Summertime BBQing is here!

As it is already June, you probably have been using your bbq for several weeks already this summer. Whether you have a gas bbq, or a charcoal burning bbq, this method of cooking can produce a delicious dinner. We have a small black bbq that I have on my patio. It sits waiting for a sunny day to be used.

To start my bbq, I use a kettle filled with old crinkled newspaper, plus several pieces of charcoal. Once I light the paper, the charcoal gets about ten minutes of heat, where the flames start the charcoal to kindle. I enjoy starting my bbq this way, as I will be guaranteed to have a nice smokey flavored dinner. You see, I often put mesquite wood on top of my charcoal to add extra flavor.

The night before I want to have bbqed foods for dinner the next day, I take my fresh meat, such as chicken or lamb, and start a marinade. The trick to a great marinade are the contents, plus the amount of time you let your meat sit in it. Overnight, turning your meat in the marinade a few times, I find works best. A delicious chicken marinade that I enjoy using has the following ingredients: Olive oil; Soy sauce; Worcestershire sauce; Red wine vinegar; Lemon juice; Dijon mustard; and Salt and Pepper to taste. Lemon juice can be replaced with lime juice if you choose to have a different flavor. I found the best way to have your meat tenderized is by gently rubbing your marinade over all sides of your meat, then placing it inside a clear plastic bag. This way, your marinade can penetrate directly into your meat. Thus, enhancing your bbq dinner the next day. Another trick to a great marinade is to use kiwi as your tenderizer. Peel, then cut up your kiwi fruit and place next to your meat. The longer you leave it this way, the more tender your meat will be.

If you decide to use lamb for your bbq, a delicious marinade with lemon juice, olive oil, thyme, oregano, salt, and pepper will make you wait impatiently for your bbq to be done. Even friends who do not like the taste of lamb will enjoy this marinade. You will be surprised!

For those who prefer to eat vegetables, a bbq can still be an enjoyable meal. Slice up eggplants and marinade them with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper for a few hours. You then will cook them for a few minutes on each side over a medium heat bbq. Grilled red and orange peppers marinaded with the same marinade will also complement your dinner, besides adding a beautiful bright color to your dinner.

Mushrooms placed on skewers also add another great texture and flavor to your bbq dinner. Try them! No calories to the wasteline.

We welcome your respectful and on-topic comments and questions in this limited public forum. To find out more, please see Appropriate Use When Posting Content. Community-contributed content represents the views of the user, not those of St. Louis Public Library