Calling all BBQ Kings (+ queens)

Gucci

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So I have a BBQ to do to celebrate the nipper's first birthday. Apart from praying for decent weather - have you got some hints and tips for a great BBQ (approx 20 people).

Cheats? Heating in oven first? Prep in sauces to give extra flavour? When's best to cook? Any tips?

:thumb:
 

splang

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Sounds good - I have done two of these recently for about that number of people each time.

Def. oven cook first (5 mins less than usual) and then finish on the bbq. Having one section of BBQ with very few if any coals for a keep warm section.
Seperate table for salad, breads etc. People come for meat and then go to the salad table.

You can find loadsa BBQ sauce recipes online - good idea to make a homemade one in advance and really reduce it down - yummy!!

I normally offer Sausages, Burgers, Chicken in diminishing amounts in that order.

Marinading some chicken overnight is always nice too!

Enjoy!!
STeve
 

st4

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Hmmmmmm. Where do I start.

Steaks are good, thin cut, and marinade over night.

As are kebabs. Love kebabs.

Can't type any more as will dribble all over the key board....
 

A210AMG

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Cannot belive a year has passed already.

Any combination of above sounds great, I'm one for sources so get some in for people to choose. Hope you have good weather and a great time :)
 

Ade B

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Mrs B is a BBQ ninja black belt..

We've done them for 40+ people and favourites are:

Leg of lamb on a rotisserie - marinaded & part cooked, you just nuke it and keep carving bits off, tastes even better when rare on the inside and black on the outside, unlike sausages :D. Very easy to cook when drunk.. Our rotisserie came from Germany and is mains powered, never seen them here..

Fish is great either wrapped in foil or trapped in a double grille thing we have acquired. We've done everything from mackerel, scallops, tiger prawns on sticks (watch out for exploding shells & white shirts) to a whole barracuda - mind the teeth! A trip to Billingsgate is required for this sort of thing which is an eye opener in itself (particularly if hung over).

Buckets of bulgur wheat makes for great salad mixy tabouli thing.

A bucket load of marinaded chicken legs, thighs, wings always get eaten.

Rack of lamb is excellent if a bit pricey for a lot, chops are also great - on a Turkish tip, haloumi on foil with olive oil is tasty (squeaky) if you like that kind of thing.

Kebabs made of anything with peppers which caramelise nicely..

Ribs - in fact pretty much any bit of meat tastes great when chargrilled.

And so on. Even the kids eat the above if presented correctly (de-boned, shelled and so on..)

Disposable plates and glasses make clearing up a 10 min job and keeps washing up to a minimum.

We've got a cheapo Argos barbecue but its pretty big to cope with that lot. Also tend to find the self lighting charcoal burns very quickly and is either too cold or you can't get within 10 feet of the thing...

Our last do was for about 25 people and it was the only wet and cold day in an otherwise beautiful week back in May. A cheapo B&Q gazebo screwed to the decking did the trick. We propped the vents open with chopsticks and kept the barbecue well away from the tent fabric.



Doesn't look like much but tastes fantastic..

A bit of prep goes a long way - best of luck.

Ade
 
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swannymere

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Bit more involved than above but always impresses. Get a whole leg of lamb and debone it (or get the butcher to do it) lay the deboned leg on a flat surface and what you need to achieve is a consistently thick 'sheet' of lamb, to achieve this you will need to make cuts that go the length of the leg and at varying depths. Be confident but don't cut all the way through. Once you have achieved the 'sheet' effect you can marinate however you want for at least 24 hours.
Once marinated wipe off the excess and put the whole leg on the BBQ and cook to taste, i usually cook mine for 20-25 mins on hot coals turning once after 10 mins. Rest for 15 mins after cooking and then cut upto 1 cm slices and serve in a pitta with salad and a sauce.

Here's a video, ignore the annoying woman!
 
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ringway

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I'm amazed at the number of people I see practicing the art of cross contamination. :doh:

Apart from the final serving of the meat with tongs, I go through fork after fork, to turn the meat on the BBQ. The forks are then taken away from the area.

Although I don't do it myself, to be sure sausages are cooked you can simmer them in water for 5, minutes before BBQing.

I got a tip from Gollom a few months back. BANANAS!
Using a hypodermic syringe, inject unpeeled bananas or other fruit with Brandy (or whatever you fancy) and then cook unpeeled on the BBQ.

Best of luck with the weather. :thumb:
 

74merc

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Spatchcock chicken is great on the bbq. Cut the backbone out and squash it flat. It will cook in about 40-45 mins depending on the size of chicken.
 

blondebier

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Gucci - what kind of BBQ are you going to use? (IMO - this makes or breaks a BBQ)

I can wholeheartedly recommend a Weber. (The recipe book has loads of great ideas.) Try beg, borrow or steal one!

I've got the "One Touch Gold" and it is superb. I've cooked a turkey from scratch it is that good.



Some hickory chips give a really nice smokey flavour too.

Get LUMPWOOD charcoal. Brickettes are for girls!

Inevitably you'll probably end up with some veggies... they cook really well as do sweetcorn, courgettes and cauliflower of all things!

Buy lots of meat! 20 people is a lot to cater for. Whatever is left you can always freeze.

(If you've got a gas BBQ then you can pretty much ignore all of this.)

Have a good one! I hope the sun shines for you.
 

74merc

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blondbier, how do you keep the heat in your bbq long enough to cook a turkey? I've got a Weber too but normally after an hour or so the heat dies off. There's always lots of unburnt charcoal left too.
 

Spinal

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I'm doing a largeish thing this weekend... your local butcher should be ablee to source a suckling pig... costs about £10 per kg, with weights anywhere from 4-12kg...

It's hard to BBQ, but if you marinate it overnight in cider&honey, you can then bake it in the oven. Once your guests arrive, pop it on the barbie to crackle the skin, and hey presto, it's ready!

Beware of veggies though... they get very militant when they see a whole live baby animal cooked...

M.
 

blondebier

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blondbier, how do you keep the heat in your bbq long enough to cook a turkey? I've got a Weber too but normally after an hour or so the heat dies off. There's always lots of unburnt charcoal left too.
I've got a Weber Chimney starter.

A what? It's a brilliant little thing that allows you to start a "topup" fire away from the cooking BBQ so that you can get some new coals up/down to the right temperature without burning your meat.

The One Touch Gold has a special grill where you can lift two sides of it up to topup the coals without removing the meat from the centre.

Have a look at your manual. It explains all about indirect cooking in there. :thumb:
 

Mr E

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I do the cooking for the BBQs that Mrs E caters - 50 - 100 people. Everything from whole roast hogs stuffed with apples or chicken, to jerk chicken, stuffed snapper, bass stuffed with lime and ginger, and not forgetting the fabbo hand-made burgers and sausages from the butcher in the village. Here's a few (non recipe) tips:

Chat with your local butcher and get good meat - it cooks better, tastes better and gives better value for money.

The only food to consider cooking beforehand is chicken. The usual reason for food not being cooked properly on the BBQ is that it's too hot. My test is to hold my hand about 6 inches above the grill - if I can keep it there for 5 seconds it's not hot enough, and if I can't keep it there for a 3-count then it's too hot.

When you put food on, leave it for a bit before moving it around - minimises the amount that sticks to the grill.

Have two areas for your meat - raw and cooked. Raw is handled with one set of utensils, cooking/cooked with another.

Don't use forks to turn, use tongs.

Have a small spray bottle handy to cope with flare-ups.

Remember to enjoy it and have a laugh.


There are plenty of recipe sites on the net. Clients seem to like chicken wings, so we cook batches in the oven with a basic salt, pepper and herb rub. These are then finished on the BBQ (5-10 mins to crisp and colour) and then served with a choice of sauce - chinese sesame, buffalo and (Mrs E's own brand) Granny B's Jamaican Pepper Jelly.
 

Satch

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Favourite of ours is boned butterflied leg of lamb (get the butcher to do that)stuffed with mix of chopped fresh rosemary, feta cheese, anchovies, black olives, lemon juice garlic and olive oil. Rolled up again and hold together with metal skewers & string.

Lot depends on size so better to do two smaller ones rather than one vast unwieldy lump which is difficult to move around and cook through.

So according to taste in how well done you like your meat (pinkish in my case) medium sized one takes about 15 minutes per side (do not worry if it burns a bit, but watch out for the feta and oil coming out and turning BBQ into a true inferno) then raise up and finish off at lower heat for another 10-15 minutes. Helpful to have a lidded BBQ but not essential as loose covering of aluminium foil over the top has the same effect

Advantage is that of only having to deal with a couple of items of the BBQ and serving consists of slicing. Good cold as well.

Edit: helpful to have some long sturdy tongs and some of these:

http://www.screwfix.com/prods/18558...E-_-Keep Safe Professional Welders Gauntlets#

Strongly suggest a trial run before a big production number: first time I did this tried it with 3 legs of lamb, did not watch what was going on closely enough, turned around to see what people were pointing at and lo, my BBQ looked like it had been the target for a napalm strike. Still came out well though.
 
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