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Another shrimp

June 25, 2010

It was that time again. The excitement that it always brings was palpable; you could smell it in the air and if you listened closely hear the quiet whisper it makes. Like someone trying to have a discrete conversation in the library, it was hard to ignore.

With eager anticipation in the hope that this day could bring, the wish for it to be a glorious time and one to remember, is contrasted to the dread and the realisation that the great day you have been looking forward to could fall victim to the fickle weather. It was that time again.

Time to bring out the barbecue, light it up, and breathe in the sweet and smoky aroma of cooking on charcoal. The first barbecue of the summer can create memories that will last throughout the season and beyond. Looking forward to my first barbecue I only wanted to be left with the great memoires shared with friends, and a full stomach of quality food cooked in the blazing sunshine. I did not want to find at the end of the day that there were somehow enough burgers left over to feed a small private army but not a single bap, roll or sesame bun to keep them company.

Knowing my friends were coming round tomorrow, for what would be mine and their first BBQ of the season I wanted to make as few mistakes as possible, and all being well, at the end of the day to have fed only them and not the bin. It was the time to have a love food hate waste barbecue.

The night before the big day, I was like a foreign manager making the preparations for the knock out stages of a large international football tournament. Trying to get familiar with the key players, the types of food that would be needed, the BBQ and Joe Coals that would be asked to show off their skills in the summer sunshine. Thinking also of the formation that these players would be asked to perform, do I start with the classic of four sausages four burgers and a couple of shrimps up front (4-4-2), before switching to a less conventional diamond formation of four vegetable kebabs, three chicken drumsticks, a solitary rainbow trout taking an attacking position in the BBQ midfield with a couple of corn on the cobs holding their own up front (4-3-1-2). Like any manager I had questions that needed to be answered, some questions including the numbers that I would be cooking for, and therefore the amount of food I would need would not be answered until the BBQ had begun.

The time had come. The next day the food had been bought, the barbecue was lit, the sun was shining, and all that was needed was for the friends to arrive and the beautiful game of cooking outside in the sun could begin.

As it turned out there would be a few less people than expected and as a result a bit more food than needed. A disaster loomed and it looked like the quality food could be heading for an early exit to the bin if nothing could be done, with more around than needed. With this stage set a somewhat ironic hero stepped up to the plate to save the unused barbecue food from the sudden death dilemma. On one of the hottest days of the year so far, with the barbecue outside hotter still it was the old faithful and constantly cool freezer that saved the day. The sausages and burgers that were not needed got an instant transfer from straight from the fridge where they were waiting into the freezer. Their time will come again.

A winning partnership was formed with the help of the recipe finder with some of the peppers and aubergines that did not get a cap on the barbecue, this time. Their time came later in the week in the form of a mid week moussaka.

When the sun is high and you think that it is that time again, to get the barbecue on the go, have some friends round and enjoy this season take time to have your own game plan. Use the tools available to you, if you need to consult on how much food you will need use the portion planner to guide you. Remember that if you are not going to use the food you have for your barbecue then your freezer could help you out or the recipe finder can suggest other meals you can make with the ingredients you have.

When the time comes again, to have a barbecue, have a Love Food Hate Waste barbecue.

It was that time again, it always is.

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