Once the warm weather arrives, there is nothing better than inviting family and friends around to enjoy some food in the garden. What better way to celebrate the summertime than holding a delicious barbecue? If you are planning on a get-together, Big K has a wide range of outdoor cooking equipment including masonry and stone barbecue sets.
All you need is some good food, great friends and our top 10 essential tips to make your outdoor catering go off with a bang!
Adding your own flavours to barbecue sauce can help to put your personal stamp on the occasion. It is a good idea to keep looking until you find a recipe that you like. Most traditional sauces have a mixture of ketchup and brown sugar, garlic and Worcestershire Sauce in them, and you can also add individual touches such as cola for a sweetener if you wish. There are lots of other ingredients which can be used too, so don’t be shy – make it a sauce to remember.
Everyone knows the importance of having fully cooked meat at a barbie, and the best way to be sure you have cooked all your food right the way through is to invest in a meat thermometer. This will give you and your guests the assurance that everything they are eating is completely done and ready to be enjoyed.
Paper Towels & Wipes
This may not seem the most important thing to remember, but once everyone starts eating your delicious food, they will need something to wipe their hands on. If you stock up on wipes and paper towels, you won’t need to worry about washing a lot of cloth napkins. Paper towels can be easily disposed of once the barbecue is over.
Insects, and especially wasps, can be a real nuisance when you are eating al fresco. If you want to repel them without using insect repellents, then we have a couple of tips for you. Put lids on fizzy drinks and food which isn’t being eaten yet, and you could also put a sweet drink in a completely different area of the garden, well away from the food. This will give the wasps something to enjoy while forgetting about you and your friends eating. Another tip is to place a bowl of cloves on the table, as this will deter them from coming near the food.
Standing around the barbecue while cooking is something we all enjoy doing. It's fun to watch the meats changing colour, while we stand ready with our bread-rolls open. But if the food catches fire it could cause serious harm if it is not immediately extinguished. A fire extinguisher standing nearby could prevent all types of accidents happening and is a worthwhile investment for a safe barbecue.
Some people are happy to stand while eating their barbecue food, but others, especially children and older guests, may want to sit and eat at a table. You won’t need lots of tables, but a few chairs strategically placed could help to ensure that everyone enjoys their al fresco meal.
Outdoor Lighting and Heating
If you are planning an evening meal outside, then you may find that there is a chill in the air, once the sun has gone down. While the barbecue will obviously give off heat, you might also want to consider some other type of outdoor heating. A garden heater provides a wonderful focal point for the garden. Another tip is to place the lanterns in and around the trees, which will give your garden a magical atmosphere, and help to extend the evening even after the sun goes down.
Garden games are not just for the kids. Setting up an area for playing outdoor games such as croquet, bowls or skittles will keep everyone entertained, especially those who are rather competitive – and everyone will be hungry after playing these games.
Food and Drink
Preparing food ahead wherever possible can help to avoid too much work on the evening itself. If you are sticking to a budget, it could also help to ask guests to bring their own bottle. This will ensure that they all have the type of drink they want. Sometimes guests are also only too happy to bring along a dish they have prepared, such as a rice salad or a special pudding, adding to the variety of food on offer.
The last essential tip we have for a top-class garden party is to enjoy it! Don't let your stress levels get the better of you, because, no matter what type of food is served, your friends and family will appreciate the time you have taken to entertain them. They will go home having had a great time, all given by you.
If you are looking for a high-quality masonry, brick, concrete or stone barbecue, Big K has a great range to choose from, as well as clay fire pits and chimneas. We also stock accessories and tools to complete your outdoor living requirements, as well as bbq fuels. Click the link to see our range of products and place an order.