With the lockdown restrictions loosening and the weather warming, barbecue season is definitely here.
We’ve asked top chefs for their tips on finding the best barbecue dishes to help you prepare like a pro at home, whether you’re cooking with a gas barbecue or “wood-fired cooking” with hot air. charcoal and wood.
Caramelize your meat
“Put unsweetened apple juice in a hand-held sprayer and spray it on the meat every few minutes.
“Do this during cooking to keep the meat moist and give it a nice caramelization,” says Chef Ben Bartlett, President of the British BBQ Association.
During the last few minutes of cooking, brush with hot BBQ sauce.
Let stand after cooking
Ben recommends bringing meat back to room temperature before cooking to help it cook faster and drain fat better.
Then, after cooking, give a short break before serving your cooked meat.
“Steaks and chops will benefit from resting for a few minutes before serving,” Ben said.
Oil lean meat before barbecuing
Mike Robinson, champion of the champions of the last Eat Game Awards, says: ‘For lean meat like wild game, I use a dry mixture of black pepper, sea salt, paprika, and a little garlic powder.
‘Followed by a light brush of oil, then grill over charcoal for a good two minutes before turning over.’
After two minutes on each side, spray or brush with a mixture of sherry vinegar and sugar for a stunning finish. Then rest it for five minutes before cutting it across the grain.
Use a sandwich bag for a quick marinade
Ben says, “If you marinate meat in a zippered tub, it will marinate in half the time.”
Marinate a few hours or overnight for added richness, but don’t forget to baste the meat for the last 5-10 minutes of cooking.
Make sure it is well cooked
“Before cooking, wrap the chicken breasts in cling film and flatten them slightly to help them grill evenly,” says Ben Bartlett.
the Food Standards Agency suggests that you consider baking all the chicken in the oven first and then giving it a final barbecue finish, to make sure it’s done well (the same goes for pork).
Dip wooden or bamboo skewers
Saiphin Moore, founder of Rosa’s Thai Cafe, said: “Place the wooden skewers in the water and let them soak for about 10 minutes before cooking them.”
This will make it easier to thread your chicken, meat, or veg / veg ingredients without breaking them, and can also keep the sticks from burning or even igniting.
Working with the rule of three
It’s all in the planning, so make a list of things you can prepare ahead of time.
Ben says, “My rule of thumb is three items on the barbecue, such as a burger, sea bass and a chicken thigh per person, then add salads and bread.”
Oil your cooking grid
Fish is delicate, so the last thing you want is for it to stick to your barbecue and fall apart.
Ben says, “The biggest trick to grilling fish properly is to make sure you oil your cooking grid before you start. Season the grill with olive oil and rosemary even before cooking the fish.
Treat vegetables differently from meat
Riverford Chef Bob Andrew said: “Your veggies won’t sear quite the same way as meat, and they won’t run or grease.”
Some of the same principles apply, however: the thinner the cut and the larger the surface, the faster the cooking. A larger, denser item will require longer cooking over low heat.
Pre-cook the corn on the cob
Simmer the corn on the cob before grilling, cutting the entire cob in thirds, and boiling it in a saucepan for 20 minutes. You can then store it – drained and cooled – in the refrigerator if it is prepared the day before.
Ben says, “Sprinkle paprika over the corn and place it on the grill, turning the corn on the cob frequently before frosting them with hot barbecue sauce. “
“You want a high starch potato, like the Russet, that has an incredibly smooth texture when cooked,” says Ben.
You can also try barbecuing smaller potatoes by stringing them onto skewers.
Take 500g new baby potatoes, boiled in their skins until just tender, and thread them onto metal skewers with fresh bay leaves. Using a brush, coat them with a marinade of complete mustard (1 tbsp), honey (1 tbsp), olive oil (3 tbsp) and salt of seafood and ground black pepper.
Then cook on the coldest part of the barbecue until it is caramelized and crisp. Remember that smaller potatoes take less time to cook.
Use seasonal vegetables
Chantelle Nicholson, Patron Chef of Tredwells in London’s Seven Dials, says: “Seasonal vegetables are so delicious when cooked on the barbecue.
“We are right in the middle of the British asparagus season – perfect for barbecuing. You can brush with a little miso paste mixed with water or oil and grill until smoked.
Other vegetables that she says work brilliantly on the barbecue include:
- green beans
- baby gem lettuce cabbage halves and quarters
- leeks and spring onions.
Make a “quite” vegetable vinaigrette
You can make a simple harissa dressing with rose harissa paste and sour cream or tahini.
First mix half a teaspoon of the paste and add more to get the flavor you want.
Chantelle says, “Drizzle over just about any grilled vegetable and it will taste amazing. He is really a good all-rounder.
Vegan options and protein substitutes
Jackfruit makes a perfect substitute for vegan barbecued shredded meat served in a bun with vegan coleslaw.
Ben Bartlett says, “Take the unripe, mashed, or canned jackfruit (in water or brine, not syrup), mix it with onions and barbecue spices, then do it. cook on a baking sheet or pan on your barbecue until golden brown. ‘
Make the most of the spices
Just because you’re a vegan doesn’t mean you have to forgo interesting flavors when cooking with plant proteins like tofu.
Maryanne Hall, from Viva! The Vegan Association’s Vegan Recipe Club says, “Use sumac (or somaq) – a dark red, tangy but chewy Middle Eastern spice – to give it a rich flavor. Ideal for flavoring tofu satay skewers to put on the barbecue.
Other traditional flavors include chili and galangal (related to ginger but with a citrus flavor).
Don’t forget the barbecue when planning desserts
While you have the barbie, why not use it for your sweet lesson too? “Bananas, peaches and pineapples are fabulous on the barbecue,” says Ben.
Wrap a banana in foil and place it on the grill. When it’s soft to the touch, slice it open and pour in a generous measure of Irish cream for a simple but delicious pudding.
Spice up barbecue fruit
Riverford chef Ben Andrew said: “Fruit sweetened with chili and salt is definitely an acquired taste, but in places like India, Southeast Asia and Mexico they are common partners with pineapple and mango. ”
Make barbecue pineapple sticks with sugar, chili, lime and salt. Cut a pineapple into quarters and sprinkle with brown sugar, then place it on a barbecue over medium heat and grill for 10 to 12 minutes until caramelized, and place two limes, cut in half, on the grill to do the same.
Squeeze some hot lime juice over the pineapple, then sprinkle with a mixture of brown sugar (1 tbsp), salt (1 tbsp), chili (1 tbsp) and zest of lime before serving.
Add the maple syrup
Maple syrup can be used as a base for recipes like barbecued pork belly, but don’t forget it when cooking fruit on the barbecue as well.
Samantha Evans and Shauna Guinn, co-founders of Hang Fire Southern Kitchen in Wales, say: “Barbecuing with maple syrup enhances the flavor of stone fruits like peaches or nectarines.”
Cut the peaches in half then grill them over indirect heat before placing them in a cast iron pan over hot coals and pouring over them bourbon (35 ml) followed by Canadian amber maple syrup (100 ml).
With the pan now on the indirect side of the barbecue, close the lid and cook for 20 minutes with the raspberries (150 g), the black cherries cut in half (300 g) and the crushed hazelnuts (70 g) until the fruits soften, before serving with the ricotta and the syrupy juice.