Is Australia famous for barbecues? It thinks it is. I think the British have started this rumor due to there lack of travel destinations and their unwillingness to stand outdoors to cook. Who could blame them when its cold and raining.
OK, how would we define a standard Australian bbq? Its a gas fed outdoor cooker. Often installed on a veranda, and used when its the mans turn to cook. No wood, no charcoal and no flavour!
Australian bbqs suck (in relative terms only). Even at my own house, where we actuality use wood, we still don’t let the fire touch the food. We have a solid plate that is just a big frying pan.
But in Argentina things are a bit different. Here there is fire and charcoal and coals. And flavour!
We got to El Boson expecting to stay a couple of days and keep moving. We ended up staying a whole week and eating like bbq kings.
Claudio the owner of the hostel we stayed in used to be a chef for the Marriott hotel in Buenos Aries. Now he cooks bbq for cheap ass backpacking types.
On our first night there he built up a fire for coal production. Put some chorizos on his special sausage cooker. The coals went under a whole leg of a cow shaped beast, that had been hacked up with a large Japanese cleaver.
Girls made salad inside. Typical behavior in all parts of the world apparently.
The meat went on a wire rack, under which coals were shoveled from the fire. This was done a couple of times to keep the meat sizzling and dripping.
On the last day of our stay we went up to a lake for a more outdoor version. We stopped to get some pre-packaged charcoal along the way (i assume we can get this in Australia? must look).
When we arrived at our designated area, Claudio threw the charcoal into a cardboard box and lit the box. Simple. The wire rack went down close, not over the fire. And on went the meat. Lamb this time. The coals were raked out of the fire and under the rack as required.
Thats how you do it!
Guess who made the salad?
These experiences were inspiring and i would love to bring this simple Argentinian tradition home.