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Learn to BBQ like the professionals with Weber Grill Academy

August 4, 2017

Food & DrinkLifestyle | by Baldwin Ho


It has become de rigueur for Londoners to celebrate the few summer days we have by hosting an outdoor barbecue. There is no better way to learn how to host the perfect summer barbecue than from the masters themselves from the Weber Grill Academy. They host classes at over one hundred venues across the world working with local venues to exhibit the best that Weber grills have to offer from gas to charcoal.

We recently went along to one of their masterclasses at The Jolly Gardeners at Earlsfield. This welcoming, friendly pub has a kitchen headed up by former Masterchef winner Dhruv Baker, and there is a dedicated outdoor barbecue deck area.

This interactive, hands-on course is a great way to learn the best of American barbecue cuisine; all the dishes are made from scratch and you are taught to make a complete meal including cooking different types of meats, side dishes and even something for those with a sweet tooth.

The first course was the most lip-smackingly irresistible: Spicy, crusted buffalo wings with gorgonzola dip. It was crunchy and had an explosion of flavors from the dip as well as the marinade which included Dijon mustard, Tabasco, smoked paprika, Worcestershire sauce and maple syrup. Using a charcoal barbecue with an indirect cooking method helped to add an extra layer of smokiness to the wings.

The main courses were two meat-heavy dishes: Low ‘n’ slow smoked brisket and stacked ribs. The masterclass does teach you everything from scratch including removing the membrane from the ribs because it does make the final product less tough and chewy. Although I wasn’t a fan of their Texas dry rub; I would have preferred a wet rub, which draws moisture in from the rub while charring the outside of the meat.

The power of the Weber equipment really came to the fore when cooking the brisket dish. Using the Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker, you can infuse different smoky flavors into the meat whilst you prepare for the long smoke. In this case, we used cherry wood chunks. The total time for this dish requires a BBQ session of eight hours. Thankfully the organizers had pre-arranged some smoked briskets, so we didn’t have to dine close to midnight.

What was a real eye-opener, was the fact so many dishes can benefit from the Weber barbecue treatment including mac ‘n’ cheese with truffle oil and bacon chocolate brownies. If you want to impress your friends and family this summer, make sure you attend a Weber Academy cookery class first before inviting them over for your outdoor barbecue extravaganza.

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