keeps the temperature constant. You can also melt cheese on burgers and cook bigger cuts such as a leg of lamb or ribs.
Choose the right fuel
As soon as the sun comes out, we all rush out and grab the first pack of charcoal we see. However, the choice of coal makes a big difference to ease of lighting, burn time and the most important of all – flavour.
DJ BBQ, the author of Food Tube’s BBQ Book, says Lumpwood charcoal is the best as it will give maximum flavour. If you really want to impress, try adding wood chips to your charcoal – Hickory and oak go perfectly with fish and pork, whilst dry herbs such as rosemary and thyme are also great.
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