First BBQ of Summer

With all this sunny weather having a BBQ is inevitable. BBQs are, by far, one of the best things about summer (as long as the weather is ok).

Top ten tips on how to BBQ- “Really nice food” style

Decide on your fuel of choice – gas or charcoal

Ever since we invested in our gas BBQ it has been a lot easier to cook food and entertain at the same time.
Now, I know that I lot of people would say that not using charcoal is a cop out and having a gas BBQ is simply a glorified outside cooker.To be fair they may have a point but, over cooked burnt food is just simply not my style.

Plan ahead
You never know what the weather will hold on BBQ D day so prepare as much as you can the day/night before.

That way, if it rains or it’s a bit cloudy you only have to worry about the food that was bound for the BBQ which, in most cases, can be cooked on the grill or in the oven.

Lighten your load
Ask your guests to bring items for the BBQ with them. However, I must warn you, to be specific on what you want them to bring (unless you want to be drowning in burgers and sausages).

If you want to be in charge of the food ask your guests to bring a bottle or two.

Waiting game
There is always that bit at a BBQ when the food is cooking and everyone is a bit peckish. I always make sure I have a simple starter to whet the appetite. My favourite is a an antipasto platter of some selected breads, meats and cheeses. Crisps with a couple of dips is a good alternative too.

Think outside the box burger
Now don’t get me wrong I love having a burger and a sausage as much as the next person but as the summer progresses it’s easy to get bored of them. To keep it interesting, why not try doing marinated chicken, lamb kebabs, grilled halloumi cheese or , even fish.

Long drinks !
No BBQ is complete without a couple of long drinks. I always make sure there is at least a jug of Pimms and lemonade on the go. I add mint, strawberries and cucumber to mine, its gives it a real summery fruity kick to it.

Keep cool
There will never be enough space in your fridge for all the food and drinks at a BBQ. My tip would be to invest it a large bucket, fill it with water and a bag of ice from the supermarket. Remember to tie a bottle opener to the bucket, that way you will never loose it.

Spare a thought for the veggies
If you have veggies coming to your BBQ I would either leave a section of the BBQ meat free or buy a cheap disposal BBQ for veg only. With all the meat that will be around I think that its a nice touch.

A sweet ending
Last year we were invited to a BBQ engagement party. I knew that most people would opt to bring savouries so, I decided to make a dessert instead.

I made a Chocolate summer fruit pavlova and it went down a treat. One tip on making your dessert is to make sure it’s something you do it in advance. This way you can leave it in the fridge for the big reveal at the end of the night.

End on a high
When the sun is going in and the food has finished, don’t be afraid to bring the party indoors.

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