In the month of May, it’s time to truly embrace the start of summer with Barbecue – or barbeque – month! Barbecue month was made to observe and celebrate the wonders of the barbecue grill, BBQ sauce and everything related.
A spectacular and delicious way of cooking meat, this age-old culinary technique is ready and waiting to be discovered in the month of May. And for those who are in a much sunnier part of the world, it’s certainly a good excuse to get friends and family around to share the experience!
History of National Barbecue Month
Humans have been cooking meat over an open flame for centuries, but exactly where the idea of cooking meat over a grill came from isn’t quite clear. Supposedly, when Columbus discovered the Americas, he found that many of the natives were roasting meat over a wooden grill. This would give the meat a delicious smoky flavor as it cooked, which may have been where the idea for the tradition began.
Today, it’s such a popular method of preparing meat that there’s a whole range of barbecue cookers it is possible to get a hold of – and plenty of different styles as well. Small ones can often be seen in homeowners’ backyards, where they are perfect for cooking for small gatherings of family or friends. Barbeque grills on a larger scale or in commercial settings can be so big that they can cook an entire hog!
If there is one place where having a barbecue is most popular, it is probably in the United States. It’s not uncommon there to find that having barbecue is not just kept to one season. (This is the opposite as the UK, where the barbecue grills tend to only come out during the summer months.) Also, it’s important not to forget that throwing food on the “barbie” is certainly a pastime “down under” in Australia!
All year-round, in many parts of the US, as well as other parts of the world, it’s possible to get access to deliciously smoked and barbecued meat. And if there’s a public celebration, it’s most likely that there are probably going to be barbecue grills raging in order to feed the masses.
Because of the fact that it’s situated at the beginning of the summer months (at least in the northern hemisphere), the month of May makes a lot of sense as the time to celebrate all things related to the barbecue! Spring is in full swing by then, the weather is warming and it’s the perfect time to get the grill cleaned up and ready to go, especially if it has been in storage over the winter months.
How to Celebrate National Barbecue Month
Since barbecuing is not a difficult method of cooking, this is a great month for anyone to try it out – even those who are not really much of a cook! Consider these ideas for joining in and celebrating National Barbecue Month:
Host a Backyard Barbecue
It’s time to dust off the old barbecue, get those friends and family around, and get ready to enjoy a great big feast. It doesn’t matter if it’s an all out event with cool decorations and live music, or just a simple gathering of friends with paper plates and a cooler full of drinks, the main attraction is the grilling! So grab those tongs, marinate some meat, fire up the grill and get to cooking.
Check on the internet to find some great barbecue recipes, and make sure there’s something for vegetarians to sink their teeth into as well! Throwing a pile of corn on the cob, zucchini, squash, veggie kebabs, eggplant or even brussel sprouts on the grill is super tasty and also healthy.
Try Some New Barbecue Ideas
In honor of National Barbecue Month, this might be just the time to change up the kind of fuel that is used. Move from just the standard charcoal briquettes and lighter fluid to something more interesting. For a more natural fuel option, consider using Hardwood Lump Charcoal, which usually contains no fillers or chemicals.
Wood pellets are an option that provide the food with interesting flavors, depending on the type of wood used. Wood pellets made from trees such as cherry, apple, hickory, mesquite and even cedar will give the food a delicious taste. Plus, many people find a special wood pellet grill to be an option that is less messy than the black soot of charcoal.
Try Making Homemade BBQ Sauce
Of course, making sure there’s some homemade BBQ sauce to hand to keep things authentic is a vital part of any barbecue experience! The styles and flavors of barbecue sauce truly do run the gamut, from sweet and honey-flavored to spicy jalapeno, and pretty much everything in between!
Here’s one basic barbecue sauce that almost anyone can manage works well in the kitchen and can be adjusted based on individual preferences. Those who like it less sweet can use a bit less brown sugar. And for a spicy kick, feel free to add some jalapeno juice or
Simple Barbecue Sauce Recipe
- 1 ½ c. catsup
- 4 T. brown sugar
- 2 T. white wine vinegar
- 1 T. Worcestershire sauce
- 5 t. paprika
- 1 t. cayenne pepper (more or less, based on preference)
Toss all of the ingredients in a bowl, stir, and pile generously on top of all kinds of delicious foods for the perfect celebration of National Barbecue Month!