Top tips for cozy out­door en­ter­tain­ing

The tem­per­a­ture might be drop­ping, but that doesn’t mean you have to take all the fun in­doors

The Courier-Mail - Home - - LUST HAVES -

Cooler nights don’t have to mean the end to out­door en­ter­tain­ing. With just a few tweaks you’ll be cook­ing up a storm right through the cooler months.

BeefEater Bar­be­cues prod­uct man­ager De­spina Sierra said with so many out­door heat­ing op­tions, cooler weather was an ideal time to set up a cosy out­door area.

She said roast­ing a leg of lamb or siz­zling a scotch fil­let would im­press guests and add a win­ter flavour to any gath­er­ing. Here are her easy out­door en­ter­tain­ing tips for win­ter:

1. Pre­pare ahead of time: check the gas level in your bar­be­cue, mar­i­nate meat and chop up the ve­g­ies so ev­ery­thing is un­der con­trol as your guests ar­rive.

2. Pre­heat the bar­be­cue: al­low ex­tra time to pre­heat your bar­be­cue and limit the num­ber of times you open the lid to check on food. In cooler months, be more mind­ful of lift­ing the lid to check the meat as this can cool down the bar­be­cue and ex­tend cook­ing time.

3. Light up: when it gets dark, create a warm at­mos­phere with sim­ple light­ing. Place can­dles safely around your out­door space to in­stantly pro­vide warmth and light. Out­door pa­tio heaters and fire pits also pro­vide not just heat, but also light.

4. Plan your space: to create a cosy and com­fort­able mood for guests, don’t be afraid to place rugs, cush­ions, blan­kets or side ta­bles out­side. Guests will be happy to min­gle and keep their drinks close.

5. Seat it out: pro­vide plenty of seat­ing on the out­skirts and make sure chairs, rugs and blan­kets are not too close to a fire pit or flames.

“With out­door spa­ces be­com­ing an in­te­gral part of ar­chi­tec­tural plans and DIY home ren­o­va­tions, with some care­ful thought and plan­ning, it’s easy to make the most of the out­doors, even in the cooler weather,” Ms Sierra said.

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