How To Plan the Perfect Barbecue Menu
Before you start on the menu selection for your barbecue there are
several things you need to check you have before the day.
To plan the perfect BBQ menu it is best to start with a list of your preparations
well in advance. Check that your barbecue is in good working order and that you have sufficient gas, coals, BBQ
tools such as skewers, tongs, brushes etc.
At least one week before the party, check the long range weather forecast. If good
weather is in doubt then either make sure you can adapt your BBQ to be held inside or put up some sort of covers
for your guests, borrowing these from friends if necessary.
Next make sure you have all the plates, glasses, cutlery etc that you will need
for your guests. Always allow a few extra serving plates to put the cooked food onto. If you choose paper or
plastic tableware, buy this well in advance to avoid a panic on the day.
The perfect BBQ menu need not be a complicated affair but one that is carefully
planned and caters to everyone's taste. For this reason you should check with your guests first if they have any
special dietary requirements such as vegetarian or nut allergies. BBQs are very simple to plan around a variety of
different dietary needs, but being prepared is vital.
When planning the perfect BBQ menu it is a good idea to have a good selection of
meat. This can be in the form of favorites such as burgers, sausages, steak, chops or mixed kebabs. If you want to
have an alternative to meat, fish cooks very well on the barbecue. Whole Salmon cooked in foil or king prawns on
skewers served with sweet chili sauce make a special BBQ dish.
It's important to have plenty of vegetable dishes at your barbecue not only for
the non-meat eaters, but to add variety to the meat dishes. Mushrooms, tomatoes, sweet corn, onions and peppers
threaded onto wooden skewers and basted with oil add flavor and aroma. Remember that if using wooden skewers, soak
in cold water for at least an hour before putting on the BBQ to stop them burning.
There are many recipes for BBQ sauces and rubs to add flavor and tenderize your
meat. Most of these are very simple and just mixed in a bowl and rubbed or brushed onto the food or used as
marinades. Most of these can be made up in advance to save you time on the day. BBQ rubs can be made several days
ahead of your BBQ and stored in an air tight container in the fridge.
Salads are a must at a BBQ, these are not so easy to make up ahead of time, but
you can have all your ingredients ready and washed or prepared in advance. Salads that are rice or pasta based can
be cooked earlier in the day, cooled and stored in the fridge, adding the rest of the ingredients just before the
While there are many dessert dishes you can make on the BBQ such as grilled
bananas or pineapple, if you don't want to have the stress of yet another dish to cook on the BBQ, then making or
buying desserts and having them ready to bring out for your guests is the perfect answer. Big bowls of strawberries
and cream or fresh fruit salad make refreshing desserts. Or making your own favorite deserts that can be made and
frozen the week before will save a lot of stress.
And finally drinks. A selection of beers and wine go well at a BBQ. For those who
want something a little more refined, sparkling wines or Pimms make the BBQ perfect. Make sure you have plenty of
soft drinks and ice. If room in the ice box is limited, fill buckets or cool boxes with ice to keep drinks cool and
store out of the sun. And one last handy tip, have some dustbin bags handy so that at the end of your BBQ clearing
up can be shared. Barbecue -BBQ eBooks