If you are planning a big summer party this year, there is much to organise, and if you are skilled at preparing the food, your friends will all want to be invited. The thing with barbeques, it isn’t just what you cook, it is also how you go about it, and if you think you need a little help in that department, here are some helpful hints to make the next BBQ a real hit.
- The Right Burner – Whether it is gas or charcoal, your BBQ should be up to the job, and if you haven’t yet purchased one, here are some of the best alfresco BBQ units on the market. Charcoal is definitely preferred by some, who say that the natural wood fuel adds taste to the food, but having said that, some of the best alfresco BBQ menus are cooked using gas.
- The Right Temperature – This is where most people slip up, thinking that flame grilled literally means shoving the meat into the flames, when in actual fact, a little patience is required. After the coals are lit, leave it until there is no flame, and the bed of charcoal is a glowing grey, as this is the time to begin the cook. The coals will give off the hottest and most even heat for at least 15 minutes, more than enough time to cook the meat.
- Distance Counts – This refers to the distance between the meat and the heat source, and ideally, you would have several levels, enabling a finer control of the heat delivery. If, for example, you want the food to stay warm, but not cook too fast, then raise the level slightly. Getting it wrong can result in burnt outsides and pink inners, not really the ideal result. Thicker pieces of meat should typically be further away from the coals, and this will allow an even cook.
- Marinate – This is by far the most effective way to boost the taste ratings, and allowing adequate time is essential. It is often an idea to puncture the raw meat with a strong fork, on both sides, before adding your marinate. The longer you leave it the better, and the fridge is an ideal host for a few hours, which will allow the marination process to complete.
- Timing is Everything – As with any meal, you want the barbequed food to be served at the right time, and so a little planning is required. Allow adequate time for the coals to heat, and if you have a large bed, move half the coals to one side and you can leave cooked meat over the empty section, which will keep the food at the right temperature without any further cooking.
- Side Dishes – A good barbeque includes the side dishes, things like French or pita bread, salads, and also some grilled vegetables. The best way to cook these is by applying no oil, and giving a brief stay on very hot coals, and with a quick turn, you will have a hint of crispiness on the outside, while the inner remains raw.
Being the host for a summer party requires some planning, and with the right equipment, and a great menu, the event will be one to remember.