Lord of the Flame – Top Barbecuing Tips

Us Brits have a rare one or two months a year when the sun comes out and then it’s go, go, go to use the BBQ! Let’s barbecue everything, breakfast, lunch and dinner! And that time is fast approaching.

But let’s face it – most of us are rubbish at barbecuing! If we’re not burning the sausages, we’re setting fire to the garden fence, running out of gas, and often completely giving up and using the oven anyway!

Barbecuing requires a lot of concentration, which is particularly difficult when you’ve already had a few beers! However, if you can master the BBQ you are likely to gain a new-found respect amongst your friends.

As we offer a large range of Gas and Charcoal BBQs we want to help you master the difficult art of cooking over the fire! So here are our top tips, equipment and techniques to make you lord (or lady) of the flame!

Get the right barbecue!
The right barbecue for you depends on the flavour of the food you like! Do you like an extra smoky flavour? Well, then you need a charcoal one! Like a familiar oven-cooked taste? Gas barbecues are for you!

No matter which one you choose, you must have a lid! It locks in flavour, keeps the temperature consistent and opens the door to so many more dishes! Without a lid, you cannot cook beer can chicken, or melt cheese on burgers, or smoke ribs…

Use the right fuel
As soon as the smallest of sunrays peeks through from behind the clouds, shirts are off, the sun cream is on and people all over the land are rushing to the nearest petrol station to pick up charcoal for their barbecue. But being prepared and taking time to choose the right charcoal can actually have a huge impact on the way your food tastes. We recommend Lumpwood charcoal – it may look like burnt tree but it gives the best flavour!

Wait for it…
We know the sun is a rare sight in Britain and you’re in a rush to make the most of it but barbecuing right takes patience and concentration! You must wait for the flames to die down. The coals must be white hot – grey and glowing – as this offers the hottest and evenest heat.

It’s getting hot in here…
Getting the temperature right is crucial to serving up perfectly cooked food. The best way to test the heat is with your hand but please don’t go sticking your hand directly on to the barbecue! Hold your hand about 12cm/5inches above the grill and see how long you can hold it there comfortably.

6 seconds = low heat

4 seconds = medium heat

2 seconds = hot, hot, hot!

0 seconds = A Fire Brigade may be necessary!

Get the best tools
Don’t lose another sausage down the grill, and never flip a burger over the edge again, get yourself the best barbecue tools and you’ll be able to enjoy every last scrap!

You should choose a decent fish slice, a heavy-duty oven glove and maybe even a fish grill. But the one piece of equipment you really cannot do without is a decent pair of tongs – they give you the most control and reduce the chance of dropping anything…no more wasted sausages!

What to cook…
Homemade burgers are perfect for barbecuing. Buy mince with plenty of fat and you’ll be able to make juicy, flavourful burgers whether you like them pink in the middle or cooked right through.

Fish is also another amazingly flavoursome dish when barbecued! People often forget fish can be barbecued but a whole trout or a side of salmon tastes great when grilled!

Sick of sausages and burgers, you can add great flavours to your vegetables too! What you want to do is char the vegetables along the bars, so slice them thinly and grill straight away. Once cooked add the flavour in with some quality olive oil and a bit of vinegar.

Don’t forget the sides! Corn on the cob tastes great from the barbecue and you could also rustle up some flatbreads!


We hope our top tips help to create barbecue magic in your garden this summer!


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