The AlpsBarbecuing is popular in Mediterranean countries. It is influenced by traditional Mediterranean cuisine. Olive oil is a key part of the Mediterranean barbecue style, as it is in the region’s cuisine. The most common items cooked are chicken, beef steaks, souvlakis/brochettes, halloumi cheese, and pita bread, and may be grilled, baked, or both. In addition, some dishes combine grilling with braising for more variety. Often, barbecue meat items are marinated with olive oil and citrus juice mixtures, and then garnished with various herbs and spices; basic persillade and several variations are often put on top of the meat.
A traditional cooking method of the French and Swiss Alps similar that has recently been commercialized is pierade or cooking meats on a hot stone, usually communally and directly on the serving table. This type of cooking is in no way limited to the Alps, but is associated with it and with other rustic or communal methods of cooking like fondue and raclette.
Germans are enthusiastic about their version of barbecue, grilling (“Grillen”), especially in the summertime. It is the one area of traditional home cooking that is a predominantly male activity. Germans grill over charcoal or, increasingly, gas, and grilled meats include all of the local sausage variations as well as steaks (especially marinated pork steaks from the shoulder) and poultry. Regional festivals feature grilled items ranging from eel to trout, whole sides of pork or beef, chicken, and duck. Smoking is common practice in German butchering, but pure smoke-based techniques have not yet entered popular practice. Barbecue variations are also popular among the immigrant communities in Germany, with notable traditions of outdoor grilling in Germany developed by immigrants and visitors from the United States of America, Turkey, Greece, other Balkan States, and among the German-speaking emigrants from the states of the former Soviet Union.
Barbecue in Scandinavia implements traits of traditional Scandinavian gourmet cuisines. In addition to more traditional meats such as chicken, beef, lamb, and pork, wild game are common, especially venison. A sauce made from Juniper berries is often put on top of the meats when served.
Shashlik is the Russian version of shish kebab, and like all other international variants, is cooked on a grill. Shashlik is usually made of lamb, but there can also be pork, beef, ground seasoned beef, chicken, and sturgeon shashliks.
United Kingdom and Ireland
In recent times, barbecue cook-off competitions are beginning to take place in the United Kingdom and Ireland, similar to those in the United States. Some of these barbecue competitions also allow teams from both countries to compete against each other. Similar competitions are also held in Canada, continental Europe, and Australia.Barbecuing is a popular al fresco cooking and eating style, common in both the United Kingdom and Ireland. Many homes in both countries have a barbecue, usually located in the home’s back garden. Most popular are steel-built “kettle” and range-style barbecues, with wheels to facilitate moving the barbecue. Due to the typically wet weather of the climate of the British Isles, during the autumn and winter, many British and Irish people store their barbecues in a garden shed or garage, although permanent brick barbecues are also common.
The most common foods cooked on a British-style barbecue are chicken, hamburgers, sausages, beef steaks, shish kebabs, and vegetarian soya or quorn based products, and can be grilled, baked, or a combination of both. Such vegetarian products require extra attention due to their lower fat content and thus tendency to stick, as well as their weaker structure due to the manufacturing process of such foods. Less common food items include fish, prawns, lobster, halloumi (cheese), corn-on-the-cob, squashes, potatoes, plantains, asparagus, beetroots, pork fillets, pork patties, and pork or beef ribs. Similar to the United States, barbecue sauce is sometimes spread onto the meat while it is cooking. All the major supermarket chains now offer a range of barbecue products, although availability is usually limited to the duration of the “barbecue season” (late spring to early autumn).
Barbecue in the UK is mostly influenced by traditional English, Scottish, and Welsh cuisines. However, as modern British cuisine as a whole is also heavily influenced by its multi-ethnic minority communities, British barbecue draws on traditions from Continental Western European, Scandinavian, and Mediterranean cuisines, and to a lesser extent, Middle Eastern, Asian, Oceanian, and Oriental cuisines. For example, the barbecue sauce may contain Juniper berries, and persillade may also be put on top of the meat as a garnish. Overall, British barbecue is similar to a mix of American, Australian, German, Scandinavian, and Mediterranean styles.
The Irish have their own tradition of barbecue which is influenced by traditional Irish cuisine. In addition to meat and vegetables, potatoes, a staple in Irish cuisine, are also cooked. Barbecue sauce is spread onto the meat while cooking, which can either be grilled, baked, or both. The Irish barbecue style is similar to a mix of American, UK, and Australian styles.