Is your kitchen barbecue ready?
We’re finally getting some good weather and it’s inspired us to light up the barbecue. We can’t think of a better way to enjoy the sunshine than with a leisurely meal outside, surrounded by family and friends.
Of course, a barbecue sounds easy in theory. We know that there’s an awful lot that needs to happen behind the scenes to make it a success. With that in mind, here are our top tips to get you ready for barbecue season.
The perfect tools
When we were kids, having a barbecue meant a lot of waiting. We remember sitting for what seemed like hours complaining we were hungry whilst our parents said that the barbecue wasn’t hot enough yet. There’s still something nostalgic about a traditional coal barbecue but we love the gas versions too. They’re quick to heat up so if you fancy a quick barbecued steak on a Wednesday night it can be ready in no time at all.
Of course, it’s still important to have the right tools. Whatever type of barbecue you choose, it’s going to be hot. You’ll need a good pair of tongs. They’ll make the food easy to handle and reduces the chance of you dropping it through the grill! Look for a pair with good sturdy handles and rubber grips to hold the food. If you’re going to be cooking for vegetarians get a second pair with different coloured handles to avoid cross contamination.
Remember to protect yourself too. Novelty aprons might be fun but a canvas apron will give you better protection if your food spits. We’ve heard that some people use industrial gloves too. They’ll provide good protection but might be a bit hot on a sunny day.
Eating outside gives you an excuse to have a bit of fun when you’re serving up. You can save the fine china and use colourful plates. They look great and are much less likely to smash if the kids drop them on the floor. The trend for serving drinks in jars with a straw hasn’t gone away yet so start collecting jam jars if you’d like to give it a go.
We love serving salads and meat on big platters and bowls so everyone can help themselves.
If you’re having a big barbecue party you can go even further. We’ve seen blackboards letting guests know what’s on the menu, alongside tiny metal buckets for condiments. You can even convince your guests to make their own pudding if you include a DIY stall with ice cream or a chocolate fountain.
Whilst a barbecue is an outdoor affair, there’s still a lot to be done inside. Whilst the meat is cooking outside, you’ll probably be indoors some of the time sorting out all the accompaniments. That could mean a lot of toing and froing.
A kitchen with French windows leading out to the garden makes your whole house feel more open. You have an easy route out and your guests can wander inside for a chat if they need some shade. Having the doors open can be lovely even if you’re not having a barbecue. You can feel as if you’re having breakfast in the garden even when you don’t fancy going outside.
We hope you’re feeling barbecue ready. The only thing left to do is to work out whether you have enough table space for everyone to sit down. Maybe you’ve got a big garden table or perhaps you’ll need to drag the furniture outside – we’ll leave that one to you!