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February 2021 Food Challenge: What do you cook on the BBQ?

Summertime is here, what better way to enjoy it than with a barbie with friends and family on a beautiful summer day.

For the February 2021 Food Challenge:
Please share with us what you cook on your BBQ, and your tips on how to best cook it.

Congratulation to the winners of January 2021 Food Challenge:

@sydneydowers

@gregcarman

@steph2020

@bluebyjane

Big thank you to all contributors for very interesting posts.
From Peter @phb Mike @vax2000 Gaby @gaby

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We have a Weber Family Q 3200 which we bought in 2013.

Bacon & eggs and cocktail truss tomatoes for breakfast.

Steaks, lamb cutlets, sausages, fish fillets or lamb & veggie kebabs for dinner.

Bone- in or boneless beef rib roasts, half legs of lamb, bone-in or rolled pork loin roasts, roast chickens or ducks with my magic stuffing, and pumpkin or sweet potato pieces.

All brushed with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled with freshly ground pepper and salt except for the bacon & eggs and the cocktail tomatoes which get cooked of the flat plate with a little bit of olive oil.

I use our Weber iGrill with 2 probes to check when roasts are cooked.

We also cook our homemade pizzas in it using the Weber Pizza Stone.

We use our BBQ most days but we still only go through 4 to 5 9kg refills of LPG a year so it only costs around $100 to $120 per annum to run.

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Mine is pork belly done three ways…

  1. natural
  2. marinated in garlic and ginger, with a splash of soy sauce.
  3. marinated in Chinese style red pork mix

The secret is to cook the skin side down first…and very slowly on a low heat. It is also best cooked on the grill but be careful of flame ups from dripping fats. If you have a BBQ lid, use it as it better controls the heat and cooking process.

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Most of the year, where I live, outdoor dining is unpleasant. Of the year, six months are too hot, three months are too cold; for nine months the flies will carry you away as well as your food. No matter how careful you are the blighters will get inside the fly tent or any other covering, not to mention your eyes, ears and mouth. I have enjoyed BBQ at other locations but here it just isn’t worth the trouble.

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So where is this delightful place?? Tourism Australia needs to get onto it…!

In a cow paddock inland and north of Newcastle NSW. It is actually delightful in many ways. You can find times to work outside or to enjoy the outdoors when it isn’t uncomfortable.

In part the problem is my attitude that I don’t see the benefit of being out and about in the midday sun. I was deep in beach culture for many years and could never understand people who go to the beach in the middle of the day. The time to go to the beach is from first light until 2-3 hours after sunrise. Why go and sit on hot sand in the blazing sun when you have a cool house up on the hill that gets the sea breeze? Why eat outdoors when you have to fight the elements and the wildlife too?

I see people going mad about outdoor eating as if it was a social imperative. They build shade and mesh rooms to keep off the sun and the insects, with fridges and sinks and stoves because the kitchen is too far away. They put in chimneys to take away the smoke from the fire (the fire that is nice in winter but adds to the heat in summer especially if you are the cook). Then the “outdoor” entertainment area is still too hot so they put in aircon. But that gets too expensive with mesh sides so they close it in. So now you enjoy the great outdoors in a supplementary kitchen that isn’t in the house. At great expense. I know that is an extreme case but it happens.

As for the “Q” I like a flame-grilled steak and pizza from a proper pizza oven and low and slow cooked marinated or rubbed meats. I just need $30,000 to build an annex on to the house where all these things can be cooked and where the locals can be excluded unless invited.

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Tourism Australia has a vested interest in delivering an image of Australia that excludes certain realities. The in urban experience of the great outdoors is far different.

We’ve always had a Gas BBQ or wood fired concrete block monolith. In return we learnt to accept that for most of the year the cook was always sacrificial. IE to the flies, the mosquitos, the humidity, the smoke in your eyes. Completion of the cooking depended on adequate supplies of amber liquid. Quality depended on not too much amber liquid.

We recently purchased a small Weber-Q with a high lid. It is left to cook unattended, outside, lid closed as recommended. Mostly late afternoon to dark except for the 6 months of summer when it’s better to cook before 10am. Tropical strength insect juice for the cook optional.

We cook mostly simple roasts, lamb or pork and kebabs following the guides from Weber. For steak chops etc it’s quicker, more efficient and less cleaning to use a deep pan on the gas inside and finish in the gas oven if required.

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On our Gas BBQ I cook Roasts, Vegies, Steaks, cakes, Pizzas, eggs, pretty much anything that can be cooked in an oven or on a stove top. With the Wok burner it also is used to boil Veg or an extra frypan burner when not being used for a Wok (Wok is used both to steam and stir fry). We find it pretty versatile.

The Weber also does great Roasts, Steaks/Chops and baked cakes and other desserts (one is a baked cheesecake).

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Veg! Love BBQ’d: capsicum, zucchini, tomato, eggplant, sweet corn, sweet potatoes and more. If in hurry par steam in microwave or steam on stove. Otherwise put on charcoal when coals settled and orange, or on gas high to sear, and then low to cook through. If temperature too low veg, like meat, can sweat and lose their juices. If open grill hot enough will not stick, or can spray olive oil on veg before putting on BBQ.
I always cook three times as required for a meal as love it again cold or reheated next day, and have some in lidded container with extra olive oil and herbs, such as oregano, to have as antipasto. Can also add feta cheese and olives to this container.
I’m sorry for those in areas where insects are a problem- BBQ doesn’t necessarily require eating outside, cover up to cook and bring delectables inside!
Also fresh summer stone fruit is surprisingly fabulous chargrilled or on gas plate bbq.

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We use an old half drum with timber (kindling start and hard wood cooking). We have an old grill on top.

We love to cook green prawns and lobster (no fancy add ons - just pepper and butter) and of course the ubiquitous T-Bone and Idaho potatoes (with sour cream and chives).

Old fashioned? Maybe but a cold ale and a glass of wine complete the BBQ and the ambiance of the wood fire is perfect.

I’ve loved reading the posts on this subject … so thanks all

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I have a BBQ with a wok burner, so lately have been doing the same thing over and over, I make a curry sauce (coconut based sauce) in the wok, let it simmer away, cook the chicken or prawns over the grill to get that bbq taste and on the plate I cook homemade roti. So yum, I use Po’s recipe for roti - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JMlGH6Fdwzs - so easy.
Not your average bbq, I know, yet so good.

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We have two :-

i) a large gas fired one which is used when we have 10 or more mouths to feed. While its lid allows for roasting / baking, that hasn’t happened yet.

ii) a) a large basic charcoal Weber which gets used HOTTTTT -
and, way more often, for roast lamb, beef or chicken. The Roast Chicken recipe is from one of the Womens Weekly recipe magazines? Butter, french / german mustard, crushed garlic, and chopped chives, smeared under the skin and down over the thighs. we put a halved peeled onion inside the chicken, no stuffing. How?! you use a large inverted spoon to separate the skin down over the thighs and to the front. Oven thermometer with remote beeper, avoids overcooking.

ii) b) Greek style, boned lamb shoulder or leg. With the blender-made marinade of olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and oregano placed in the opened-up piece by our local butcher, and soaked in the remainder before roasting. Done to pink / just before grey starts. A small number of sprigs of rosemary on top. IME&O rosemary can easily overpower lamb.

ii) c) Roast beef - either rump or fillet - sprinkled with crushed black pepper. Thermometer in - to medium rare for rump, rare for fillet.

And, JBTWay? Well-done means ruined. And, SFA food value to boot.

Tim Bailey

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I’m not sure why I was chosen for this food challenge, given that I don’t cook on what others would recognise as a barbecue at all!

I do have a fireplace in the backyard, a three-sided brick box with a loose sheet of tin as a lid, and with lengths of metal conduit mortared in with the bricks to protrude from each side wall on three levels by a couple of centimetres so as to support a clamp-style grilling device, with its clipped-together handles sticking out the open front so the griller can be lifted out and turned over to cook evenly on both sides (and can be easily slid towards the back or towards the front to cook the meat at the front as evenly as that at the back).

What I clamp inside the griller shows an almost complete lack of imagination, or at least of any willingness to deviate from the classic Aussie grill that I enjoy: lamb chops (loin and/or leg and/or forequarter) at the back and sausages at the front.

I need to have a metal skewer handy to regularly pierce the snags – indeed, having established a bed of coals from burning firewood collected from bushland nearby, the meat will cook as much from the fat running out of the sausages (and from the untrimmed chops) and dripping onto the coals with a satisfying burst of flame and sizzle, as from the heat of the coals themselves.

If for any reason there is a lot of flame from the fire in the base of the box I can lift the griller up to the top level, and when the coals have nearly died out I can drop the griller to the bottom level, but usually almost all the cooking takes place on the middle level.

The fireplace adjoins the grassed patio where a picnic table will be set with cutlery and wooden bowls full of a variety of salads, and with family and/or friends and/or other guests lounging around in picnic chairs while they chat to me and offer all sorts of useless advice.

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I love to cook Greek Pita (home made) and stuff them with grilled lamb kebabs, zucchini, capsicum and eggplant. Topped off with either a tahini or yoghurt and raw garlic sauce. YUMMY!!!

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My tips on barbecuing meat.

Marinate the meat, but not for too long,
as it can have the opposite effect from the one we wish to achieve.
2-4 hours should be enough, the lesser time for more tender cuts.
Marinate in a glass container, food-grade plastic, or self-sealing plastic bags, and place in the fridge.

Ingredients:
Oil
Balsamic or red wine vinegar
Lemon juice
Salt
Black Pepper
A few cloves of garlic (optional)
Herbs: Can be: Rosemary, Sage, Thyme, etc.

Marination not only tenderises meat, but also adds flavour to it.

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For all those who are interested in great food, check out “Remarkable Places To Eat. San Sebastian” on SBS On Demand.

I watched it yesterday afternoon and it was the most incredible food program I have ever seen.

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Well, let’s go back in time to the December 2019/Jan 2020 CHOICE magazine, aptly named the Summer Issue, where there was a great article on what else you can cook on the BBQ apart from the usual snags and meat combo. And lo and behold there was… watermelon. Yum.

Char grilled, it’ll be a crunchy, succulent, and very delectable affair.

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As the article says the BBQ is capable of cooking much more…but people stick to the traditional foods.

May I ask what you cook on yours,
assuming you BBQ at all,
@Read_CHOICE_AllNight ? :slightly_smiling_face:

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Sorry but that was the Food Issue, @Read_CHOICE_AllNight

The Summer Issue was November 2019 :slightly_smiling_face::slightly_smiling_face:

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