Spring is here, and with that comes warmer weather, many bank holidays and, of course, plenty of barbecues. But if you’re wanting to ditch the usual burnt sausages and dry burgers and replace it with a set of tasty new skills, we have the tips for you.
When you think of hosting a BBQ, you might think about kicking back and relaxing with a cool drink and friends. But in fact, barbecuing takes a lot of time and attention, especially if you want the food to come out close to perfect.
There are certain steps you can take to make sure your dishes have the ideal flavour whilst also saving time when cooking. From preparing marinades, having a consistent clean of your BBQ and picking the best style of BBQ that suits you, up your BBQ game with Outback’s tips.
Choose The Right BBQ
Probably one of the most important steps is choosing the right BBQ. The type of barbecue you have will dictate the ease of your experience and the final flavour of your food. See a run down below of each type to help you decide.
A gas BBQ offers the perfect combination of temperature control and authentic barbecue flavour. With the ease of gas, there’s no need to faff with charcoal, no messy charcoal to remove, and when paired with accessories to enhance the flavour, you won’t notice the difference.
For extra smoky flavour, opt for a charcoal BBQ. You can lock in the flavour by placing the lid on top and keep the temperature consistent. Perfect for a traditional barbecue experience, the charcoal BBQ will give you that chargrilled result every time.
Can’t decide between the two? A hybrid BBQ offers a seamless blend between the distinctive charcoal taste and the control of the gas BBQ.
Ideal for travelling, portable barbecues are compact, easy to clean and quick to assemble for a hassle-free experience. Because who said outdoors adventures should be tasteless?
Read on: Get BBQ Season Ready with Outback
Get The Right Tools and Accessories
The right tools will make your BBQ experience a lot more enjoyable and provide you with better results. Start off with getting a good set of tongs, a steel spatula and barbecue brush. These are essential.
With the correct tools, like a good pair of tongs for optimal control, you’ll avoid discarding a sausage down the grill.
To improve your barbecue further, here are some additional tools you should add to your collection.
To really elevate the authentic charcoal flavour, partner up with high quality charcoal supplies such as coconut shell briquettes.
Another way to create a traditional smoky flavour is with a smoker box. Either use wood chippings or create your own. Once they start smoking, add your food, close the lid and you’ll notice an extra smoky difference to your meal.
To avoid the guesswork of over or under cooking, the use of a thermometer will result in perfectly cooked meat that’s moist and flavoursome. You can find thermometers with alarm settings to notify when your meat has reached your chosen temperature.
Temperature is Important
A BBQ needs temperature control just like an oven, and this can determine whether your meat is left moist after cooking or comes out over-cooked.
When using a charcoal BBQ, you can use the half and half method. This consists of placing charcoal under half of the grill, leaving the other half empty, so you can cook food right to a char and allow them to finish off cooking away from the heat.
This is what will give you have moist middle without overcooking or burning the outside. You’ll also save on charcoal!
Marinade For the Best Results
If flavour is what you’re after, making your own marinades will take any BBQ to the next level. You can mix it up and add your favourite flavourings, or go classic with a combination of salt, pepper, onion and garlic granules and brown sugar. Add chilli powder for spice or other dried herbs and spices for something more powerful.
In order to avoid the smoke masking the taste of your marinade, the longer you leave your meat to marinade the better (even over 24 hours is best). It’s also key to keep the marinade and brush your meat every 10 minutes while you cook it for optimal flavour.
Don’t Forget the Veggies
One of the best things about barbecues are the number of sides you can try out. And that includes vegetables. Most people focus on the meat on a barbecue, but the vegetables need just as much attention. The ideal outcome is a nice bit of charring on the outside of the veggies, so for best results it’s important to slice them thin so they aren’t rock hard on the inside.
You should also try to cook them without oil or seasoning and add this once cooked instead. Adding before can give a soggy result.
Keep It Clean
If you keep up with your BBQ’s cleanliness, you’ll avoid the risk of fires from leftover grease, fat and food. Making sure your BBQ is clean for every use will also mean your food won’t have the underlying taste of leftovers.
Spray your grill with vinegar and leave for up to 10 minutes before scrubbing it clean. You can then use soapy water to soak the grill and rinse. Keeping up with this after every use will result in authentic flavours and no safety hazards.
With these tips, you’re all set and ready to get grilling again. From getting a good pair of tongs, to cleaning consistently and whipping up some exciting marinades, there’s plenty you can do to enhance your BBQ experience and impress your guests.
We’d love to see what you cook up on your Outback barbecue, post your pictures on Instagram and Facebook and tag us (outbackbbqs) to show us your creations – we’ll repost our favourites!