When the weather is sunny and we’re sizzling like sausages, that means it’s barbecue time. Is there anything nicer than lazing in the garden while the honey-and-herb chicken gently grills and the birds sweetly chirp overhead? The traditional English barbecue is beloved by all – young, old and in-between. Here’s how to make it low(ish)-stress and (relatively) easy:
Simple barbecue food – keeping the cooking relaxed
Barbecues look fun and effortless. They are not. Barbecues are fiddly. There is a lot to do. When you spot that heatwave on the horizon and hear the clamours of ‘Let’s have a barbecue!’ it will be so much easier if you’re already stocked up. There are some fantastic barbecue meatboxes available to order from local organic or free-range farms. Keep the freezer filled with ice, chopped herbs and puddings, and your larder stashed with sauces, mayonnaise and mustard, wine and sparkling water. All you will need to buy on the day is bread and salad. Don’t attempt too many hot dishes unless you’re sure you can handle it – just a couple of main dishes, with some dips, bread, salad and olives, will be fabulous.
Get your garden barbecue-ready with luxury outdoor furniture
Because of its tough, fade- and weather-proof fabric, Armadillo Sun beanbag furniture can live outside all summer long, which really helps when you throw together a barbecue – it’s one less thing to worry about when you can’t remember where you put the skewers or have run out of charcoal. Create a really comfortable set-up with some outdoor cushions and a rug.
Our Monaco modular bean bag chairs are perfect for informal dining. These unique chairs and ottomans, in chic grey, blue and navy tones, feature D-ring connectors which link the pieces together in various permutations to arrange sofas which can be as big or small as you like. It’s easy to add or take away pieces if you get more or fewer guests than you were expecting. The brand-new corner pieces allow you to create sociable corner sofas. We’ve also introduced some pouffes to the range – perfect for trays of drinks or condiments. Save the loungers for the post-lunch snooze!
All our luxury beanbag furniture is light, portable and comes with a strap, making it easy to shift about – from the shade to the sun and back again. In the heat of the day, place it under the shade of a tree or a cool veranda or pergola. You can buy some gorgeous parasols now, too, from contemporary cantilever ones to ones made from beautiful vintage fabrics. For a late afternoon/early evening barbecue, you can swiftly rearrange your furniture to catch the last warming rays of the sun.
The aftermath – how to clean up quick
Barbecues can be messy, especially if children are involved. If you’ve got some of our wipe-clean, stain-resistant furniture, it takes a bit of the stress away. All those drinks, sauces and salad dressings can be simply wiped off and stubborn stains can be cleaned away with a solution of mild detergent. Armadillo Sun furniture is handmade to last, with double-stitched, overlocked seams, and our fabric comes with a five-year guarantee, making it a sustainable investment that will give you and your family many summers of use. We wish you many happy barbecues! Try out one of our favourite recipes here:
BBQ butterflied chicken with honey and herbs
2 cloves garlic, crushed
¼ cup white wine vinegar
¼ cup olive oil
2 tbsp chopped coriander
1 tbsp honey
Rosemary sprigs, to garnish
1. Place the chicken on a chopping board, with the backbone facing up. Butterfly the chicken by inserting a heavy, sharp knife into the cavity and cut down the backbone. Open up the chicken with the skin-side down. Flatten out the breastbone. Cut the backbone from the chicken. Remove the ribs from the flesh.
2. Place the chicken skin-side up in a pan just large enough to hold it.
3. Combine the marinade ingredients in a mini blender and pour over the chicken. Cover and marinate for at least two hours in the fridge, turning over once.
4. Remove the chicken from the marinade and pat dry. Barbecue on a hot plate on medium heat, skin-side up, for about 15 minutes. Turn the chicken over, cover and cook for about 25 minutes or until cooked through, or the internal temperature is 74°C. Remove to a serving plate. Leave to stand for 10 minutes before carving. Garnish with rosemary sprigs.