Published on June 4th, 20120
10 Tips to using your BBQ Safely and Efficiently
The weather may not have decided what it wants to do yet here in the UK, but it is still quite hot and humid and time to clean up the BBQ and make some delicious food. There is much more to cooking BBQ food than simple sausages and burgers. If you have bought a gas BBQ with a lid, there are so many different foods and cooking styles you can try out.
1. Cook with the BBQ lid down to keep a constant temperature
If you wish to try out smoking a piece of meat then buy yourself some smoking wood chips or planks. Different woods will give your meat a different flavour so experiment, and from your local DIY or outdoor store they will offer special woods specific for smoking in BBQ’s. Follow the instructions on the chips – some chips will need soaking for about half an hour in water whereas others can be used dry. If your BBQ has a smoking box, fill one side with the chips and the other with water. If you do not have a smoking box, you can make a pouch or envelope out of foil for your wood chips – make slits in it and position it above the heat under the grill bars. Close the lid of your BBQ and don’t put the meat on until you see smoke coming out. Cook with the lid closed.
3. Remember to soak wooden implements and skewers so that they don’t burn
4. Keep Those Pests Away – Flies and Mosquito’s
Eating outside and enjoying your BBQ can be ruined by flies, wasps, gnats and mosquitoes. Citronella candles, torches or lamps or cook with garlic to repel those pesky pests can be purchased from supermarkets, garden centres and DIY stores during those summer months.
5. Preheat the burners for at least 10 minutes
This helps to prevent food from sticking and will also give meat lovely grill lines/sears.
6. BBQ Hygiene
You don’t want your guests or family to get food poisoning so here are a few hygiene tips:-
- Use a meat thermometer to check meat is cooked properly.
- Keep chopping boards clean and use separate ones for chopping raw meat and preparing salads and vegetables. Wash up plastic boards thoroughly in a dishwasher and clean wooden ones with hot, soapy water and then spray with a bleach solution and air dry.
- Use separate cooking utensils for raw meat and taking cooked meat off the grill.
- Use separate plates for carrying raw meat to the BBQ and carrying cooked meat.
7. Keep Your BBQ Clean
Clean regularly with a wire brush and scraper. Keeping the grill clean will stop food being contaminated with the flavours of past BBQs. BBQs are easier to clean when they are still warm.
8. Use Marinades to flavour Meat and Fish
Marinade meat in a plastic container with a good seal or in a well-sealed plastic bag. You will then be able to turn the container or bag over at regular intervals to coat different sides of the meat.