27 August 2011

It's almost barbecue season

The fine, warm weather over the last week or so reminded me that one of the greatest pleasures of a long Aussie summer is standing over a scalding barbecue in the backyard blackening a row of sausages and cremating sliced onions.

When daylight saving starts, barbecues across the country will be wakened from their winter hibernation and prepared for the summer cooking season. No matter what your barbecue is - an iron plate over smouldering coals, a single burner hibachi or a full on outdoor kitchen - now is the time to do a little routine cleaning and maintenance to keep your barbecue operating safely for the summer cooking season.

Pull it all apart, clean each part thoroughly and put them all back again. You can buy replacement parts for those burnt-out burners and grill plates from most hardware shops or go straight to the manufacturer and ask if they sell spare parts.

Check the gas bottle and connections (if it's a gas barbecue) to make sure they are working properly and everything is safe to use.  Gather your cooking tools and make sure they are ready to go.

Then, after all that work, give the barbie a trial run. Slice some onions, throw on some snags, butter some bread and enjoy your first sausage sandwich of the season.

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