Father’s Day (17 June) is now one of the on trade’s busiest events. And as most dad’s will want a tipple (or two) to celebrate their big day, Take Stock has brought you […]
Fathers Day: BBQ or Roast?
James Birch, Unilever’s Development Chef, and other suppliers share their tips for the perfect Father’s Day lunch.
The perfect BBQ
Put your food on the stage. Barbecue is like theatre… customers love watching their food being cooked. It makes it taste better. Put your grills on a dais or stage – make it into a show.
- Fine tune your menu to include small plates as well as the main course. Try smaller portions of the meats, maybe a mixed platter.
- Timing is everything. Start in the oven and cooked through.
- Don’t overload. Only offer three or four items as well as your hero.
- Sausages on skewers with grilled veg are ideal for children.
- Burgers a real ways a winner and can be brought brilliantly to life with the right relishes, salads and chargeable add-ons such as bacon or cheese.
- Lamb or chicken kebabs are light and fresh and can be offered in different portion sizes with citrus, hereby flavours thrown in.
The perfect roast
A June roast dinner should have a
So, build in lighter options to the traditional roast…
- A hot beef brisket and Yorkshire Pudding wrap with a touch of horseradish is a perfect lighter option on a hot day.
- Consider salads with plant-based dishes as tapas-style sides or mains in their own right.
A big joint always works but think about your pricing. Pick a good quality sirloin and cost it as premium or go for a brisket and cook long and slow.
Cheaper cuts cooked in their own juices for six or seven hours taste magnificent and are often more tender. The time is all in the preparation so there’s no delay in service.
“Combine pulled pork and Paxo Sage & Onion Stuffing for a dirty pulled pork burger that provides a delicious BBQ option for your menu. It can also be swapped out for jackfruit as a vegetarian alternative.”
Serve it juicy
A wet brine is a superb way to impart flavour seasoning to your roasting joints. It also keeps everything juicy and your yields up. It’s particularly good for pork and chicken. I tend to use a 5% salt to water ratio to just cover the joint. Why not try Szechuan pepper, star anise and ginger? It can be a real game changer for your customers to enjoy. For beef or lamb, I like using a dry rub instead.
Rubs, marinades and spices
- Marinate your cuts of meat overnight for a full flavour, remove any excess before the meat hits the grill… too saucy and it will burn or flare to create a bitter, smoky taste.
- Use wet marinades to keep barbecue cuts moist and to seal in the flavours.For a traditional lamb or chicken shish use Middle Eastern spices to recreate that holiday feeling. Ras el Hanout is sweet and warmly spicy while sumac is tangy with a hint of citrus fruitiness.
- For beef, try skewers marinated in honey and soy sauce for 48 hours to create a salty umami teriyaki sauce.
- Seasonal produce can be stars too! Roasted veggies are ideal for making sure food doesn’t go to waste and are as effective cold or brought to life with a classic gravy.
- Promote fresh, seasonal vegetables and their provenance. Baby carrots roasted with ginger, orange and cardamon make a punchy side, while roast potatoes with a dab of Marmite are crowd-pleasers.
- Truffled or salsa verde roast spuds as part of a main, side or even as bar snacks, do the same.
- Experiment with lightly curried celeriac chips and squashes for a different texture alongside the meat.
Roasted veg too
Seasonal produce can be stars too! Roasted veggies are ideal for making sure food doesn’t go to waste and are as effective cold or brought to life with a classic gravy. Baby carrots roasted with ginger, orange and cardamon make
a punchy side, while roast potatoes with a dab of Marmite are crowd-pleasers.
Offer truffled or salsa verde roast spuds as part of a main, side or even as bar snacks and experiment with lightly curried celeriac chips and squashes for a different texture alongside the meat.
A roast doesn’t need to be all about meat. There are some great meat-free options. If you have the time, why not try Lion’s Mane mushrooms to recreate intense umami-packed meat-like cuts that take on flavours really well? Alternatively, The Vegetarian Butcher has some great easy-to-use products that deliver those meaty tastes and textures.
“Add meat juices from roasting trays to Bisto gravy and season well. Citrus notes, wines and spirits can also achieve a distinct flavour. If you’re struggling with time, make stocks and gravies in advance and freeze well.”
Salads to serve with a BBQ
Don’t be afraid to try something different – grilled cucumber and watermelon may raise eyebrows but will taste amazing. To serve, salt sliced cucumbers and grill for 3 minutes, then combine with olive oil, mint and feta cheese. Grill watermelon to caramelise its sweetness and give it a subtle, smoky flavour.