Barbecue enthusiasts will already know that cooking outdoors can be a fun, healthy and rewarding experience. This summer Cinders Barbecues encourages as many people as possible across the UK to pop on the apron, grab the tongs and fire up the barbecue to create a fabulous time with family and friends. But remember, an outdoor grilling experience needn’t just be restricted to the confines of our own back garden...
Here we have some exciting and more unusual ideas about how you can slap on the factor 50 and get out and about with your barbecue over the next few months:
On your bike
Pack up your portable BBQ, burgers and buns in your rucksack and work up a healthy appetite by pedalling on your local bike trails. Park up and eat on the grassy areas next to the trail or by bridges, or streams. Much better for you than driving around in a car to find a suitable space and you’re sure to find some exciting, more out-of-the way locations this way. Just remember to leave no trace, and take any rubbish or debris home with you!
A swimmingly good time
Why not try eating out on the barbie and try a spot of wild swimming too. Port Meadow in Oxford offers a wide open space for day and night outdoor eating and aquatic enjoyment. Port Meadow is a large meadow of open common land beside the River Thames. Popular with families and young people, William Turner was inspired to paint his early landscapes here.
Loch no further
Loch Lomond measures 23 miles long and four miles wide and is scattered with picturesque islands, tree-lined beaches and steep mountains. Here nature comes together to cast magnificent views every way you look. Picnic tables are conveniently located across the park with public barbecue facilities readily available.
If music is the food of love…
Why not take your barbecue along to a summer festival. Heading off to Leeds to see the Foo Fighters or Post Malone (yes we are down with the kids at Cinders!) in August, why not take your own permitted disposable barbecue or cooking stove to help cook up a storm? There will be plenty of exciting food on offer from vendors but, if you’re looking for something a little different and on a budget, why not get out the grill?
Have a great time grilling, and Tweet or Facebook us with your new summer barbecue spots. But while out and about here are some top tips for your pleasure and safety:
Make sure in advance that there are no restrictions where you intend to cook
Take care in the hot dry part of the year that you don’t cause fires
Don’t leave the barbecue unattended
Keep a close eye on children
If using a disposable barbecue, let it cool down before removing
Take all litter home and leave the area as you found it
Whether it’s your tradition to plan and book your next holiday when you’ve just got off the plane still wearing your shorts and T shirt, carrying your souvenirs, with your tan intact, and your memories still fresh, or whether you’re one for bagging a last-minute, cost-saving holiday deal on impulse, you’ll be sure to want to draw out that relaxed vibe from your trip away for as long as possible afterwards.
The places to be in 2019
And with the most popular months coming up for people to book and take their hard-earned annual leave, ABTA, the UK trade organisation for tour operators and travel agents, has already predicted the trends for the top 12 holiday destinations for 2019.
The main contenders are Denver in USA, the gateway to the beautiful state of Colorado; the cosmopolitan city of Durban in South Africa; Japan, home to the 2019 Rugby World Cup; Madeira, an up and coming island destination for activity lovers; and Western Australia, with it beautiful beaches. Bulgaria, Costa Rica, Galicia, Jordan, Poland and Uzbekistan all make the list too.
So, what are some of the reasons that we decide to spend our hard-earned cash on getting away from it all and travelling overseas on holiday? Some would say learning about a new culture, meeting new people, enjoying the outdoors, getting healthier, basking in the sun, escaping the patterns of everyday life, and experiencing new foods.
How to bring the holiday home with a BBQ experience
What better way is there, once you’ve returned home to work, the inclement weather, and the bills, to bring more than a fridge magnet back home and to remind yourself of the good times through a barbecue.
Sitting outdoors on a long summer evening with a drink in hand, chatting with friends al-fresco, and the barbecue sizzling away is one sure-fire way for you to bring back that positive summer holiday vibe.
Throw a traditional Lula kebab on the coals
And, if you do decide to make the unlikely destination of Uzbekistan your holiday destination of choice this year, visiting the beautiful historic sites and joining the raft of other Brits looking to take advantage of the old Soviet state introducing visa-free travel, you might want to pop a Lula kebab on the BBQ when you get home to keep the holiday experience alive, at least until the embers fade … if you do, here’s how to make this flavour-packed, traditional Central Asian dish:
1kg lamb mince
1 small onion, roughly chopped
3 tbsp chopped thyme
3 tbsp ground cumin
3 tbsp ground coriander
Large grain coarse salt
Freshly cracked black pepper
High quality flat bread
In the kitchen
Mix the mince with the seasonings
Mould the mince mix into oval shapes and push through a skewer, removing the air bubbles
Chill in the fridge for an hour before cooking
On the BBQ
Preheat the grill
Cook the kebabs for three minutes on each side until darkly browned
Remove from the grill and enjoy with bread, salad and your own choice of sauce
The British Street Food Awards were set up ten years ago by acclaimed food writer and broadcaster Richard Johnson. Richard began his career as a food consultant and restaurant critic but was inspired to set up the awards event to ‘make every single one of us proud to be British’ and to bring out the best in the nation’s street food. ‘[…] the best meals I’ve ever eaten weren’t in a Michelin-starred establishment,’ he says, ‘they were on the streets.
The streets of Bethlehem with its hole-in-the-wall falafel shacks serving up fat pittas, stuffed with hummus, pickle and broad beans. And the Streets of Mandalay, where I first had fishy noodles – for breakfast –still salty from the sea. Street food is exciting. But you wouldn’t say that of street food in Europe. Until now.’ The British Street Food Awards is now the biggest street food competition in the world.
The best of last year’s awards
And last year’s event, with world-class regional winners lining up in London to claim the ultimate prize, certainly helped to put UK street food on the map with an amazing array of tantalisingly weird and wonderful dishes. You only have to check out the entries for best snack to see how far our British vendors have ventured… The Peruvian dished up Anticuchos: cow heart marinated for 24 hours in a Peruvian spice blend, cooked on a BBQ and served with potatoes and Peruvian corn, while Assembelly delighted with popcorn cockles with paprika and crispy seaweed.
How could I be so successful too?
Definitely not your average! If you’d like to check out this year’s crème-de-la-crème of street food, the Welsh heats are still to come in Swansea from August 24-25, while the final takes place in London from 13-15 September.
And, if you’re thinking of setting up your own fast food business and eventually becoming best in class too, maybe even entering the British Street Food Awards yourself, here are some top tips from the industry about how to be successful:
Keep consistent with your locations – people will know how they can come back and find you
Keep good records Make sure you know how the success of your footfall and takings is in influenced by where you go, and when
Push for the right spot – don’t settle for ‘doing ok’. Test the waters for that exclusive location that boosts your bottom line
Get your menu and pricing right Do you have too many items or is the pricing not right for your customer base?
Keep it streamlined Don’t try and be everything to everyone. Find the right product and service and the benefits will follow.
How I made it… Lee Desanges speaks out
In Business Advice online Lee Desanges, from Baked In Brick, Birmingham, explains how he reached success with his unique approach. Founded in 2015, Desanges built a wood-fire oven into a converted Mini that cooks a diverse range of food, from stone baked pizza to slow cooked lamb shoulders. He says: ‘Having run a food business I already had entrepreneurial skills, and having that background as a chef does help massively. A lot of street food vendors don’t have that professional background – they are just really good at cooking one particular thing, something that they’ve learnt and mastered.
For me, I get to put on lots of different specials, which maybe other street food vendors without a cooking background wouldn’t be able to do. That string to my bow is an extra benefit’.
It’s National BBQ week – 27 May to 2 June – Celebrate by finding out a little more about the Great British Barbie tradition
Of course, we’re all hoping for another heatwave of a summer in 2019 and for a repeat of 2018’s magnificent weather that pushed up the value of the UK barbecue market to a staggering £1.6 billion. National BBQ Week will return for a 23rd time this year to once again encourage the nation to go for the grill and fully embrace the barbecue culture.
We know that we cannot always guarantee the UK weather but what better time for Cinders Barbecues to celebrate this increasingly popular form of catering across all manner of events. From an intimate at-home family celebration, to locally-organised events in a pub, club or leisure venue, or even a wedding, find out a more about what we Brits love to do with a BBQ and how we do it differently to other countries too.
What do we eat?
When it comes to what we cook on our barbecues, the UK’s favourite is burgers (81%), with sausages coming in just behind (80%).
The most popular food to accompany a BBQ in the UK is salad.
When do we eat it?
The UK comes out bottom in the league of barbecue frequency. On average, UK households barbecue just 10 times a year, with 14% of us only doing so once or twice a year. The biggest barbecue fans are the Germans, who barbecue an average of 19 times a year! France and Poland are next up at 17 times a year respectively, and in Italy they fire up the barbie just 13 times a year.
Do we put our money where our mouth is?
UK consumers pay an average of £208 for their barbecue, 36% pay between £21-100 and 38% pay between £101-300. Just 4% splash out between £301 and £1000.
In Germany, the average price paid is €248 (£194). In France the average cost is €232 (£181) and in Poland just zł 361 (£64). Italians spend the most on their barbecue purchases at €275 (£215).
When it comes to buying equipment, 18% of barbecue purchases in the UK survey take place online, while purchases from a DIY store are most popular (39%). Other places to buy the BBQ are the supermarkets and department stores (15% each).
The Brits and the Germans are the most cautious buyers when it comes to settling on a barbecue, with 31% and 32% respectively checking the expert reviews on offer before making a purchase. In Poland, perhaps due to the lower average price paid for a barbecue, only 14% checked reviews before buying.
In the UK, Germany, France and Poland, Saturday is by far the most popular day to barbecue. Italy is the exception to this rule, where 42% of people barbecue on a Sunday.
Whatever your preferred place or time, Cinders wishes you a great National BBQ Week.
In the UK, an estimated 2 million people are living with a food allergy. This includes the more well-known allergies to nuts, shell fish, bananas, soy and eggs, as well as some of the more unusual such as marshmallows and hot dogs. For people with allergies, the effects of eating trigger foods can range from mild to extreme discomfort, anaphylactic shock and even death.
In 2014, a new law was introduced to make it easier for people with allergies to eat out more safely, and to alleviate what can potentially be quite a distressing experience. However, last year, the media was filled with news of the tragic death of a girl who suffered a fatal reaction to sesame in a Pret a Manger baguette. This has led to claims that the legislation on clear labelling and transparency of food ingredients has not gone far enough.
Show you’re a caring business
Effective catering for people with food allergies and intolerances, making them feel safe, informed and cared for, is clearly not just a moral thing to do, but can also be a good avenue to help your food business stand out from the rest, and to help to boost your business.
Make sure that your menu caters for people who need to eat gluten, lactose, wheat, and dairy free, that your staff are fully aware of all the ingredients in your food, that they can clearly communicate this to customers, and that all of your ingredients are obviously stated. This also means that you should have the same level of knowledge of all the products that you buy from suppliers and that you only use those that are reliable.
Be knowledgeable and transparent
Review your menu… you may find that there are a number of dishes that already meet special dietary requirements. If there aren’t get creative and make sure that you are catering for everyone and filling the gaps in the market. Why not promote your front of house staff as dietary champions who are able to proactively promote allergies, food intolerances, wellbeing, nutritional labelling, and a great customer experience for everyone.
Make sure your staff are well trained and up to date with any menu and ingredient changes. Never guess, and always be completely honest.
Keep a careful eye on cross contamination
Another focus should be on avoiding cross contamination. This is particularly important in food preparation, when cleaning down tables, and when cooking. When barbecuing, make particularly sure that everyone stays safe and well. Why not buy dairy free cheese and gluten-free buns? One big issue at a barbecue is often the cross-contamination from the grill for those with food allergies. Prior residue can remain on the grill from a previous day or the new marinades can drip and stick to the grill as well. To ensure food allergy safety, be sure to clean the grill for allergen-free foods first before putting anything else on the grill. Using tin foil can prevent foods from having to be cooked directly on the grill where there is reason for concern about food allergies.
Help yourself and others
Become an advocate of allergy and food intolerance sufferers. Why not shout it from the rafters to help them and your business?
Just recently, it has been a rather popular trend to make vegans the butt of jokes. However, with the editor of Waitrose Food magazine recently quitting his job after mocking vegans, and with the number of UK vegans on the up, it’s clear that pub landlords, restaurateurs, and hoteliers across the country should be making provision for this rising number of discerning consumers.
Plant-based eating is soaring
In April last year, Compare The Market announced the results of their survey that revealed that the number of UK vegans is soaring with some seven per cent of British people having gone plant-based. A huge number of British people are turning their back on animal products. Amongst the UK’s 3.5 million vegans are ranked a number of famous celebrities such as singer Ellie Goulding, music legend Paul McCartney and sporting giant David Haye, who have all used their public platform to speak out in support of the cruelty-free, sustainable lifestyle.
So, what can this ‘explosion’ of veganism be put down to? According to Google trends, searches for ‘veganism’ have been rising steadily, and following a similar pattern to Instagram. “The vegan community are incredibly active online,” explains Beth Trundle, head of food at marketing agency Social Chain. “This is likely because their dietary choices are driven by their fundamental beliefs”, she explains, “which can boost their social media activity as they are keen to share their passion for veganism with the world.” Gresham College professor Carolyn Roberts suggests that environmental concerns are largely responsible for edging people towards a vegan diet, as people strive to reduce their carbon footprint.
Whatever spurs on people’s individual dietary and moral choices, it seems foolish, with more and more young consumers eating plant-based, for anyone with a food offering to ignore this growing customer need.
Supply is outstripping demand for vegan food
According to the Vegan Society, demand is outstripping supply and this is an untapped market that could offer huge opportunities for restaurant owners, investors and food developers. Their Vegan on the Go campaign aims to raise attention for the growing demand for vegan options and to highlight to businesses that veganism is a market trend that is here to stay…
So, why not throw a vegan barbecue at your event, making sure that it is the delicious smell of plant-based foods alone that are filling the air!
Serve up some delicious, good-for-you, good-for-the planet recipes:
Here’s how to do vegan on the BBQ
Grilled Polenta Burger: Boil up some coarse cornmeal with vegetable stock until thick but springy, following packet instructions. Fry up a diced onion, a few finely chopped mushrooms and a handful of cooked beans (black beans work great) until the onions are golden brown. Slightly mash the beans when soft. Add to the cooked polenta, along with a teaspoon each of thyme, marjoram and paprika. Take off the heat, and when cool, shape into patties ready for grilling. Serve in a bun with avocado slices, chopped olives and jalapenos.
Baked Sweet Potato: Sprinkle the sweet potatoes with olive oil and salt and wrap them carefully in tinfoil, making sure to leave some excess at the top (to grab onto later). Place directly onto the hot barbecue, making sure to space them out to allow for even cooking. Cook for around 15 to 20 minutes and top with soya yoghurt and chives.
Why not spice things up with some grilled vegan chicken with vegan honey, lime and chipotle sauce or some spicy buffalo cauliflower ‘wings’. Don’t forget to accompany this with a good range of vegan sauces and relishes and serve with some delicious vegan wine or refreshing vegan beer.
Sit back and be prepared for pictures of your delicious vegan dishes to adorn the pages of Instagram and, if you’re looking for some new barbecue equipment to appear in the pictures when you ‘go viral’, check out our Cinders range.
Deep down we’re natural born grillers, but thankfully Barbecues have come an awfully long way since early man cooked animals using fire… check out the Cinders range of high quality, versatile barbecues. And nowadays, it’s essential that the choice of alcohol on offer to accompany the great British barbecue has moved on too!
Like fish and chips, like a horse and carriage, and like Torville and Dean, in the UK beer and barbecues are inextricably linked. But don’t assume that going together is the same as being thrown together. With the ever rising trend in craft beer and growing sophistication in taste, there is a great opportunity, when hosting your next barbecue to truly market your beers and make selecting the right ale a focal part of your event.
The thinking drinker matches intensity with intensity and makes sure that whatever is consumed from the BBQ is not overpowered by the beer.
Drink Saisons with your fancy sausages
Saisons were originally made by farmers in southern Belgium to refresh agricultural workers who laboured in the hot sun. Often brewed with herbs and spices, they were deliberately designed to quench thirsts. Flowing with flavour, spice and herbs, and often quite yeasty, saisons can be perfectly paired with a tasty pork sausage containing everything from apple to pepper, sage, chilli and ginger.
A beer with your burger?
When it comes to choosing a beer to go with your plain burger and bun, there’s no beef! It’s finding something that will complement the array of toppings, relishes, and marinades that needs to be thought about carefully. From gherkins to cheese and jalapenos, an all-round, versatile beer is required. Choose a beer with bright fruit aromatics, a touch of sweetness and a hint of bitterness.
Stoke up your steak
Conversely, steaks don’t pair with a delicate beer. Porters and stouts have a dry roast character to complement the charred flavours created on the grill.
Pour a beer on the Barbie!
And not only does it make sense to present the perfect ale with your food offering, it can make quite the impact to marinade your food with just the right beer. Why not brush king prawns with garlic butter, coriander and an Abbey-style Belgian beer. Pour an elegant, crisp, clean Pilsner lager, with a squirt of lemon, over salmon on the grill. For chicken, reach for a British summer ale or a Belgian wheat beer. Lamb chops love red ale.
And don’t forget to try something a little adventurous to dress your steaks, like this bock beer marinade:
Ingredients (8 persons):
1 litre of dark bock beer
8 large tablespoons of sweet mustard
200 g of dark chocolate
8 tablespoons of oil
spices of your choice (salt, pepper, chilli, garlic)
Grate the dark chocolate, then add mustard and oil and the chocolate to the beer, and flavour to taste with the spices. Place the meat in the beer-based marinade for a few hours so that it can absorb the flavours properly.
Feast, drink and be merry, from Cinders Barbecues.
As we trudge through the depths of winter, making plans for a brighter, breezier and fruitful spring, savvy restaurant owners, pub landlords, hoteliers and event planners will already be looking forward to getting their customers outside to enjoy some al fresco dining in the fresh spring air.
The phrase ‘al fresco’ is borrowed from Italian for "in the cool", although ironically it’s not currently used in Italian to refer to dining outside. Rather, Italians use the phrases ‘fuori’ or ‘all'aperto’ and the expression ‘al fresco’ usually refers to spending time in jail! To ensure that the al fresco dining experience you provide is carefully planned and is a much more pleasant experience than ‘doing time’, here are some pros and cons to think about in advance of those blue skies and sunnier days…
All that’s good about offering al fresco dining
It’s all the rage! When the weather’s good, there can be few things better than dining al fresco. From the Ritz Restaurant Terrace where Paris comes to London, this hidden gem with lush green gardens and high walls brings a taste of Parisian living to this quintessentially British hotel, to the Scarlet in North Cornwall, built to the highest eco-standards, where the restaurant perches on the cliff-top overlooking the golden sands of Mawgan Porth.
You can increase your revenue…
More people will come to your venue if you offer an outdoor seated area. Diners love to eat outside as it appeals to the senses and has the effect of making food seem tastier and fresher. When the weather is good, you can open up a whole new alternative space and with that can come more bums on seats and more money.
You’ll sell more drinks…
Eating outside encourages a fun atmosphere and often more drinks, including wine, beer and cocktails, are consumed. This again is better for your bottom line.
It doesn’t need to be as fancy…
Because the outdoors is the attraction, you don’t have to spend as much on your décor and table decorations.
And the cons?
It’s no surprise that the biggest barrier to offering al fresco dining in the UK is the great British weather. When it’s pouring down outside, you are, of course, losing money! Additional seating, used seasonally, can also cause additional demand on resources such as toilets and, like the weather, it can also be tricky to forecast how many staff will be needed for additional covers.
Some hint and tips
No matter what type of establishment you run, a simple deck or patio even can increase the revenue by up to 30 per cent. So, if you’re up for going about setting up your outdoor space and increasing your food offer to include outside dining, here are some hints and tips to get you on your way:
Have an outdoor only special offer to encourage people to take up the outdoor space
Make sure kitchen and waiting staff can handle increased demand
Provide heat and cools when needed
Keep your space clean and insect free
Add ambience – consider candles or lanterns
Consider pavement seating, rooftop dining, garden dining to open up your space
Keep great service standards
Make sure your furniture is attractive and comfortable
Allow space between tables – al fresco diners often come with pushchairs, buggies and pets
Consider smokers and non-smokers facilities and comfort
Bring out the barbecue
Outside areas are perfect from creating a little diversion from the main menu. Why not have a barbecue? Cinders offers a range of barbecues and accessories that are powerful and dependable to help you create the perfect al fresco dining experience.
Would you believe that street vending only became legal in Los Angeles, USA, from 1 January 2019 after Governor Jerry Brown signed a sweeping new law in September 2018 to regulate street vending practices for California? This is a massive move forward for those who are selling food on the city streets: they will no longer be doing this illegally and will now be officially contributing to the local economy.
Street vending has long been a divided issue in Los Angeles and was catapulted into the spotlight in summer 2018 when a vendor had his cart violently overturned by an attacker. This was captured by a passer-by on video and quickly went viral. Not only will street vendors now be legitimised and regulated, there’s even more good news. Street vendors with previous citations and convictions will now be able to clear their record.
Many consider street food vending a long, respected tradition
An ancient and important occupation found in virtually every country, and major city around the globe, street vendors are positively associated with contributing to economic activity and adding vitality to the streetscape. But, on the other hand, many people associate them with causing congestion, posing health and safety risk, avoiding taxes and selling substandard food.
The Universal Declaration of Human Rights goes as far as protecting the economic rights of street vendors. And many street vending organisations have successfully petitioned for street vendors’ rights to be upheld and for these not to be violated by banning street trade.
Street vendors can represent a major attraction for tourists and allows people a bustling open air experience bringing vitality to public spaces in cities. In smaller communities, street vendors are a vital cog in the distribution network and can contribute to market competition.
Help and advice for UK street vendors
In the UK, the Nationwide Caterers Association has set up Streetfood.org.uk in recognition of streetfood’s increasing contribution to our economy and culture. The organisation provides caterers with the information, system and support they need to be safe, legal and profitable. They are starting a ‘street food revolution’ for an exploding industry.
The UK is fast gaining a reputation for its wide variety and high quality of street food, which started in Asia, is massive in America, and is now firmly finding its feet in Europe. Street food is eaten at markets, at special events, in disused warehouses, at food festivals and on the high street. From French street food sold from a hut in Altrincham Market, including delicious rotisserie chickens flavoured with garlic, thyme and rosemary, to Greet Label’s vegan street food sold in meze boxes across the country and Northern Ireland’s Cuban sandwich factory, there’s something for everyone and a potentially successful business for the right person.
Fire up your career with the best resources
If you’ve got an interesting food offering and great business acumen, why not check out whether starting your own street food vending business could be just the opportunity you’ve been waiting for. And, even better, why not go for it with the best in show – a Cinders Street Wok introduces new technology to an ancient method of cooking, solving problems of noise and skill levels inherent in traditional wok burner.
On the 12 days of Barbecue XmasCinders Barbecues wishes for you …
British Standards Institute for CE Approvals and EC Registration quality, just like our range of quality equipment.
Assembly: The key benefit of a CINDERS grill is how it folds away. To set it up, first hold the unit on its side edge and swing the legs fully away from you. The inner leg struts can then be unfolded and clipped into position.
Reliability: we’re renowned for this alongside the durability and low maintenance of our products.
Business investment: our barbecues won’t let you down. They are dependable, powerful, and versatile.
Employment for local staff who work throughout the year to hand craft your product.
Complete UK distribution from a trustworthy supplier who can meet national demand.
Unbeatable value: payback on our barbecue products is measured in years.
Easy maintenance: a self-cleaning, sealed-for-life high-grade stainless-steel firebox and grilling surface designed not to be removed leaves only the slide-out burners and their high pressure LP gas supplies to service (SG80/TG160 models).
EXcellence! "We don’t make them to look pretty’’, says our Works Manager, "we just pile in the quality and they turn out like that.”
Manufactured in the UK: all our barbecues are made in our modern 15k sq. ft factory near a small village in North Yorkshire.
After sales: you can trust our products and are further protected by our commercial warranty.
State-of-the-art technology: modern laser cutting technology sits comfortably alongside specialist machinery we developed ourselves to mix the very best of tradition with innovation.
Oh and, by the way, did you know that 26 per cent of people in the UK barbecue in winter?
And did you know that UK barbecue champion Scott Lane can show you how to prepare an entire Xmas dinner on the BBQ, along with all the trimmings… oh, yes he can! Check it out here.
So visit our website, where Cinders will make sure you don’t miss out on the Barbecue Ball in 2019… oh yes they will!
A very Merry Christmas and successful and Happy New Year from everyone at Cinders Barbecues.