I didn’t know you could barbecue that
Pit master, Kingsford ambassador and co-founder of the Australasian Barbecue Alliance Adam Roberts is a self-confessed food enthusiast and proud self-taught cook. He owned his own mobile food kitchen for several years, serving up tasty treats like gourmet hot dogs and smoky barbecue pulled pork sliders. But while Roberts names American-style barbecue meats among his favourite foods, he also knows that there’s a whole world of other foods that can be barbecued to perfection. And luckily, he’s decided to give us the inside intel. Below, Roberts shares the surprising foods you can cook on a BBQ, his top tips for sprucing up your barbie skills and the secret to cooking a perfect steak.
Try cooking these on the barbie or smoker
Whole (quartered) cabbage
Cooking these up in the smoker adds great flavour, a unique texture and, with a drizzle of some spiced white sauce and some bacon chips over the top, you have yourself a restaurant-quality side dish.
Who needs a toaster when you have a charcoal grill? Dunk sliced up crusty sourdough into a bowl of melted garlic butter and grill for a mouth-watering toasty char and savoury flavour.
Add some extra flavour to your fruit salad and chuck it on the barbie. Perfect for a summer’s day, grill some chunks of pineapple, peach, apple or even watermelon for an ultra-juicy and tasty take on the classic fruit salad.
For an easy summer breakfast, pre-heat, thoroughly clean and lightly oil your flat plate BBQ grill and cook up some pancakes or crepes. Best of all, you’ll fit way more pancakes on the grill at a time than on in a pan on the stove.
If your wood fired smoker allows for indirect (away from the naked flame) cooking, you can easily bake a New York baked cheesecake just like you would in the oven, but with the addition of a subtle smoky flavour for a little extra oomph. The same goes for any of your other favourite sweet treats, like cookies or muffins.
Top tips for sprucing up your BBQ skills
Season your meat
This is one of the common mistakes people make when cooking their meat. Applying a decent sprinkle of kosher salt, fresh cracked black pepper and a pinch of brown sugar to the meat a few minutes before cooking can make the difference between a good steak and an amazing one. It takes very little effort and comes at minimal expense.
Quality is key
Meat selection is vital to preparing an incredible barbecue, but there’s not much point spending money on quality meat if you’re going to use the cheapest (and often nastiest) charcoal to light up your grill. All-natural charcoal products like Kingsford Charcoal Briquettes greatly enhance the flavour of your food. They’re made from real wood and give an authentic and balanced smoky flavour, making all the difference to your barbecue experience. You can find them at your local Bunnings.
Practice makes perfect
Consider taking a barbecue cooking class or purchasing a “how to” BBQ cookbook to pick up some extra skills. Don’t be afraid to get creative and experiment with different flavours and techniques to broaden what you can do and the quality of your barbecue.
The secret to cooking the perfect steak
This is actually a lot easier than many people might think – it just requires the right tools and the right technique.
What you’ll need:
• A 5cm-thick grain-fed Scotch fillet steak
• A charcoal grill
• A bag of all-natural Kingsford Original Flavoured charcoal briquettes
• A pair of tongs
• A digital thermometer
• Kosher salt
• Fresh cracked black pepper
• Brown sugar
• Aluminium foil
What to do:
1. Mix salt, fresh cracked black pepper and brown sugar in a small bowl and season the thick-cut steak with a generous coating of the seasoning mix, covering all sides and edges.
2. Light the charcoal briquettes. Once they’re all fully lit and providing a hot heat (not scorching), add the steak to the grill.
3. Turn the steak every minute or so to ensure an even cook.
4. Allow the internal temperature of the meat to reach 57°C (the temperature approximate for medium-rare) right in the middle of the steak, then remove from the grill.
5. Wrap the cooked steak in some thick foil and let it rest for a few minutes before slicing and serving with a medallion of garlic butter on top.