No matter if you’re a skilled master or a BBQ novice, pretty much everyone loves lighting up the coals, donning the apron and taking control. Do you know these 7 essential BBQ skills? Test your knowledge, please your BBQ guests and stock up with half-price BBQ essentials from April 25 at FIELDS China.
To be cooked, or not to be cooked
Banish the woes of undercooked meat once and for all! Grasp a small knife and cut into the center of your meat – you’re looking for flesh that has thoroughly cooked through, with juices running clear. And you’ll know that flaky fish is ready when the flakes come apart cleanly when you apply a little pressure.
Tis the season
Yeah yeah, we’ve all heard it a hundred times before – seasoning correctly is any chef’s 101. But here’s the rub (pun intended), while you’re fine to marinate meats overnight – in the fridge of course – using pepper, herbs and the like, don’t ever add salt, alcohol or anything acidic so early on in the game! Really, you should be looking to add these ingredients two hours before you cook, max – any longer and the meat will start to chemically ‘cook’. Citrus juice is especially tough since it can change the color and texture of meat and fish in particular, in a matter of minutes. Ideally, season with salt just before you’re about to throw the meat on the grill. And be sure to use finely ground salt – large flakes of expensive sea salt will fall right off into the flames.
Not so cool
Take your meat out of the fridge a good 20 minutes before you’re about to flame it. You want it to lose its chill and be near enough room temperature. If not, you increase the risk of burning the outside before the center is cooked through.
The heat is on
That said, don’t leave meats lying around in the full gaze of the sun. The same is true for cooked fare, while we’re on the subject – you don’t want anything sitting around for more than two hours anyway.
The raw and the cooked
If you’re catering for a big group you’ll likely be cooking in batches, but make sure you don’t drip juice from raw meat and fish onto steaks and burgers whilst they’re cooking. And don’t be tempted to use any excess marinade from the raw meat as a dipping sauce.
Don’t settle for the classic, smoky barbecue effect alone. Turn your game up a notch by scattering fresh herbs onto the coals. Think thyme and rosemary – anything that goes well with meat. Soak the herbs in water first – they’ll last longer on the coals and all that water will create plenty of smoke.
It ain’t over till it’s over
And when everything’s done and dusted, the fun been gone, take the bore out of the chore that is cleaning your barbecue. Simply cut an onion in half, stick it on a barbecue fork and rub it over the grill while still warm. Onions make great natural cleaners since they’re bursting with disinfectant chemicals that kill bacteria.
With a full range of meats and veg, perfect for the barbecue, FIELDS also stocks all the essentials you need to get grilling in the sun. Shop from 25 April and save up to 50% on selected barbecue fare.
FIELDS (www.fieldschina.com) is a popular online grocery store for safe, quality food in China. FIELDS stocks fresh organic fruit and veg, imported and domestic meat and seafood, plus essential pantry items from home. Order before 5 pm in Shanghai and benefit from same day delivery with delivery free for orders over RMB 200. A new customer? Great – you’ll receive a free gift with your first order!