Cheeky Australians have launched a new hotline to help struggling Brits thrill with their grill, following a new study that reveals over half (55%) the nation are barbeque bunglers.
Charred sausages and burnt burgers are all too often on the menu as two thirds (70%) of Brits admit to overcooking.
At the other extreme, diners face danger from raw chicken as over a third (37%) have undercooked meat. With one in seven (14%) admitting to giving guests food poisoning from their BBQ blunders.
The new study of 2,000 Brits was commissioned by WesternAustralia.com, who have launched a new BBQ hotline to help struggling Brits ahead of the predicted scorching weather this weekend.
Brits will be able to book a one-to-one slot with barbecue master and celebrity chef Tony Howell, 9,000 miles away in Perth, Western Australia, who will be on hand to provide advice for those burning BBQ questions.
Frequent fails include dropping food (55%), not being able to light the barbie (54%) and forgetting to clean the grill (44%).
Other big BBQ blunders include not having enough food (39%), letting the grill go out (34%), starting a fire (27%) and mixing tongs for meat with those for vegetarian or vegan food (20%).
Overall, 55% admit to botching barbies with 38% lacking confidence in their cooking skills and 35% saying they feel under pressure providing food for guests.
Over a third (34%) are unable to judge when food is ready while 29% cannot cope with cooking for fussy eaters with complicated dietary requirements.
Brit’s Top Ten BBQ Blunders are revealed as:
1. Burning/overcooking food – 70%
2. Dropping food on the floor – 55%
3. Struggling to light the BBQ – 53%
4. Not cleaning the BBQ after previous use – 44%
5. Not greasing the grill before cooking food– 40%
6. Not having enough food to feed guests – 39%
7. Undercooking food and serving up raw meat to guests – 37%
8. Letting the BBQ go out whilst still cooking – 34%
9. Setting something in the garden on fire – 27%
10. Forgetting gas or coals to light the BBQ – 27%
More than a quarter (27%) dread their guests telling them how to grill and the same number (27%) have given up on a barbeque and phoned for a takeaway.
The research also found that fish, shellfish, chicken and vegetarian food give Brits most cause for concern.
Men need to up their game on the grill with 18% having poisoned their guests, compared to 9% of women.
With Perth being Australia’s sunniest city and Western Australia’s size giving them year-round summer, it’s no wonder the locals have Perth-fected their barbeque skills.
Tony Howell aka ‘Chef Tone’ is head chef at Cape Lodge in the Margaret River wine region, which has been ranked in the world’s top ten hotels for food by Conde Nast Traveller magazine.
The celebrity chef, whose TV credits include MasterChef Australia, will be on hand from 11am to 2pm on Saturday to offer advice to Brits.
Chef Tony Howell said: “Barbequing is all about fun and flavour. The smell of a delicious BBQ when the sun is out is pure bliss. So many people are guilty of cremating burgers, sausages, even veggies on the grill due to lack of knowledge and confidence. With a bit of care, attention, and with a few notes from Down Under, we’ll have you grilling like a pro in no time.”
Tourism Western Australia added: ‘We know great food and wine experiences are important to Brits at home and on holiday. Western Australia’s culinary adventures are one of the many reasons to visit Perth and beyond. With a booming economy, there are lots of jobs in WA’s hotels and restaurants, so those aged 18-30 can sign up for a working holiday and learn from the top chefs in city restaurants or farm-to-table wineries.
Available, this Saturday between 11am and 2pm, the BBQ Hotline will give Brits a chance to speak in real-time to top Aussie grill master, the award-winning chef, Tony Howell, who will be on the line to answer all their burning questions.
Tony has also tackled some of the top issues Brits face on the grill such as cooking fish and not burning food over at westernaustralia.com.
Those wanting to speak to Tony on the hotline should email their BBQ-related question to BBQHotline@WesternAustralia.com.
His top tips for staging a brilliant barbecue include:
0. Always start with a clean BBQ! Remember to clean properly after each use, it will make a huge difference the next time you fire up the barbeque
1. Don’t forget to oil your grill and I highly recommend using clarified butter on fish to avoid it sticking and getting a great flavour!
2. For those intimidated by chicken, choose thighs, keep the skin on and butterfly it for an even thickness and cook
3. Bring out the flavour in your veggies by coating them in fresh herbs, olive oil and vinegar! Try it out with some red onion halves, add a touch of brown sugar, salt & pepper for that moreish sweet onion taste.
4. With more than 45% of people apprehensive about cooking for vegetarians/vegans, opt for Tofu! It’s hard to burn and can be easily cubed and skewered – simply season, BBQ and serve with sweet pickle relish for a delicious dish.
The barbeque is a pivotal part of life down under, with free public BBQs in Western Australia’s many parks and beaches provided by local councils and outdoor kitchens common in restaurants and homes across the state, where it always summer somewhere.
Despite a high percentage of Brits calling Perth their home (1 in 10 Perth residents were born in Britain), even Christmas lunch is traditionally a seafood BBQ feast, with this Tourism Western Australia has set out to share their barbeque tips with mates on the other side of the world.