If you go down to the park today, you might be in for a big surprise. You could find people barbecuing there – legally.
Nearly half of us think it’s illegal to barbecue in public outdoor spaces, even though we’re all keen to get cooking in the open.
The truth of the matter is that while different parks and beaches might have their own rules about lighting up the barbie, little is really known about the law regarding such things.
But there’s now a map to help you find that barbecue hotspot. Head to simplybeefandlamb.com and have a look at their interactive Grillocations map, to see where you can find approved barbecue sites, with more added all the time.
So if you’re desperate to get grilling outdoors, here’s a recipe to get you started.
Preparation time: 15 minutes plus freezing time. Cooking time: 12-16 minutes. Serves 4. Ingredients, for the burgers: 450g/1lb lean beef mince; freshly-milled black pepper; 1 small courgette, coarsely grated. For the garlic butter: 75g/3oz salted butter, slightly softened; 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped or crushed; 15-30ml/1-2tbsp freshly chopped flat-leaf parsley or chives.
Method: Garlic butter - in a small bowl mix together all the ingredients. Mould the butter into a cylinder shape, the diameter of a two pence coin, wrap in foil and freeze for up to two hours.
Burgers - in a large bowl mix the burger ingredients together. Using slightly damp hands shape the mixture into 8 x 9cm/3½inch burgers, 1cm/½inch thick.
Cut the butter into 4 x 1cm/½inch thick discs. Place a disc in the centre of each burger. Position the remaining burgers on top and continue to mould into a burger shape so that the butter discs are hidden in the centre. Cover and chill for 20 minutes.
Cook the burgers on a prepared barbecue (or preheated moderate grill for 6-8 minutes) on each side until cooked and any meat juices run clear.
Serve the burgers in a bun or with flatbreads, a crisp green salad and a selection of relishes.
Outdoor Cooking Tips
* The most practical barbecue to use if you’re out and about it undoubtedly the disposable foil variety.
* To avoid leaving unsightly black scorch marks in the grass, raise them off the ground using a couple of bricks or old logs.
* Ensure the grill is properly extinguished before you throw it away too – douse it in water, and keep doing so until the charcoal is well and truly out and there is no heat coming from it.
* Be mindful of the wind direction – don’t set up your grill where your burger smoke is likely to offend anyone.
* Take lots of bin bags with you. After you've finished cooking and eating, you should leave without trace.