6 Ideas for Backyard Barbecues

For some people the recent exceptionally warm weather heralds barbecue time. For others it is a year-round enjoyment that can give the opportunity to try new barbecue recipes.

There is absolutely no need to stop short at steak and chops and sausages with a bit of limp salad and a lump of bread. Plan a barbecue as you would a well-balanced meal, preparing interesting sauces or marinades and refrigerate crisp, interesting salads in advance.

Whether you cook on an open wood fire, a gas barbecue at the lake-side, or use any one of the numerous and varied gadgets now on the market, it helps to have equipment designed specifically for this method of cooking.

A long-handled pair of tongs and fork are basic necessities. Protection comes from a sturdy oven-mitt and an equally sturdy apron that will not flap dangerously against the fire protects the cook from the heat and from splashes.

In the interests of safety it is a good idea to buy bright and unbreakable glassware and crockery. Bright colors add to the gaiety of the occasion and show up in unfamiliar settings, especially after dark. Unbreakable glasses need not be expensive and are an insurance against injury when there is little protective clothing and very often feet are bare.

We also advocate the use of aluminium foil for wrapping potatoes, vegetables, bread, meat and fish. Use double foil to give extra strength and if foods to be barbecued are dry, grease the foil with butter or oil. Food wrapped in foil may be placed directly in low coals or may be placed on a grill or hot plate above hot coals.

The following recipes are reproduced to awaken interest in more adventurous barbecue menus.

Veal Cutlets

  • 2 veal cutlets (or veal rib chops)
  • 4 mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoons white wine
  • 2 tablespoons cream
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped chives
  • salt and pepper

Place cutlets side by side in center of a large piece of greased, doubled aluminium foil. Peel and slice mushrooms thinly, place on top of cutlets. Turn up sides of foil. Add wine, cream, salt and pepper and chives. Seal foil securely.

Place packages on barbecue over medium hot coals and cook for approximately 30 minutes or until meat is tender. Turn once while cooking.

Polynesian Pork Kebabs

Serves 4: 750 g (1½ lb) boneless leg pork

Marinade:

  • 1 finely chopped onion
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 4 Brazil nuts, grated
  • ¼ cup (2 fl oz) lemon juice
  • ¼ cup (2 fl oz) soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • few drops Tabasco sauce
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons salad oil

Cut pork into 2.5 cm (1 in) cubes. Place meat in a mixing bowl, pour over marinade, mix well, cover and stand for at least 2 hours. Drain meat and place on skewers.

Barbecue over hot coals for approximately 20 to 25 minutes or until meat is tender. While cooking, baste frequently with marinade and turn regularly.

Heat any remaining marinade and serve with the kebabs.

Marinade: Combine all ingredients and mix together thoroughly.

Glazed Frankfurts

Serves 8 to 10: 1 kg (2 lb) frankfurts

Sauce:

  • 1 cup (4 oz) canned apricots, drained and pureed
  • ½ cup (4 fl oz) tomato sauce
  • ¼ cup (2 fl oz) vinegar
  • ¼ cup (2 fl oz) sherry
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground pepper.

Barbecue frankfurts over medium coals for approximately 7 to 10 minutes, turning and basting frequently with the sauce while cooking.

Serve frankfurts when hot and glazed. Heat remaining sauce in a heavy based saucepan and serve separately.

Sauce: Combine all ingredients and mix together thoroughly.

Golden Chicken

  • 1 x 1.5 kg (3 lb) chicken
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup (5 oz) honey
  • 2 tablespoons French mustard

Cut chicken into serving pieces. Combine curry powder and salt and sprinkle over chicken pieces. Mix honey and mustard together.

Barbecue chicken over medium hot coals for approximately 20 to 25 minutes or until tender, baste frequently with the honey mixture while cooking. Allow more cooking time on the bone side than the flesh side.

Herb-Grilled Fish

Serves 3 to 4: 1 x 750 g (1½ lb) fish, (bream or bluefish) fresh fennel, dill or thyme

Sauce:

  • 125 g (4 oz) butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander seed
  • ¼ teaspoon cardamom
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 cup (8 fl oz) yogurt

Wash and dry fish. Brush fish inside and out with the sauce. Place in a greased wire grill.

Barbecue over medium coals for approximately 30 to 45 minutes or until fish is lightly brown on both sides and flakes easily with a fork. Turn frequently and baste occasionally with the sauce while cooking.

Before removing fish from barbecue, place fresh herbs, on coals, the smoldering herbs will flavor the fish.

Heat any remaining sauce and serve with the fish.

Sauce: Combine all ingredients and mix together thoroughly.

French Bean Salad

  • 750 g (1½ lb) French beans
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup (1 oz) slivered almonds, toasted
  • French dressing

Top and tail beans, string and cut diagonally into 5 cm (2 in) pieces. Cook in boiling salted water for approximately 10 to 15 minutes or just until tender, drain and cool. Place beans in salad bowl, add onion, and just before serving, add slivered almonds and pour over French dressing. Toss together gently and serve immediately.

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