One of the most frequently asked questions I’m asked is:
“How do I BBQ when the weather isn’t good.”
The one thing that you can guarantee in the British Isles is that the weather is rarely stable. But, we need to plan our BBQ’s ahead for the convenience of our guests (unless you are part of that wonderful breed who cooks on the Barbie most of the time – we love you!).
How many times have the forecasters told us that it will be sunny and warm, then it rains, or that rain is forecast and the sun shines? The answer is to plan for any weather event. I’ve had some cracking BBQ’s when it’s been pouring with rain. After a few drinks nobody cares anyway. The serious point here though is that you have to cook under all conditions. Yes, weather conditions will affect how you approach your BBQ cooking, particular when you are using a rotisserie BBQ.
If the weather is sunny and hot, with no wind, you need to make sure that your food is a little bit further away from the coals. Your food will be cooking quicker than normal, so to make sure that it is cooked through, you might need to add a little more to your cooking time, with your food at the raised height.
As I’ve said in previous articles, wind is your biggest problem. Wind will take away your valuable heat. Even if it’s a hot day, wind can cause a problem. Apart from the nuisance of blowing charcoal dust and/or sparks around, you might think that everything is cooking normally, looking at the outside of the food. But it’s the inside that is important and if your heat is been dissipated, you need to do several things. Firstly, try to install a wind break as this eliminates most of your problems in one hit. You can get some of your friends to stand on one side of the BBQ to act as a wind break (but have plenty of drinks on tap as they’ll be there for a while).
So, you don’t have a wind break and you’re friends have deserted you. Make sure that all your food is on one side of your BBQ, away from the wind direction, so that any breeze is blowing the heat on to your food and not blowing it away. Again, you will need to add cooking time.
Lastly, I’ve said it before, but have a gazebo handy. They’re cheap and easy to put up. They will protect your BBQ from showers and anything short of a storm.
GOLDEN RULE 1: Test your food with a cooking thermometer or stab it with a kebab stick to make sure that juices run clear.
GOLDEN RULE 2: In adverse weather your cooking will need more attention than usual, so don’t leave it unattended for more than a few minutes.
Never let our weather get in the way of your BBQ!
If you have any BBQ tips and advice that I can pass on to our customers, please let me know through our contact page: