Common BBQ tool ‘does more harm than good’ claims chef – ‘throw it out now’

Nothing quite beats the taste of food that’s been cooked on a barbecue, especially on a hot summer’s day.

Whether it’s vegetable skewers or beef burgers that are grilled over hot coals, quality ingredients and a reliable set of tools are essential to make them a success.

But according to Mike Reid, culinary director of Rare Restaurants, this is often where many people go wrong.

Speaking exclusively to, Mike- who appeared alongside Michel Roux Jr. on Five Star Kitchen: Britain’s Next Great Chef, said: “One of the biggest mistakes many people make is owning a BBQ fork!”

He explained that while it seems like a trivial move, the popular cooking tool can have a detrimental effect on the food.

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Mike continued: “If you own one, I’d advise you to throw it out now; they do more harm than good when grilling as they leave holes in your food which allows all the juices to pour out.

“In my experience, the best BBQ tools are a great pair of tongs, along with a good BBQ spatula and brushes for adding marinades.”

The experienced chef claimed that when it comes to his own barbecue menu, sausages, koftas and kebabs are at the top of his shopping list.

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The Five Star Kitchen: Britain’s Next Great Chef guest noted that he “loves any kind of skewer” because they’re much more affordable to make without compromising on flavour.

He said: “You can use cheaper cuts of meat and make them taste incredible, they’re also quick and easy to cook too.”

And when it comes to grilling them to perfection, Mike suggested paying close attention to the barbecue itself as well as the tools used.

Mike revealed: “It’s all about controlling your heat – to master the BBQ you must first master the flame. If you are cooking with coal or wood make sure you give it time to die down before cooking on it.”

The renowned TV chef recommended checking the “hotspots” by simply holding a hand above the grill to gauge the heat.

He continued: “Depending on how long you can hold your hand there is a reflection of the temperature. One second is the hottest and five seconds is the coolest.

“In terms of timing, meat and veg love a high heat generally. Although a good rule to follow is the higher the fat content (ribeye or sirloin) the higher the heat it can handle, whereas more leaner cuts (fillet or rump) prefer a cooler heat.

“With vegetables char equals flavour (there is a big difference between burnt and char) – veggies have so many natural sugars inside that shine when they are barbequed in the right way over a higher heat.

“Keep basting, keep turning and watch a boring cabbage morph into a charred delicious crispy thing of beauty.”

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