We have all heard so much about it, most of us love it and feel their mouths watering just from the very thought of it.... It smells deliciously... What am I talking about? Have you guessed?
We have all heard so much about it, we have all eaten it, smelled, it seen it , most of us love it and feel their mouths watering just from the very thought of it.... It smells deliciously, it can be smoked, it can be juicy even if it is well done....and even vegetarians or vegans are not left over.... Unfortunately if you live in an apartment or in some North European country you can only have it in a restaurant or in an open-air event, in short not whenever you wish! Have you guessed? What am I talking about?
BBQ, oh yes! Barbecue, barbecue or more informally BBQ or barbies (so many different words) when used as a noun can refer to: the cooking method itself, the meat (or other ingredient) cooked this way, the cooking apparatus/tool used (the barbecue grill ), or to a social event based on this type of cooking.
When used as a verb, i.e. "barbecuing" it means preparing/cooking, usually outdoors, by smoking the meat/fish over wood or charcoal. It is usually done slowly over low, indirect heat and the food is flavored by the smoking process, while grilling, a similar cooking technique, is generally done a lot more quickly over moderate-to-high direct heat that hardly produces smoke (Wikipedia).
But have you wondered why it has become so popular or why it is considered a reason to get together with friends? And most importantly, do you know where you can enjoy it everyday? Yes, I really mean it, every day during your next holiday! Just read through the whole article and you will find out all the answers and much more....
So, what makes barbecuing so liked today and why do we associate it with gatherings? It probably comes from its origins, when it was first used by native groups (It is believed that the word barbecue originates from Haiti and was used by the Taino Indians) and this idea of getting together around the "fire", the BBQ, with friends and relatives even nowadays gives us the idea of something common,something festive, something we share... Why? In a way it brings people back to their roots, providing more than just a cooking experience but quite often an escape from civilization and brings us closer to nature. Thus barbecues continue to be a very popular and easy way for socializing, celebrating, relaxing, enjoying...
And before I continue sharing some more facts about barbecues and barbecuing, as already promised, I will reveal to you those places where you can enjoy barbecues every day, whenever you wish , the way you wish them: find them out here
But that is not all....I know you love it but do you really know what barbecue is and how various it can be?
Barbecue is used in many areas around the world and therefore it varies from place to place. Even the word Barbecue itself has different meanings in British and American English. However, the longest tradition of barbecuing remains the North American one and particularly the southeastern region of the United States (between Texas, Oklahoma., Missouri, Kentucky, Virginia, the Gulf of Mexico, the Atlantic Ocean on the east).
Barbecues are traditionally held outside and can be used for any occasions and on every day. Although today barbecues held in different geographic areas vary the cuisines all hold the same concept of cooking outside and over a fire.
The ingredients used for BBQ also vary, although the main one is the the meat (starting from pork and going through veal, beef, pork..) we can also barbecue fish and different vegetable.
Different words, different meanings, different ingredients, even different...cooking techniques: Smoking, roasting, braising...which one is your favorite?
Smoking, if you like the smoked taste then you can enjoy not only meat or fish but even cheeses and vegetables on a BBQ. Smoking is the original technique that uses smoke (usually from burning wood) to flavor and cook at low temperatures and considerably longer cooking times (several hours).
What about roasting - another technique for which you will need a masonry barbecue; it allows for an open flame but cooks more quickly and uses convection to cook with moderate temperatures for an average cooking time of about an hour.
Or why not braising (my favourite) - the technique that combines dry heat charbroil-grilling directly on a ribbed surface and braising in a broth-filled pot for moist heat. A gas or electric charbroil grill are the best choices for barbecue-braising. When choosing this technique, cooking occurs at various speeds, fast at first then slowing down, then speeding up again and thus lasting for a few hours.
There are two advantages to barbecue-braising; it allows browning of the meat directly on the grill before the braising. It also allows for glazing of meat with sauce and finishing it directly over the fire after the braising. This effectively cooks the meat three times, which results in a soft, textured product that falls off the bone. The time needed for braising varies depending on whether a slow cooker or pressure cooker is used; it is generally slower than regular grilling or baking, but quicker than pit-smoking.
And since most people think that BBQ is for the meat and fish lovers, here is one of my favourite veggie and even vegan BBQ recipe for a delicious ending:
Tofu and Vegetables Skewers
300 g diced tofu
- 4 Roman zucchini cut into medium slices
- 1 red pepper cut into medium pieces
- Cherry tomatoes
- long wooden sticks (leave them to soak in cold water for about 20 minutes)
For the marinade:
- 4 tablespoons of soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons of lemon juice
- 1 clove of minced garlic
- olive oil
Mix the ingredients for the sauce to prepare a homogeneous compound in which the vegetables and tofu will be marinated (soaked ). Use a fairly large bowl. Once the marinade sauce is ready, soak the vegetables and tofu in it for at least a couple of hours, occasionally turning them from one side to another. Once the vegetables and tofu are well marinated, proceed by piercing them on the special sticks alternating pieces of tofu with zucchini and peppers. At this point, your skewers are ready to be grilled.
Cook them on a barbecue for about 15-20 minutes, turning them often and brushing occasionally with the marinade sauce.
I bet that at this point you have your mouths watering.
So, hurry up, find your ideal holiday rental home and enjoy BBQs and gatehrings every single day!
It was then again transported by the angels in 1294, to the other part of the Adriatic Sea, to Recanati and finally, one year after, in 1295, it found its final position into a laurel grove, called the ‘Lauretanum,’ from where the name of Loreto comes from. The legend also says that when the Virgin’s House was lowered by the angels the the trees around bowed down in respect.
The scientific research, however, insists that the transportation of the Holy House was done by sea and was not flown by angels. Moreover, monks and crusaders were often referred to as ‘angels’ by the common people during the medieval period thus explaining the myth of ‘angels’ transporting the Holy House from Nazareth to Loreto on their wings. Indeed, after centuries of research, in 1962 archaeological and literature evidence suggest that the house in the center of the Basilica of Loreto, may actually originate from the lands of Nazareth for its limestone and cedar construction materials are typical for that land and period and are not to be found in Marche.
The Holy House, located in the center of the Basilica today, is quite small, consisting of a single room. The original House had three walls with the fourth being open towards the entrance of the grotto where today stands the altar with a statue of a Black Madonna. Two different parts can be identified in the construction of the Santa Casa : the original wall, about 3 meters high, built in regular row and with limestone blocks found in Palestine and a newer upper section built with Marche local bricks. There are six graffiti, similar to those found in the Holy Land, belonging to ancient periods.
Almost two centuries after the appearance of the Holy House in Loreto, in 1469, a large Basilica was built around it. It has been reconstructed and remodeled several times over the centuries and today it has a Renaissance exterior and a Gothic interior. Soon after the construction of the Basilica it became very popular in Italy, and by the 16th century it was visited by pilgrims from all over Europe.
Inside the Basilica, exactly below the Dome, there is a huge marble concourse, surrounding the Holy House. The Marble Screen, representing Bible scenes, together with a scene representing the legend of the angels flying the house, was assigned by Julius II, who, in 1507, sent Donato Bramante to Loreto to do “great things” there and to “draw many works”. There are two obvious paths formed in the hard stone concourse, left by the millions of pilgrims who would circumnavigate the Holy shrine on their knees.
The Virgin of Loreto is considered the patron saint of pilots, emigrants, and expectant mothers. Each year, on December 10, pilgrims and citizens celebrate the arrival of the Holy House in Loreto. The little town has become one of the most popular places in Marche throughout the centuries and undoubtedly a must-visited site for all the Christian pilgrims worldwide.
Today the Sanctuary of the Holy House is site No 2, according to TripAdvisor (in my opinion it should be definitely in 1st position ) and therefore I highly recommend you visit Loreto and its Basilica, even if you have just a single day in Marche. You do not need to be a believer or a Christian in order to appreciate the magnificence and uniqueness of this place. No matter if you are simply an art lover or a curious tourist who would like to expand his culture, the Holy House of Loreto will be worth visiting!