Monday, July 14, 2008

Barbecue

Summer. Barbecue. Those two words that go together like cheese and bisuits, melon and parma ham, roast beef and yorkshire pudding. It's just something that is.

Back at the Benson household when I was young I had the eponymous role of barbecue lighter, before Dad would come home to take up the role of barbecue chef on the barbecue he made at the bottom of the garden himself from old reclaimed bricks. Along with breakfast chef and kransakake maker it was one of his best culinary roles. We would pick the overgrown herbs from the garden and add them to the flames underneath cooking meat to give it a great flavour, and after the main course had been polished off we would stoke up the coals, add a few logs, switch the lights and the music on, and sit round the fire will after midnight, the sound (and warm breath) of the cows chewing the nettles right behind us.

These days the barbecue spirit lives on, as shown in a recent barbecue at Upper Court.
Skewers of tiger prawns marinaded in chilli sauce with rocket salad and chilli mayo.
Inspired by the quality and intense taste of the Home Farm bacon on the indoor grill at Rectory Park back in January, I added a barbecued bacon, vine tomatoes and St. Eadburgh cheese salad as a starter this year with balsamic dressing. I was lucky enough to arrive at Home Farm one once last year as they were curing their bacon. They take a pork loin, rub in their salt cure, vac pac it and leave it in the fridge for a couple of weeks. The bacon you buy in supermarkets normally bleeds water as you cook it. This is because it has been dropped in brine to cure it - and the bacon takes on some of that brine before it is injected with more water to increase the volume (weight) so you get less bacon for your money and it never goes crisp because it has so much water inside. The bacon from Home Farm is dry cured so loses excess water which means it goes crisp, and that, along with the fact that their pigs are roaming around free in the open air eating natural food, means, along with the bacon from Carol Webb in Chipping Campden it is the best you will ever find.
Barbecued lamb loin fajitas with coriander, iceberg and yogurt pictured just before being rolled up and cut into 3.

Barbecued skewers of salmon interleaved with basil.

Chadbury free range, organically reared chicken poached in Plum and brandy wine from Barnfield winery in Broadway and wrapped in parma ham, then barbcued:

For dessert there were skewers of barbecued caramelised pineapple and barbecued strawberries with white chocolate dip.

1 comment:

Barbecue Lover said...

That salmon looks great, I'm going to have to try interleaving the basil like that, would be a fantastic flavour.