Feast on the beach: out­door bar­be­cue recipes

End­ing a peace­ful af­ter­noon at the sea­side with fab­u­lous, easy bar­be­cued food may be the best thing you do with your fam­ily this year, says Genevieve

Countryfile Magazine - - Contents - Pho­tos: Ja­son In­gram

Agood old bucket-and-spade day out on the beach is per­haps the clas­sic Bri­tish fam­ily ‘out­ing’, but if you ex­tend the day into the evening with a bar­be­cue, it may just turn out to be the very best thing you do all sum­mer.

Cook­ing and eat­ing out­side creates mem­o­ries to trea­sure for years. Be­sides, it’s a well-known fact that food tastes bet­ter eaten in the fresh air. The sense of free­dom and the break from rou­tine makes eat­ing al fresco feel ex­cit­ing and energising for chil­dren and grown-ups alike.

Al­ways check the safety rules be­fore light­ing a fire, as each beach will have dif­fer­ent reg­u­la­tions, but gen­er­ally if the fire is con­tained and raised off the ground, it is more likely to be al­lowed. On the sub­ject of safety, ob­vi­ously never leave a lit fire unat­tended – and if I were cook­ing

“EAT­ING AL FRESCO IS ENERGISING AND EX­CIT­ING FOR ALL”

with young chil­dren around, I would use rocks or drift­wood logs to cre­ate a gen­er­ous cir­cle around the fire that they would be warned not to cross.

Be con­sid­er­ate of your beach­side neigh­bours and try to light your fire down­wind to pre­vent the in­evitable smoke from be­ing too ir­ri­tat­ing.

About 30 min­utes be­fore I want to start cook­ing, I start a small fire in the base of my fire pit with a fire lighter and a few lit­tle pieces of kin­dling, to which I add char­coal to pro­vide a good heat to cook on. Once the fire is burn­ing well, I might add a few logs. Send­ing the chil­dren off to gather bits of drift­wood is a good way of oc­cu­py­ing them, but be aware that for­aged wood may con­tain more wa­ter than ideal, so just add a stick or two at a time. As with a bar­be­cue in the gar­den, you are ready to cook when the flames have died down and the coals are glow­ing white with heat.

Th­ese easy recipes are all pre­pared ahead of time in the com­fort of your own kitchen and packed away in a cool box to keep fresh while you enjoy your day.

Once you’ve started cook­ing on the beach, peo­ple will mirac­u­lously start gath­er­ing round you, drawn in by the wafts of de­li­cious food grilling and the prom­ise of com­fort­ing warmth from the coals. And one fi­nal tip – al­ways take a bag of marsh­mal­lows with you. In my ex­pe­ri­ence, it mat­ters not a jot how great the feast be­fore was – there’s al­ways room for a few toasted marsh­mal­lows af­ter­wards.

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