BBQ season kick-off!
Last weekend, I officially launched this year's BBQ season with some friends. Finally, summer is upon us and it's time to throw some stuff on the grill. Today, I've got some meaty tips for your own early summer BBQ.
Don't use knife and fork on the meat until you've served it - don't give in to the temptation to poke or cut it during the grilling process because smaller pieces of meat will lose precious juices and end up too dry. A good way to test your meat is to use manual pressure. Choose the thickest part of the meat and press down with your finger. This is kind of like pressing your thumb against every finger of the same hand one after the other: you'll notice the difference in firmness and tension.
The meat is rare and bloody when pressing down on it will feel like pressing your thumb against your middle finger.
The meat is medium rare when pressing down on it will feel like pressing your thumb against your middle finger.
Medium well done
The meat is medium well done when pressing down on it will feel like pressing your thumb against your ring finger.
The meat is well done when pressing down on it will feel like pressing your thumb against your pinky finger.
If you're dealing with slightly larger pieces of meat, I'm recommending a meat thermometer, which is inserted in the thickest part of the meat. When the temperature reaches about 3-5° celsius below what it should be, you can take the meat off the grill (or out of the pan). It'll keep cooking sitting out at room temperature and the juices can distribute around the inside.
Basically, a good guideline is: your meat will have a more dense aroma if cooked over a high heat and is still juicy on the inside.
Today's recipes are two amazing side dishes that go wonderfully with meat: no-egg aioli and a recipe for olive butter.
- 220g mild, neutral vegetable oil
- 1 - 2 garlic cloves, to taste
- 75g milk at room temperature
- ¼ tsp salt, a little bit more for seasoning
- 1 tsp tarragon or dijon mustard
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 TBSP crème fraîche
Ingredients for olive butter:
- 30g black olives, pitted (e.g. Spanish Hojiblanca olives)
- 100g butter, cubed
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- ½ tsp lemon zest
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme, picked
- 1 pinch of salt
- Put a small jug on top of the mixing bowl lid of a Thermomix, weigh the oil and set aside. Put the garlic, milk, salt and mustard into the mixing bowl and mix for 10 seconds at 7, then scrape down the sides of the bowl.
- Attach the mixing blade. Stir the milk mixture for 2 minutes at 3.5 and at the same time slowly pour the oil onto the blade in a thin stream.
- Add lemon juice. Combine for a further 30 seconds at 3.5 and scrape down the sides of the bowl again.
- Add crème fraîche and mix for another 10 seconds at 3.
- Season the aioli with salt and serve immediately.
Preparation for the olive butter:
- Put the olives into the mixing bowl and chop for 4 seconds at 5. Spoon into a separate bowl.
- Add the butter, lemon juice, lemon zest, thyme and salt and stir until smooth for about 35 seconds at 4.
- Add the pitted, chopped olives and mix for 10 seconds at 3.
- Spread the olive butter onto a piece of parchment around 15cm in length, roll the parchment up into a tube, close up the ends and store in the fridge until solid. Slice as needed and serve.