5 Great Breads for the Barbecue

Published on 1st May 2013

By Leila El-Dean

Dare we say it, the forecast for the week is looking good and it may finally be time to break out the barbecue.

But when you are sitting in the garden and lolling in the sunshine, don't forget your beloved bread maker. It can make all the difference to any outdoor feast.

1. Focaccia

Think Spanish tapas, think olives, dipping breads and gorgeous salads. Mouth watering morsels that taste even better when accompanied by home made Focaccia.

focaccia bread

Focaccia can be mixed using the pizza setting (image source: Wikipedia)

The best thing about this type of bread is that it can be mixed on the pizza setting in your bread maker for about 45 minutes before your guests arrive. Leave it to rise for half an hour or so, add a few extras and then you can whack it in the oven when the drinks start flowing for some gorgeous nibbles while you are waiting for the main event.

For an added bonus, throw a chorizo on the barbecue while the coals are still flaming, cut into small slices and serve with the warm bread. Sensational and great for that one memorable day when the sun finally comes out in Blighty!

2. Ciabatta

A good Ciabatta makes a wonderful contribution to any outdoor cooking event. As it needs a couple of hours to bake, it can be prepared well in advance so that you are not tied to the kitchen when the guests arrive.

ciabatta bread

Ciabatta: Great for BBQs! (image source: Wikipedia)

For best effect use sliced Ciabatta instead of a plate for a good piece of steak from the fire.

Add the onions and relish and even throw the salad on top. It looks fantastic, tastes amazing and saves on the washing up too!

3. Pull Apart Bread

Though many are used to 'tear and share', pull apart is a bit more sophisticated as it usually prepares individual little sections for each person to simply pull apart (see, the clue is in the name!).

When using this type of bread for the summer sun, ensure that you choose a recipe that has flavour and moisture so that you don't have to worry about adding butter afterwards.

A great recipe is the Pesto Parmesan Pull-Apart which we get from Anne Sheasby's Breadmachine Bible. It's soft, it's sweet and absolutely delicious with a nice Italian white in the garden.

4. Flat Breads

If you are livening up your barbecue with some kebabs or maybe some ribs, then flat breads are the perfect way to serve them.

When the meat is cooked, remove all the bones and skewers and display next to a pile of delicious home made flat breads.

Serve with tzatziki, yoghurt or other fresh sauces, a green salad and some fresh herbs, Let your guests roll them up themselves into fantastic little food parcels and you have a flavour sensation like no other.

If you like heat in your food, you can always add some spice to the meat, but by adding cardamom or fennel seeds to the flat breads themselves you can create a full flavour that everyone will adore.

5. The Good Old Basic White

Whatever you do, when it comes to the traditional British Bar-b, bangers and burgers are always top of the pops, so make sure your bread is just as good.

bread rolls

Great for suculant sausages. Mmm... (image source: Wikipedia)

Anyone with a bread maker usually has a favourite soft roll recipe and this is the time to whip it out and get working.

And the best thing is, when you are making the rolls yourself, you can make sure they fit the size and shape of your meat perfectly, so there are no unsightly over hangs.

If you are intending to make the most of the sun, why not make up a few batches of dough in your bread machine and freeze them, so that you are ready anytime the sun decides to strike.

So now is the time to go ahead and get baking. We may only have a few days of sun this year but, boy, are we going to make the most of it!

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