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Brits are ditching traditional barbecue food in favour of ‘posh nosh’ such as marinated meat, exotic salads and stuffed vegetables, as researchers have found that millions are turning their backs on plain sausages and burgers and are instead serving up grilled fish, succulent steaks and homemade coleslaw to impress their friends.
More than three quarters of Brits are now making more of an effort at barbecues – with one in five staying away from traditional burgers and sausages altogether.
Instead, 22% opt for more unusual types of meat such as venison or duck to liven up their outdoor feast, while a third will only buy good cuts of her bed or marinated meat.
Another 21% rely on exotic foods and home-made salads and 34% spend plenty of time on the presentation to impress their guests.
61% of Brits also use marinades (or even make their own at home) to make their food stand out from the rest.
A spokesman for Kikkoman, which carried out the study, said:
‘’There was a time when barbecues would consist of a burnt sausage in a roll, a plain burger with processed cheese slices and a bit of salad on the side but it seems people are being more creative when it comes to their outdoor feasts and the traditional food no longer makes the grade.
‘’Rather than simply slapping a few burgers on the coals, hosting a barbecue now means taking your time in the kitchen to make sure you produce the tastiest food possible.
‘’Hosts are now going the extra mile to make sure their guests enjoy their food by making burgers and salads from scratch instead of buying them ready-made, and marinating fresh meat for hours beforehand.’’
The study of 1,000 Brits found that 67% consider themselves to be an adventurous cook when it comes to barbecues, with 58% declaring they have had enough of having the same old barbecue food time and time again.
A massive nine in ten people enjoy having something different to burgers and sausages on occasion.
Half of those polled also said they would feel disappointed if they went to a barbecue where only hotdogs and burgers were served – with almost one in five even refusing to go altogether if they knew it was only going to be cheap, plain food on offer.
So, it’s not surprising that one in five are trawling through recipe books and cooking websites to find the best dishes to serve up at their event.
Almost a third even admitted to competing with friends and relatives to see who can offer the best and most varied food at a barbecue, with 52% saying celebrity cooking shows and books have inspired them to be more adventurous.
The study also revealed:
- Marinated chicken breasts are the most popular ‘posh nosh’ to be served at a barbecue;
- They were followed by marinated steaks, meat and vegetable kebabs and homemade potato salad;
- Jacket potatoes completed the top five, while homemade burgers came sixth;
- Prawn skewers, homemade coleslaw, marinated ribs and tuna pasta salad made up the remainder of the top ten.
Other foods to feature in the list included barbecued fish, stuffed peppers or mushrooms and grilled halloumi.
A spokesman for Kikkoman added:
‘’ Marinades have really come into their own in converting a simple meat into a more exotic offering.
‘’For instance, Kikkoman Teriyaki Marinade, a blend of soy sauce, wine and spices can transform plain chicken in as little as 30 minutes, taking it up to the sophisticated level of taste that guests now expect.
‘’Our website is packed with recipes with the barbecue ones being particularly popular.”
Top 20 foods to cook at barbecues
1. Marinated chicken breasts
2. Marinated steaks
3. Meat and vegetable kebabs
4. Potato salad
5. Jacket potatoes
6. Homemade burgers
7. Prawn skewers
8. Homemade coleslaw
9. Marinated ribs
10. Tuna pasta salad
11. Marinated pork chops
12. Barbecued fish
13. Cous Cous salad
14. Marinated lamb
15. Cajun chicken
16. Stuffed peppers
17. Grilled halloumi
18. Stuffed mushrooms
19. Five bean salad
20. Tuna steaks