Updated: May 22
With summer now in full swing (albeit its a little cold this week) we thought we would put together our BBQ checklist for you so you don't miss a thing!
If you cant be bothered with trying not to burn the sausages, slow cooking ribs or doing the washing up then send us an email and we will be happy to help firstname.lastname@example.org also check out our bbq menus www.grapefruitcatering.com/bbq
One Week Before
Make a guest list Call or send out invites.
Take Inventory How many people are coming? You'll need enough meat, beverages, eating utensils and seating equipment to accomodate everyone.
Decide on a Menu What types of meat will you be grilling? Do any of your guests have special dietary restrictions, allergies, or prefrences? (For example, if you plan on serving seafood, you may have guests allergic to shellfish. Are any of your guests
Assign Decide who will bring what dishes, other refreshments or necessary equipment such as extra chairs, tables, or utensils.
Clean grill Ensure the Barbecue grill is clean and in good working order. You may want to clean and test it out first if it's been awhile.
Equipment and Utensils:
Cooler Keep several large coolers and buckets stocked with ice. Separate alchoholic beverages, bottled water, and sodas.
Napkins and paper towels.
Paper/plastic plates A few different sizes. Large plates for food, smaller ones for salads or desserts.
Plastic cutlery Knives, spoons, and forks.
Disposable cups for cold drinks If you plan on serving coffee or tea, make sure you have disposable hot-liquid cups, sugar or sweetener packets and stirring straws, as well as tea, coffee and creamer or milk.
Plastic sandwich bags and plastic wrap
Storage containers Ideal for leftovers.
A few Days Before
RSVP Call to make sure who's coming and the foods or items they plan on bringing.
Setup If you can, start setting up tables and chairs.
Buy nonperishable items Buy all snack foods and non-perishable or long-lasting spreads and dips, if you're not making them yourself.
Get all utensils and decorations.
Make any foods you can in advance Any frozen cakes or home-baked goods can be made in ahead of time.
Check to make sure you have enough lighter fluid, gas, coals or wood for your grill.
Gather any additional supplies, such as entertainment equipment.
Barbeque Day Set Up
Marinate Marinate desired meats a few hours before (or even overnight)
Set up tables and chairs Cover tables with paper or plastic tablecloths and secure so they won't blow over.
Set up any decorations, such as banners, flags, or other colorful accents
If it's a hot afternoon, try to provide shade by setting up a tarp or tent, or placing tables beneath shady trees.
Place garbage bags in plain sight for easy trash disposal
If it's an evening barbeque, set up citronella candles to ward off mosquitos
Set up one or two tables buffet style Organize plates and eating utensils at one end, with cutlery in cups for easy grabbing. Salads, side-dishes, spreads and garnishes can go on another table, just be sure you can cover perishables from heat and insect
Barbeque Day Grill Prep and Safety
Grill preperation If you have a gas grill, make sure the tank is full and works properly. If you have a more traditional grill, make sure you have plenty of coal and lighter fluid.
Fire up the grill Close the top to warm up the grill properly.
Clean the grill rack Do this with a metal grill brush, and then put half an onion on metal grill fork, dip in oil and rub across the grill. This will ensure the grill is extra clean and the meat won't stick.
Ensure you have all grilling tools They should be clean, sharp, and ready to use. Have more than one pair of tongs for different types of meat.
Never touch the grill or cooking foods with your hands When putting meat on the grill, use tools and tongs.
Adjust fire levels Make sure the fire is strong enough to cook meat though, but not to high, otherwise your food will burn.
Place meat on grill by time Chicken wings, for example, take longer than other types of meat. Depending on how your guests want their red meat cooked, you may have to leave some steaks or burgers on the grill for longer. Fish is somewhere in the middle,
Grill any veggies on a separate rack as well Some veggies - like potatoes, onions, and corn on the cob - take longer. Peppers and zuchinnis and tomatoes don't require much time at all.
Keep separate plates for different meats, and keep meats covered Not only do you want to keep your grilled meats hot, but covering them keeps them from spoiling faster and protects from insects.
Wear a hat and sunscreen Try to avoid inhaling smoke from the grill.
Don't leave the grill unattended for too long If you must, close the grill, and warn children to keep clear.
Foods To Have:
Barbeque beverages for all Bottled water is a must-have. Cans of soda or bottles are preferred at bigger parties, but you can also buy large 2-liter bottles and have guests fill their own cups. Beers and assorted bottled cocktails are good grown-up beve
Meat matters! Hamburgers, hot dogs, shish-kebobs and grilled chicken, ground lamb or turkey patties, grilled steaks and salmon fillets, tofu or black bean burgers ..the list is endless. Find out what the majority of your guests prefer, and go from there
Appetizers Crisp cut veggies with dip, chips and salsa, pita wedges with hummus or other spreads, various chips and crackers with cheese, mixed nuts and other finger-friendly foods are good for guests to munch on.
Salads Regular mixed green, with assorted dressings to choose from, potato, pasta, and egg salads, cole slaw and other chopped specialty salads are good to have on hand.
Spreads, sauces, and marinades Ketchup, mayo, mustard, relish and of course barbecue sauce are all staple flavor enhancers. What about Tobasco for spicy-lovers? Fish-eaters may want tartar or cocktail sauce. Get creative! try setting out Wasabi paste,
Garnishes Lettuce, tomato, and raw onion are good starters to top off burgers and wraps. Various sliced cheeses for the sandwich and cheeseburger group. Go for chopped or grilled onions and mushrooms, or chili for coney-dog lovers.
Various buns, rolls, breads, pitas and wraps Who says all burgers have to go in a bun? Give your guests options. Try a whole-grain tortilla or onion roll.
Side dishes Corn on the cob is a classic favorite. You can roast potatoes and veggies on the grill, or have them as oven-baked sides.
Dessert Is there really always room for dessert? Leave that up to your guests. Fresh fruit salad is a great option, as it is both light, sweet, and refreshing. Even people who tend to avoid fruit will find themselves sampling this after a big barbecue
After the Barbecue
Leftovers Immediately wrap up perishables (leftover meats, salads, cheeses and spreads) and put in the fridge. If you have lots left over, give to willing guests.
Replenish ice in coolers frequently Keep your drinks cool.
Throw away all trash, including food scraps.
Turn off the grill Clean the grill thoroughly after use. Make sure it is still warm, as it will clean easier.
Disinfect tables and chairs.
Store any extra unused utensils for next time.
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