The Joys of a Family Barbecue

Whenever my son comes home from college, one of the things that he likes to do the most for his younger brothers and sisters is to make them a family barbecue. This is a great way for everyone to have some good, clean fun without spending too much money, and adults and children of all ages are guaranteed to have a good time.

The materials that you need for a barbecue are the following:- A barbecue – either a cheap gas barbecue, disposable, or other kind of charcoal barbecue- Charcoal- Kerosene or appropriate fuel- A lighter- Good barbecue recipes- Barbecue accessories, such as skewers for roasting marshmallows- A large quantity of water to put the fire out quickly if necessary

Make sure that any young children with you are watched by responsible adults very closely, as fires and food can be a great temptation. Also make sure that you do not light the barbecue too close to any overhanging trees or dry grass due to fire hazards. An open field or lawn is best. My son likes to make a special border of bricks around the barbecue to prevent the flames from spreading or getting out of hand.

When it comes to your preference of barbecue, there are many types that can suit your needs. For example, if barbecues are a rare event in your home, you may want to just buy a disposable barbecue. These are very cheap and can be picked up from any hardware store. They consist of a disposable tray containing charcoal, a barbecue grill on the top, and some lighter fuel. The problem with these is that they are very basic and they can take a long time to heat the food. On the other hand, if you are looking something a little more sophisticated, you may be interested in some of the varieties of barbecues and barbecue accessories on the market.

The gas barbecue is powered by propane or other light gas and there are various varieties. Some are lower powered and compact, while others are larger and use quite a lot of gas. The main advantage of a gas barbecue is that you press the button and voila! You have a flame straight away and can get cooking. You can also turn the heat up or down whenever you want. And cleaning a gas barbecue, with its stainless steel parts, couldn’t be easier as there is no dirty ash.

A charcoal barbecue, on the other hand, is definitely preferred by most barbecue “purists.” This is because of the distinctive flavor of the food. How many of us remember the taste of barbecued sausages or chicken from our childhoods? Somehow the gas barbecue will never capture that great taste! The downside, of course, is the cleaning up afterwards, the inability to control the heat (think of the times when the coals go cold before the food is ready!), and the long time it takes to cook.

My son actually prefers the charcoal barbecue because for him and his siblings, the long wait (with all the moaning that goes with it), the dirty coals, and the great tasting barbecue recipes are all part of the fun of a family barbecue. But in the final analysis, the decision is up to you!

Monty is barbecue mad and just loves sharing his ideas and stories about having a great barbecue even if you only own cheap gas barbecues.

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