A barbecue is a social event. A time to get together with friends and family under the hot sun and enjoy a meal Alfresco. Whether you are a BBQ aficionado or a BBQ newbie, our guide will help you pick the right equipment and provide you with some useful hints and tips.
Charcoal or Gas?
One of the biggest questions when it comes to buying a new BBQ, is whether to go with gas or charcoal?
If you are looking for the simplest option, then you will want to go with a gas BBQ. Gas grills will get you cooking in under 10 minutes and with them, you can control the temperature ensuring all your food is cooked to perfection.
For traditionalists, a charcoal BBQ is the only way to go. On a summer’s day, the smell of the smoke on the air is what we all crave, and with charcoal, BBQ smoke is what you will get. Charcoal gives you a more consistent heat, helping you to perfect those perfectly smoked and seared ribs, burgers and sausagse.
Types of BBQ
Okay, so you’ve decided on gas or charcoal, now you need to decide which type of BBQ you want. There are a huge variety of BBQs on the market, ranging from disposable BBQs available at most shops to large brick-built BBQs and of course standard gas BBQs.
Gas BBQs generally come in rectangular or circular options, usually with a lid to help keep heat. The shape and size is dependant on your own personal preferences, although with a rectangular BBQ you can keep certain foods away from each other easier.
Charcoal BBQs again range in size and shape. Small kettle BBQs are perfect for small gatherings, while larger drum-shape BBQs are great for bigger garden parties.
If you are looking for more of a showpiece for your garden, you can buy BBQs to build into your garden. These come in a range of sizes and shapes, some with domes, some open to the elements. The beauty of a brick-built BBQ is in the aesthetics. Not only will they cook incredible food, but they become a decorative statement.
If you are looking for that true smoky flavour, invest in some hardwood or woodchips. Woods such as Sweet Chestnut, Silver Birch and Applewood are some of the most popular and by adding these to your BBQ, you can create incredible smoky flavours which will go deep into your meat. These can be added directly on the gas or charcoal or by using a smoker box. Alternatively, for different flavour smoke, try adding rosemary, mint or even lavender leaves and stalks directly on to the flame.