- Posted February 11, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Who taught you to love food?
BBQ or barbecue is a predominantly outdoor cooking method that also refers to the equipment the dish is prepared on. A trademark of authentic barbecues from the olden days is the use of charcoal, wood or other solid fuel that generate flame, heat and smoke which impart the distinct flavor to dishes. Strictly speaking barbecue refers to slow cooking with lower heat while grilling is usually faster done over a more intense heat. The two terms are commonly interchanged for most people.
Think barbecue and many reminisce 4th of July celebrations and American family weekend gatherings where dad fires up the grill and cooks steaks, hotdogs and burgers basted with sweet, savory, spicy marinades for the whole family. In hotels and resorts with poolside or seaside restaurants, weekend barbecues are offered as a buffet spread where diners select raw items and pass this to the cooks for grilling. The outdoor setting under the moon and stars makes it a perfect opportunity for a casual romantic date especially if there’s entertainment like a cultural dance or strolling minstrels.
Barbecues are not limited only to the outdoors as a variety of convenient equipment can now allow for grilling indoors. Some Korean and Japanese restaurants allow guests to grill their own food with the smoke generated suctioned up by a large vacuum hose-like contraption hanging from the ceiling. Diners here order a platter of a chosen item like beef, pork, chicken, seafood or a combination of all. Complimentary starters like kimchi, potatoes, salted fish come with the meal.
Innovative barbecues include the use of modern equipment, funky shaped skewers and of course unique ingredients not commonly served like snails and seashells that crack open on the grill and look like little aliens on your fork and exotic game like deer and wild boar.
Restaurants also offer innovative gimmicks that provide value for money. Some fast food joints have joined the barbecuing bandwagon and serve grilled pork and chicken in addition to its main burger and fries product line. Some restaurants that have become very popular with their barbecue specialties also sell their own special barbecue sauce concoction in a variety of flavors–mild, hot and extra hot.
Brazilians take their grilling very seriously and have taken this concept to other countries with the churrasco concept, usually an all-you-can-eat of different meats, seafood and vegetables with a buffet of salads, soups and dessert. Servers would go around from table to table each with a big skewer of a cooked item and offer to slice portions for diners. Meats and seafood items include various sausages, chicken parts, cut of beef, pork, lamb and large cuts of cuttlefish. Truly a meat lovers delight!