In addition to the method of preparing juicy fragrant dishes, the term barbecue is also called the stove or brazier itself. In addition, a barbecue is also an outdoor party, an indispensable part of which is tasting food cooked on charcoal. Such events have become widespread in North America. There is historical evidence that even the first colonialists organized barbecue parties with eating meat, alcohol and shooting from firearms.
What it is?
Many believe that America was the birthplace of barbecue. There are quite a few theories on this score, but one of the most reliable versions says that the prototype of the design appeared even among the Indians in the Caribbean. By the word "barbacoa" they called the grill on which the meat was fried. The Europeans, who discovered these islands in the 16th century, adopted this method of cooking meat, and at the same time the whole process of cooking, and called it "barbecue".
At first, the grill was used only for meat, but by now the range of products has expanded. Today, poultry, fish, vegetables, shellfish and even cheese are cooked on coals. All dishes fried in this way are distinguished by exquisite aroma and unique taste. Nowadays, mobile street modifications, which are convenient to take with you to a picnic, and stationary (from metal to stone) are very popular among consumers. There is a wide variety of gas and electric models that are easy to use, without the hassle of cleaning and other hassle.
So what is a barbecue oven. Scientifically, this is an open, flameless type cooking unit with free air circulation. The traditional design of the stove involves the use of a round metal or stone bowl. A grid is installed on it, it is advisable to use nickel-plated or steel. Modern braziers are equipped with specialized heating bowls at the bottom of the oven.
Experts recommend protecting the capacity of the brazier with a small side that covers the leeward part of the hearth - this prevents splashes of grease, coal and smoke on clothes and hands. For any barbecue oven, structural safety is critical. The heavier and more stable it is, the less likely it is to get thermal burns when working with coals. By the way, the highest quality barbecue models are lined with metal screens on the sides of the braziers, which contributes to double protection from burns.
Stationary models are installed on a base of steel and ceramics, which are fixed in the ground by a foundation. Portable options involve the use of metal pegs that strengthen the support of the installation during a picnic. In the process of cooking meat or fish, part of the coals burns out, and the combustion products flow down the metal walls and are taken out. Thanks to this, it is possible to maintain the required high temperature of the coals and the tank without constantly fanning the device with a fan, as is the case when working on the grill.
The metal grill has an adjustable mounting height as standard, with the difference between the highest and the lowest position being 4–5 cm. This device allows you to cook meat, poultry, fish and vegetables quite quickly with minimal effort. The dish turns out to be well fried on all sides, covered with a golden crust and juicy.
Both barbecue and grill are used for one purpose - to get grilled meat with an appetizing crust and a haze aroma.
These designs have several differences.
- Despite the similar operating principle and approximately the same device, the barbecue stove and the brazier differ in the part that is connected with the firebox mechanism. In the grill, the workpieces are heated due to the heat released during the burning of wood, as well as by the heat of hot coals. In a barbecue, heating is carried out by radiation of heat, since the air access is much weaker and concentrated on the inside of it.
- The heating of the air in a barbecue brazier itself is much softer due to the fact that a significant proportion of the heat is directed to heating the metal plate. Thanks to the grill, cold air drains away and immediately cools the surface of meat or other food. As a result of this treatment, fat and moisture remain inside the product, which is why barbecue steaks are especially juicy. In the grill, hot air directly affects the product, fat and moisture evaporate and are carried away along with the streams of hot gas. As a result, the dish turns out to be fried, and in order to achieve the same juiciness as on a barbecue, you should first wrap the pieces of meat in foil.
- The design of the barbecue stove provides for the presence of a metal bowl in which charcoals burn and smolder. In the old days, instead of coal, firewood was used, which was folded into a container and burned out to the state of coal. As soon as they filled the entire bowl completely, a metal grate was installed on top, and the process of cooking food began. To achieve a similar effect in the grill, the skewer has to be constantly turned over, only in this case it is possible to fry the meat at the same time and not dry it out.
- Of course, both stoves differ visually. The brazier is a rectangular installation, inside of which coals are smoldering, and the meat itself is placed on skewers. Barbecues are usually round in shape, and the meat is placed on the wire rack. In addition, a barbecue stove assumes a side around the brazier, thanks to which the air and smoke cushion is supported. And also in a barbecue, a strong hood is considered unacceptable, therefore there are holes in such a structure, but there are very few of them, unlike a barbecue.
Most modern barbecue models have gas or electric braziers , so you can cook a juicy aromatic dish in any weather, even in rain or snow. Thus, grill and barbecue differ in their functionality. The grill is suitable for spontaneous use, and if meetings with friends and barbecue have become a good tradition, then it is better to give preference to a barbecue. As for the taste of the dishes, everything here depends only on the cook, the meat itself and firewood. That is why the choice between barbecue and barbecue depends only on personal preferences, on the method of cooking meat and how often you plan to use the structure.
Varieties of designs
Today the assortment line of barbecue ovens includes a wide variety of models - from tourist mini-braziers to large stationary structures.
Portable models are lightweight and compact , they fold and unfold easily, so they can be taken with you on a trip, used in the garden, in the country or in a forest glade. Stationary models are heavy, most often installed on a foundation, so they are rather considered a small architectural form of a personal plot, they are optimal for frequent use by large companies. Mobile barbecues are devices on wheels, they cannot be transported over long distances, but within walking distance it is quite easy to deliver such an installation, and in addition, in bad weather, such products can be quickly rolled into a gazebo or under a shed.
The most popular are several oven modifications.
- A brazier is the simplest option. Here the grilles can be raised and lowered, as well as rotated, with the heat-reflecting covers integrated. The main difference between the brazier and the electric and gas options is its small dimensions and removable legs, so that the stove can be moved from place to place. This option is the most popular among consumers.
- The boiler is in high demand among buyers. Its advantage is its versatility: the design can be used as a smokehouse and an oven, and if you put a pan or a pan on the wire rack, you can cook almost any dish.
- Disposable models are a special kind of barbecue. They are usually made of sheet metal and are small in size. At the same time, the thickness of the metal is slightly thinner than that generally accepted for a brazier. At the end of frying, the pan almost completely burns out, so it is unlikely to be able to use such an installation repeatedly.
- The BBQ Cart is an out -of-the-box option that is a roaster on wheels. This is a rather complex and intricate setup that can be folded and unfolded.
All the models described are made of metal, usually stainless steel is used, less often cast iron. Brick is very often used in the production of barbecue, most often stationary models are made from it. Such buildings are popular with the owners of private cottages and mansions. They allow you to add any additional elements and equip the barbecue area in any style. You can create additional work surfaces, as well as equip a table for eating. Often, such installations have a roof and a protected chimney or are part of a large furnace complex.
Separately, you should pay attention to two barbecue models that allow you to cook tasty and mouth-watering dishes without using coal and firewood.
- Gas barbecues are popular in food service establishments, combine the functionality of a grill and barbecue, and can also work in conjunction with a tandoor.
- Electric ovens can be placed in houses and apartments, operate on AC power and are installed on the most ordinary table or on the balcony. By the way, you can even cook a burger on them.
Prices for barbecue models also fluctuate a lot, so everyone can choose a model to their taste and wallet.
In the production of barbecue ovens, metal or brick is most often used, less often concrete blocks or stone are used. Metal is most often used to create portable and mobile structures. Such models are lightweight, easily disassembled and assembled, transported without problems. In addition, the metal heats up very well and retains heat for a long time, so products (meat, fish or poultry) are fried evenly and rather quickly.
There are two types of steel most commonly used for barbecue: stainless and heat resistant. Stainless steel is the best option for hiking models that are used very rarely and for a short time. They are distinguished by their low weight and plasticity, although they burn out very quickly and undergo plastic deformation. It is not possible to use such constructions for more than 1–2 seasons. Heat-resistant steels are stronger and more durable due to the high chromium content in the alloy structure. At high temperatures, this metal oxidizes and creates a refractory surface, which makes the structure impervious to the ravages of heat. In addition, the structure of heat-resistant steel includes active components that make it resistant to rust, so the model can be operated outdoors and stored in an unheated room.
Less commonly, cast iron is used for making barbecue - this is a high-strength material that can last more than half a century, although such options are quite cumbersome and are not cheap at all.
A bowl-shaped barbecue brazier installed in a “cocoon” of refractory clay is considered a certain chic and a sign of aristocracy. Coal is poured inside the ceramic tank, and a brazier is attached on top and a grate is laid. The dishes on the clay barbecue are very juicy and aromatic. Such a stove can be carried from place to place, although it is most often used as a stationary model.
Fireclay brick or stone is also used as the main material for stationary models, but in recent years, the construction of a barbecue from concrete has become popular. They are used to make stationary ovens.
The advantages of concrete over brick are as follows:
- the blocks are larger in size, so the construction of the brazier is faster than when laying bricks;
- the structure of cellular foam blocks contains empty cavities, which significantly facilitate the structure, without reducing its quality;
- block masonry can be done on your own without the involvement of professional builders, since they are quite easy to drill and mill. This work can be done even by a person with little experience in decoration. Foam blocks, like aerated concrete, are distinguished by a porous structure, they are 80% filled with air, therefore, they are characterized by increased heat resistance, which allows you to maintain the temperature required for barbecue cooking for a long time throughout the entire cooking time;
- concrete blocks do not emit harmful and toxic substances, do not contain radiation. This fact is confirmed by the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation.
For a barbecue, you can use both gas blocks and foam concrete. The former are slightly stronger, but foam concrete materials are quite suitable for barbecue. Therefore, you can safely give preference to them, the more the price for foam concrete is much lower than the cost of gas blocks.
Dimensions and shapes
Barbecues, like barbecues, can be performed in a wide variety of forms. The rectangular shape is standard for such designs. It allows you to more steadily and rationally place the grate or skewers, provides the most uniform heating of meat and retention of heat inside the tank of the brazier.
The round shape is also popular with barbecue producers. It has no corners or joints, so it can be considered more durable and stable. In addition, the rounded shape gives an even heat, although the usable area is much smaller than in rectangular versions. Square models are often used in the production of hiking models. They are easier to fold, unfold and transport.
In addition, you can find triangular and even hexagonal models in stores. Triangular designs are popular for corner ovens, while hexagonal designs are more decorative than functional.
As a rule, there are no special requirements for the design of hiking models, but a brazier located in the courtyard of your own house plays the role of an important component of the entire garden landscape, so special attention is paid to its appearance. There are craftsmen who can create unique and truly inimitable options for a barbecue oven: a Finnish house, an American barbecue boat, a barbecue table, rustic-style braziers from improvised means that are no longer used in everyday life, but deserve the idea.
It is worth highlighting single modular and complex options.
- Built-in oven complex. It is a built-in structure made of stone, brick or concrete blocks, which includes an oven, smokehouse, barbecue and grill - this allows you to prepare almost any dish. However, the installation of such a complex requires mandatory experience in construction and drawing up a technical plan for the installation.
- Barbecue oven. In this case, we do not mean a portable model, but a stationary version, equipped with a sink and countertop. This complex most closely meets the needs of the owners of the gazebo for the manufacture of a wide variety of dishes.
- Stove-cauldron. This version is made for cooking stewed vegetables, pilaf, shurpa and meat; a hole for a cauldron is provided in the structure.
- Russian Stove. This design deserves special attention, in it you can not only cook kebabs and barbecues, but also cook soup, porridge, stew vegetables and even bake pancakes. It has a stylish design and embodies all ideas about Russian folk tales, looks good in country-style landscapes. It is better to entrust its construction to professionals, since such installations make special demands on the construction technology and safety standards of the structure.
There are quite a few barbecue manufacturers successfully producing roaster on the market. Among them are Russian companies and foreign enterprises. It is better to give preference to domestic firms if you need to find an option in the middle price segment. If quality and practicality are more important, then you should pay attention to the products of the world's leading brands.
- Weber is a world famous company founded by George Stephen, the inventor of the world's first spherical grill. It was he who created a new trend in the world of food preparation.
- Enders is a German company that produces grills, barbecues and barbecues under the brand name Enders Colsman AG. All products have been certified for compliance with the requirements of ISO 9001: 2008. They are distinguished by exceptionally high quality, impeccable style and practicality.
- Time Eco is a Ukrainian trade mark that brings together a wide variety of products for camping and tourism under its own banners. In addition to grills, barbecues and barbecues, cooler bags, beach goods and dishes are created here. The barbecue of this manufacturer visually resembles a green egg; in terms of its functionality, the structure combines a grill, barbecue, barbecue, smokehouse, oven and tandoor. The installation warms up very quickly and is ready for use 10 minutes after the ignition of the coals. Barbecues from this manufacturer allow you to smoothly adjust the temperature level, contribute to the economical consumption of chips, have a convenient grate and spacious pallets.
- Clatronic. The homeland of this company is China. The company has successfully launched the production of lightweight electric barbecues. The unit does not heat up and is safe for use in a home or apartment.
- Doorz is a domestic manufacturer offering barbecues, grills and barbecues in the economy segment. The products are popular and are in constant demand among the owners of summer cottages and travel enthusiasts.
- Megagrill. The enterprise is engaged in the production of a series of barbecues. The highlight of the assortment line are automatic braziers that run on batteries. These are prefabricated models that fit easily into a small case and are freely transported in the trunk of even a small car. The same manufacturer is famous for the release of transformer grills and ceramic barbecue models.
- Primo specializes in fired refractory clay models. The presented options combine the functions of a barbecue, barbecue, grill and oven.
How to do it yourself?
It is perhaps a sin for the owners of personal household plots not to have stationary and portable models of barbecues and barbecues in their household. Stores offer the widest selection of welded metal products. If the owner of the site has any skills in welding metal or erecting brick structures, then it will not be difficult for him to build a barbecue brazier with his own hands.
On all barbecues, the possibility of adjusting the height of the grate relative to the coals is certainly provided. Such braziers do not create artificial draft, since it is believed that the slower the heated air moves, the higher the taste of the product. Of course, you cannot do without a chimney, but the pipe can be low - up to 1.5 m from the brazier to the upper edge.
The most common type of oven is a brick barbecue on a concrete foundation. The stove is laid out in the form of the letter "P", its height is about 1 meter, and a cone-shaped chimney is mounted above the gratings. A more complex structure is built in the shape of the letter "E". The lower part of the installation, which plays the role of a woodpile, can be equipped with gas silicate bricks, since the elements must be made of fire-resistant material. Even before the start of construction, you should think over all the procedures, smoke collectors and other details so as not to make changes already during construction work - this can lead to damage to the material and unnecessary costs.
You can independently equip a barbecue from a metal profile, pipes are usually used. This gives rigidity to the structure and also saves on the use of OSB boards. A corrugated board or metal tile is installed as a roof. Self-tapping screws are used to fasten metal sheets to the crate. Such a veranda, located near a metal fence, can form a single architectural stylistic composition with it.
Where to place?
Most often, stationary structures are placed in a gazebo, this not only protects the stove from the adverse effects of atmospheric phenomena, but also creates a comfortable recreation area for the whole family.
Placing a barbecue outside in gazebos requires the following rules:
- the size of the arbors should be such that the stove is reliably protected from gusts of wind and oblique rain;
- the foundation of the barbecue must be above the melt water level. This is especially true when it comes to structures in which a clay-sand mixture is used as a solution;
- there must certainly be free space around the oven. From the firebox to the wall of the arbor must be at least 3 m, and from the other sides - at least 1 m;
- the calculation of the dimensions of the installation depends entirely on its functionality. The construction of a massive furnace increases the load on the gazebo, and accordingly, its wear increases. If the oven has additional functions, for example, smokehouses, which are used regularly, it is better to use removable arbors;
- in the absence of the possibility of organizing the supply and discharge, it is worth taking care of the drainage equipment;
- gazebos with any braziers (brazier, barbecue, smokehouse or grills) should be placed away from dense bushes, trees, gas and power lines;
- it is advisable to lay out the area near the oven with paving slabs and equip a comfortable seating area.
Operating tips and care
In conclusion, it is worth paying attention to the following recommendations that allow you to use the barbecue with greater safety and comfort:
- if you plan to regularly make barbecue throughout the season, you should give preference to models with a lid;
- if the personal plot is small, then it is recommended to pick up a folding installation;
- it is worth paying special attention to the fuel tank, because there are direct and stove options. In the first case, firewood or charcoal is placed directly under the grate, this method is used to quickly prepare the simplest dishes. The stove method involves placing coal at the edges, while the food is baked thoroughly, but cooking also takes about an hour;
- regardless of whether you are using a stationary model or a portable one, you should buy one in which the grille is removed. One-piece structures do not allow replacing individual elements during burnout or plastic deformation of the latter;
- for rare trips to nature, a disposable barbecue grill is optimal.
Metal barbecues can be very stylish, especially when decorated with forging elements.
Stone and brick braziers are classics that testify to the impeccable taste and high status of the home owners.
The Finnish house is very relevant in any garden landscape.
Traditional Russian stoves have a special place. They are distinguished by their originality and functionality. This option will decorate any site.
And some more interesting options.
For the features of choosing and installing a barbecue, see the following video.