After some time off I’ve really made up for it this week. As it was UK BBQ week I decided to cook every category on each day.

Day one was “fire up the bbq”, I couldn’t wait to get cooking again after being away so I went to The Saffron Fish Co for some prawns. Whilst I was there I thought I’d give scallops a go - I hadn’t tried them before but my wife loves them so they wouldn’t be wasted. I ended up making a kind of jambalaya much to my wife and mother-in-law’s delight.

Day two was “Sunday roast with pudding” so I went to Gilbey, our local butchers, for some pork. I think pork as a roast is very underrated as its often over shadowed by beef or the ease of a chicken. Since getting the Grden Grill I’ve really loved cooking with the rotisserie so a pork loin joint was the perfect cut to get some great crackling (apart from the burnt bit where I forgot to turn it back on after testing the temperature!) The pork came out great, and I cooked it along with roast new potatoes, parsnips and broccoli. Then came dessert. I had seen a recipe a while ago for orange cakes, so I got some good sized oranges from the market in our town, cut the tops off and hollowed them out. Hannah then made the cake mixture and we poured it into the oranges. I was so impressed with how well they came out, the flavour of orange with the vanilla cake mix worked so well. And apparently they looked good in the opinion of one of my favourite instagram accounts - Sue Stoneman - as she picked me as the winner of the Lumberjaxefood competition. I won a choice of two rubs from Lumberjaxe food and a voucher! So thank you both so much! Check out Sue’s account for some fantastic cooks and inspiration and head over to Lumberjaxe food for some great bbq rubs.

Then onto day three: “meat free Monday”. This gave me the opportunity to try a bean burger recipe I found recently. I do love cooking meat but actually enjoyed these burgers as an alternative. Although I couldn’t wait for the next cook - “winner winner chicken dinner”. So for day four I decided to get my favourite toy out again and cooked a rotisserie chicken. I think I’ve said it before but in my opinion this is the best way to cook a chicken.

Day five was one of my favourite cooks of the week - pizza. I really don’t think we will get a takeaway pizza again, on the kamado joe junior it so quick and easy. It tastes amazing too!

The theme for day six was “luscious lamb”. Whilst I was in the butchers at the weekend I bought some amazing looking pieces of lamb rump. On two of them I just put a small amount of olive oil and salt, then for the other two I used some Tandoori masala rub with some yoghurt.

Friday should have been “seafood from around the isles”, but I had a little experiment planned with Alex - The Hunter Gatherer. I’ll write more about this in next weeks blog but hopefully you saw the live video. We set a challenge of buying a family meal for four for under £10, with everything being bought or sourced locally. Check out the video on The Hunter Gatherer’s page to see how we got on. The fish that would have been cooked on Friday evening will now become Sunday lunch.

Day eight was “best of beef”, so I went back to Gilbey butchers and they had the most amazing looking piece of cote de boeuf. I really couldn’t say no. I reverse seared the steak as this is by far my favourite way of cooking steak. Cooked indirect until the internal temperature was 52C I then pulled it from the grill for a rest. Meanwhile I got the grill up high ready to sear on the cast griddle. I gave it two minutes each side turning 90 degrees half way to make the classic cross pattern.

Then it was onto the last day and the theme was “your favourite dish” this for me would ideally be a picanha . As we had steak the day before and had planned to have some friends over so I was going to do a chicken swarama. Unfortunately our friends couldn’t make it so I’ve put the chicken in the freezer for another day. I had some ribs in the freezer so I thought I'd give them a go. Who doesn’t love ribs?! Somehow I’ve made it this far into my bbq’ing journey without trying the 3-2-1 method. The ribs hadn’t quite defrosted enough so it ended up being a 2-2-1 method but it still worked great. We had decided to have a bit of a blow out for our last meal of UK bbq week. So I thought I’d give loaded fries a go. We only had frozen chips in the freezer so they had to do. I cooked them on the kamado joe junior as the ribs were on the Grden Grill at a much lower temperature. I wasn’t sure it was going to work on the BBQ but as it is essentially an oven I hoped it would. I found a recipe online for some cheese sauce and cooked some bacon. Some jalapeños and spring onions over the top and it was most definitely a winner.

So thank you to all involved in UK BBQ week, I had a great time cooking everyday and can’t wait for next year.

That’s about it for a very busy week, look out for next week’s blog when I write about our little local experiment.

Stu - Bbqfestu