Barbecues 1-4 (An Abstract)

Due to the lack of existence of this blog during barbecues 1-4, here’s a synopsis of the first four barbecues. You’ll just have to take my word for it that they happened. For each of the posts on the way to 30 barbecues, I’ll give a short description of what we had, the weather, and such. If you’d like to see something else, let me know. Recipes will appear in the Recipes section, and I’ll link to them from here. So here ya go:

Barbecue the 1st: April 8

The first barbecue of the year! We’d not long got back from Michigan, so were still a little jetlagged.

The first barbecue (that I took a picture of). Rosie looking on longingly.


Sunny! Evening, no rain, it’s all good. Oh and a little windy. Sometimes an issue, but not today.


See the image! We cooked a couple of Kebabs (though these were with turkey – similar recipe, similar time to cook), a beefburger (not a MattBurger yet, sorry) and two rump steaks, simply prepared with a brush of oil, and some salt and pepper. For medium rare, these take 4 minutes or so per side.

With barbecue one complete, we resolved our target: thirty by the end of September. It’s on.

Barbecue the 2nd: April 10

Only two days after, we were at the grill again, this time with Gemma’s mum and sister.


Scorchingly hot, dry, low wind. Good barbecuing conditions. Evening time, so it was starting to cool.


This time we did a little of the regular fare – some shop-bought, organic sausages and some burgers. My general feeling on sausages is that they should be at least 70% meat or more. You need some fat in there, because it helps the barbecue to continue cooking, and adds a lovely smokiness to the overall flavour (if you’ve had any good sausage experiences [ahem], drop me a comment).

The burgers were standard supermarket good quarter pounders. I’d usually go with MattBurgers, but it wasn’t worth the impromptu effort.

The other meat was Rainbow Trout – if you haven’t tried this on a barbecue, I recommend you do. Put it on some oiled foil to prevent it sticking to the bars, and season it. Takes about 5 minutes.

I also quite like to do vegetables on the barbecue. My favourite is garlic tomatoes (recipe coming soon), but we had garlic mushrooms too. Yum. First family barbecue of the year = a success.

Barbecue the 3rd: April 11

Hot off the trail of the second barbecue, we were onto our third. It was a Sunday

Barbecue-roasted chicken
Yum. Note the position of the charcoal, and the tray underneath

(and that means Sunday dinner). What better than a whole chicken, roasted on the barbecue?


Hot, midday sun.


There’s a separate recipe for it so I won’t go into much detail here, but we only cooked the chicken, and had it with a simple salad, dressed with lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil. If you haven’t tried barbecue-roasted chicken, do it now!

Barbecue the 4th: April 16

Ah, the last of this post. Here we experimented with a couple of meats: pork rib steaks and salmon.


Sunny, cool evening.


The salmon was done in the same way as the trout – on top of some oiled foil, and seasoned. Because it’s thicker it takes a little longer – 7-8 minutes.

We also tried pork rib steaks. These don’t look that appetising when you buy them – they’re not expensive, and have fat running through them. But that makes them ridiculously juicy and tender when cooked. I seasoned the steaks on both sides with salt, pepper and chopped rosemary, and a brush of oil. Seriously, seriously good.

That’s all for now, but as I write this (while sitting in the garden in the sun, tempted to barbecue again), we’ve actually already done barbecues 5 and 6. They’ll be posted soon.

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