10 unexpected uses for your BBQ

Enough with the boring burgers and steaks. This weekend, try putting salads or desserts on the grill.

Photo by Anna Williams. © 2010, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc. From Everyday Food, July/August 2010.

Before you limit your grilling repertoire to easy burgers and boring steaks, think again. Here are ten unexpected uses and recipe ideas for your BBQ in time for the long-weekend.

1. Grill your salad: Instead of the usual cold lettuce and vinaigrette, try tossing the salad on the BBQ for a rich and warm meal starter.

2. Don’t bake—barbeque your bread: Escape your overheated kitchen during the hot summer months and head outdoors to do your baking.

3. Get beyond “beer can chicken”: Succulent chicken drunk on a can of beer has become a staple of the summer BBQ. But there are other ways to pair fizzy drinks and poultry.

4. Fire up a sandwich: No need for a sandwich press or toaster when you already have a barbeque fired-up in your back yard.

5. Vegetarian grill: Though meat is synonymous with a barbeque, a firm tofu steak or even tofu-kabob can make a delicious and healthy substitute to more carnivorous fare.

6. Outdoor rice: In Spain, paella is often cooked outdoors over a grill. But even Indian lamb biryani can be taken outside.

7. Better than wood oven pizza: You don’t need to be in Italy for a classic wood oven pizza al forno. Your Canadian barbeque can finish a pizza margherita that rivals the stuff of the wood oven.

8. BBQ dessert: Avoid running the oven for hours to make your homemade sweets and bake them in the backyard instead. With the right tools, the results are the same (or better).

9. Go for grilled fruit: From spiced oranges to drunken strawberries, try finishing your meal with fruit from the grill for a smoky-caramelized flavour.

10. And if you must have a burger…: Here are suggestions that will get you out of your beef burger rut.

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