Follow these simple tips to pull off a BBQ like a pro. Choose the menu carefully and keep it simple, go for impact using big flavours and maximise creativity. Don't sweat the small stuff and have more time for entertaining or grilling.
1) Keep the menu simple
Drinks Make sure they're chilled - if you run out of fridge space fill tubs or buckets with salted ice water and immerse bottles for maximum cooling speed. Keep cocktails simple - think prosecco and peach juice or check out these no fuss refreshing summer drinks.
Starters Sharing platters are simple and effective - Italian, Spanish or Greek themed are all good options to showcase good quality olives and cured meats. Home made warm breads such as focaccia are a sure crowd pleaser as are some easy dips like guacamole . Summer soups like Gazpacho are also an easter starter to whizz together in the blender that are refreshing and delicious.
Sides Go for grain based salads that will hold up well outside in the heat as well as being robust enough for vegetarians.
2) Keep it Bold
Always try to marinade meats in advance. Even a dull chicken leg can become tender and delicious if marinaded prior to cooking.
Go for big flavours that pack a punch. Here are some more easy summer BBQ recipes that deliver on flavour. Also try grilling up chorizo or spicy sausages to add some bigger flavours to the mix.
3) Keep it Creative
Sharpen up your knife skills - spatchcock a chicken or butterfly a leg of lamb to reduce your barbecuing time.
Skewers and kebabs are fun to make and eat. Get creative and come up with your own creations.
Freshly cut herbs are always an effective garnish, as are toasted pine nuts and slices of lemon to add a finished look.
Presentation - Get creative with serving dishes, mismatched ceramic bowls, rustic serving platters and glasses to serve summer soups. Think bright and colourful, even some strategically placed flowers or flowering plants or go all out with bunting and lanterns if in the evening.
Check out our BBQ tips on our site for how to grill and more recipe ideas.