Re: [MH-list] Barbeques

DABurleigh <daburleigh@...>

Advice please! For many years we used a small gas barbeque ....
We have looked at Beauclaire, Cadac etc but it seems to me that these are
really BBQ's at all, as they do not have coals.
We are lucky enough to have excellent conventional facilities in our van
and it is a
BBQ we need, at home we have a gas BBQ which cooks superbly. Can anyone
recommend a small one which is really good? Or any thoughts on
Beauclaire etc.?

Your query goes to the heart of a definition of a BBQ; it is a subject where
many have strong views (that's a euphemism, by the way).

You believe a "proper" BBQ must have coals or lava rock of some sort. On the
other hand, many would argue a gas BBQ (which you are after) is not a
"proper" BBQ at all! The same claim that only with charcoal/ briquettes can
you obtain the "real" BBQ taste.

At this point I must nail my colours to the mast and say that not only am I
a fan of gas BBQs both at home and away, I consider coals of any kind to be
entirely optional in achieving a BBQ taste, on the assumption, that is, by
BBQ taste one does not mean food tasting of carbon by virtue of either being
in intimate contact with the briquettes or courtesy of out-of-control

Indeed generally shows that, as one increases
in quality and price of gas BBQs, one moves from lava rock to ceramic
briquettes (last longer and easier to clean) to a carefully designed metal
bed devoid of any "coals". In all these methods, all that is needed is some
way of burning fat coming off the food so that it can be flooded by the
smoke generated.

Hopefully the BBQ design also allows scope for controlling flare-ups where
an excess of fat, or temperature, (usually both) causes flames to lick
extensively at the food, again converting it to pure carbon!

I have had a Cadac for over 13 years now, used heavily each year. I would
happily buy another. Before doing so, I would consider the Beauclaire, if
only to check out its crepe-making ability when compared with a cheap ring
burner I have plus heavy mild steel disc! A fellow camper has a Beauclaire,
but resented its cost and still uses a separate burner for crepes - last
summer on a site in the south of France he virtually had a little cottage
industry going selling crepes to the French. Talk about coals to Newcastle!
(pardon pun).

And if anyone is considering a gas BBQ for home, I can vouch for the design,
quality and value-for-money of the Sterling range available from the
web-site mentioned above. I've had mine, with not a coal in sight, for 2
years. I was in the shop again last Sunday - the couple whose business it is
are extremely helpful and patient on the phone to ensure you get the right
BBQ for you.


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