When it comes to outdoor cooking, it’s hard to imagine what a “perfect” barbecue would be like. Would it have an abundance of your favorite foods? Will all your friends and family be there? Or will it have live music, entertainment, and the whole nine yards?
In truth, since it’s a subjective term, everyone likely has a different idea in mind for what a “perfect” barbecue would be. But while our definitions may vary, most of us can probably agree that a perfect barbeque would go off without a hitch and also have a few pleasant surprises that set it apart from the rest. With this in mind, following are a few things you should consider when planning your next barbeque, in order to ensure a glorious BBQ for the ages.
Coal or Electric
One question you’ll be confronted with when hosting a barbeque is whether you want to use a coal or electric grill. If you’re simply looking for what will give you the best tasting food, you can’t go wrong with coal — in fact, some people will tell you there’s just no comparing the taste of charcoaled meat with the taste of electric.
However, there are a couple downsides when it comes to coal grilling. First, coal grills are typically smaller than electric, which leads to less space being available to barbeque food. Second, coal grills can sometimes cook food unevenly and result in undercooked meat, which can ultimately lead to food poisoning. Knowing this, if you will be cooking for a large crowd or you just want to cook more food for your friends and family, your best bet would be to use an electric grill.
What to Grill
At a barbeque, everyone expects the usual suspects — hot dogs, brats, hamburgers and wings — but what some people neglect to throw on the grill is perhaps the most important food group of all: veggies. For whatever reason, veggies are often overlooked when it comes to barbecuing, and this is truly one of the greatest tragedies of modern barbequing. Not only does grilling veggies serve to caramelize them, accentuating key sugars and flavors to make them more savory and generally delicious, but having veggies at your barbecue adds a whole other dimension to the variety of your event. What’s more, if you have any unexpected vegetarian guests, you’ll be able to serve them as well!
In some ways, preparing to host a barbecue is intuitive. For instance, you should of course remember to tidy up around the area where your guests will be, clean the grill, and make sure that you have more than enough food for everyone you expect to come. However, it’s also important to keep in mind that you should marinate your meat for 24 hours for maximum flavor (or at least let it marinate overnight.) Also, if you really want to host a barbeque for the history books, it may be worth your while to make your own homemade sauces, or simply buy some lesser-known sauces from the grocery store. By offering a variety of sauces, you’ll be offering your guests more choices to enjoy themselves, and it’s hard to go wrong in that regard. One final note: If you’re going to use an electric grill, don’t forget to have enough propane on deck!
Sammy Jo writes for Willie’s Pub& Pool, where they serve up tastiest wings Columbia, MO has to offer!