August Bank Holiday BBQ Party

August Bank Holiday BBQ Party


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It’s occurred to me before now that the August Bank Holiday weekend really is the Christmas of BBQ season! It’s the pinnacle of the Summer season, the last big hurrah before I hate to say it but the days start getting noticeably shorter, the temperature drops ‘slightly’ and Christmas begins to appear in the shops. Have I really just used the C word twice in as many sentences and did I just say that BBQ is confined to a season?! I may have finally succumbed to the the extended Summer heat and lost the plot! Before things get too bad though let’s move on.

This blog is my menu for a super simple yet incredibly tasty 3-course BBQ feast that has something for everyone and even a hot pudding in-case the weather isn’t kind to us. While the recipes run in course order I am also including a cooking time plan to maximise your efficiency at the grill and time with family and friends. There are things you can do ahead to help keep things super easy on the last long weekend of the Summer.

Menu

honey mustard chicken skewers
apple mustard slaw

rosemary garlic butterflied leg of lamb
butter new potatoes and cucumber mint salad

apple and raspberry crumble
ice cream

Things that can be made ahead

  • Honey mustard marinade for the chicken
  • Apple mustard slaw
  • Rosemary garlic marinade for the lamb
  • Cucumber mint salad
  • Apple and raspberry filling and crumble

Meat Cooking Time Plan

  1. Grill the butterflied leg of lamb at 200 – 220c direct grilling to 45c core temp them rest for 15 minutes wrapped in foil and covered over with clean t towels.
  2. While the lamb rests grill the chicken skewers at 220-240c direct grilling heat to 75c core temp and serve.
  3. Once the chicken skewers are cooked, clean the grate with a wire brush and put the assembled crumble at 180-200c indirect roasting heat to bake for 40-50 minutes or until the crumble toasts and the fruit bubbles at the edges.

 

Honey Mustard Chicken Skewers with Apple Mustard Slaw

Ingredients (make marinade and coat chicken pieces as soon as the day before  or 2 hours)

  • 6 large chicken breasts, cut into large even sized chunks
  • 3 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 3 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 6 tbsp runny honey
  • 1 tbsp cold-pressed rapeseed oil
  • 6 skewers (soak in water for 2 hours if using wood)

Apple Slaw (make ahead)

  • 100g white cabbage, shredded
  • 100g red cabbage, shredded
  • 2 carrots, washed and grated
  • 2 apples, sliced into sticks
  • 6 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 2 tsp white wine or cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp whole grain mustard
  • sea salt flakes and freshly cracked black pepper

Method

  1. Combine the wholegrain and Dijon mustard with the honey and oil in a medium size bowl and add the chunks of chicken. Coat the chicken pieces evenly in the marinade, cover and refrigerate for 2 hours while the wooden skewers soak.
  2. Combine the ingredients for the apple slaw in a large bowl and toss in the dressing ingredients until mix thoroughly. Cover and pop in the fridge until near the time of serving.
  3. After 2 hours remove the chicken from the fridge and thread onto the soaked wooden skewers. Place on a tray, cover with cling film and leave at room temperature for 20-30 minutes to take the chill off the meat.
  4. Preheat the BBQ for 220-240c direct grilling heat with the lid down and vents open as applicable.
  5. Oil the grate and place the chicken skewers on the grill over the direct grilling heat. Close the lid and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Using tongs rotate the skewers on the grill and replace the lid. When the chicken has a beautiful golden exterior move the skewers to the safety area or indirect roasting heat. Use a temperature probe to check the core temperature of a few chicken pieces and replace the lid. Cook until the core temperature of the skewers is 75c then remove to a clean serving plate.
  7. Serve with the dressed apple mustard slaw.

Rosemary Garlic Butterflied Leg of Lamb with Butter New Potatoes and Cucumber Mint Salad

Ingredients (make marinade and coat lamb ahead)

  • 1.5kg butterflied leg of lamb
  • 4 sprigs of rosemary, stripped and chopped
  • 6 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed/grated
  • 2 tbsp cold-pressed rapeseed oil
  • 2 tsp sea salt flakes
  • 1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper

Butter New Potatoes

  • 750g new potatoes
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 1/2 pkt chives

Cucumber Mint Salad (can be made 2 hours ahead)

  • 1 cucumber cut into ribbon using a speed peeler, do not include the seeds
  • 1/2 sml red onion, thinly sliced
  • 50g pine nuts, toasted
  • 3 sprigs of mint picked, roughly chop large leaves
  • juice and zest of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 tsp cold-pressed rapeseed oil
  • seasoning

Method

  1. Combine the chopped rosemary, garlic, oil and seasoning and spread all over the lamb. Pop in a tray, cover with cling film and place in the fridge for 2 hours to infuse.
  2. Combine the ingredients for the cucumber mint salad in a medium bowl and toss to coat with the lemon oil dressing. Cover and pop in the fridge until half an hour before serving.
  3. Remove the lamb from the fridge and leave at room temperature for 30-40 minutes to take the chill off.
  4. Preheat the BBQ for 220-240c direct grilling heat, lid down and vents open as applicable.
  5. Put the potatoes in a pan of salted cold water and bring to the boil. Simmer until soft when tested with the tip of a sharp knife. Drain, add the butter to the pan and replace the lid.
  6. Oil the cooking grate and place the lamb skin side up in the area of direct grilling heat and close the lid. Cook for 5-7 minutes or until the meat has developed a good level of colour and releases from the grate easily.
  7. Turn over to grill the second side and close the lid. Leave for a further 5-7 minutes then check the core temperature.
    *Depending how thick or thinly the butcher has butterflied the lamb timings will vary. As you can see from the pictures the lamb I cooked was fairly thick so I reduced the usual 250c grilling temp down to 220-240c to allow the heat a little more time to get into the centre before the outside was cooked. Whatever the thickness though for beautifully pink lamb remove it from the grill at 45c and leave covered on a warm plate/tray for 15 minutes before slicing.
  8. Add the chopped chives to the buttered potatoes and serve.

Apple and Raspberry Crumble

  • 8 large eating apples, cored and cut into large chunks
  • 2 punnets (300g) raspberries (can substitute with blackberries)
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 3 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 120g cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • 120g caster sugar
  • 240g plain flour
  • 100g porridge oats

Method

  1. Put the apple pieces in a large bowl and tumble with the sugar and ground cinnamon. Transfer to a large cast-iron skillet or enamelled oven dish and layer up with the raspberries. Don’t tumble the 2 fruits together or the raspberries will just make a mess.
  2. Put the butter, sugar and flour in a food processor and blitz to a fine breadcrumb. Transfer to a large bowl and toss through the porridge oats before layering over the fruit mixture. Feel free to pile the topping as high as you like because the fruit will soften and the whole crumble will settle in the skillet/dish.
    *At this stage the dish can be wrapped and placed in the fridge until 30 minutes before you want to bake it. Remove any cling film before baking.
  3. Preheat the BBQ to 180-200c indirect roasting heat with the lid down and vents open as applicable.
  4. Place the skillet on the grill in the area of indirect roasting heat and close the lid. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the fruit has softened, the crumble has turned a beautiful golden colour and the fruit is bubbling up around the edge of the dish.
  5. Remove from the BBQ and serve with ice cream, custard, pouring cream or whatever the heck you like!

I hope this menu and time plan helps you plan your Bank Holiday weekend BBQ. Cooking for crowds can sometimes be intimidating or fraught with worry that something will go wrong. By planning your menu and cooking low-maintenance dishes that can be prepped in advance you will give yourself the luxury of time to keep yourself on-track. For other tips to Maximise the  Space on your Grill check out the blog I wrote on this very topic back in June.

Wishing you a wonderful August Bank Holiday with delicious food and fantastic time spent with loved ones.

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