Charcoal barbecuing with friends

What is with this weather of late in some of Australia's eastern areas? It's hot then it's cold, then it's hot again. Whilst spring/summer is having trouble knocking winter off its perch, winter seems more than happy to keep a grip on the weather patterns in the meantime. Not to worry, as it is inevitable that the seasons will change and soon we will all be basking in glorious sunshine, enjoying the outdoors once again, and partaking in activities such as barbecues.

Living in an apartment makes for tighter spaces (well, for us mere everyday folk at least) and outdoor entertaining is limited to what balcony/porch space is available. My balcony is a slightly odd shape but provides more than enough room to set up a cute little Bodum Fyrkat picnic barbecue surrounded by a few chairs to enjoy a charcoal campfire-style barbecue with friends. Being low, it is also a great height for huddling around where we each stab our own skewers of food to be cooked. The barbecue itself doesn't require assembly, with only the catch-pan and grill needing to be placed atop. Lighting the fire, well... That took the efforts of 3 men and more than a few attempts due to some swirling winds which started to pick up, but it's nothing a blast of hot air from a hairdryer won't fix!

Charcoal barbecues provide the best flavour, in my opinion, and seals meat differently to the harsh flame of gas barbecues. Of course the beauty of this little Bodum gem, apart from the range of bright colours in which it is available, is that it easily portable to a park for some proper outdoor barbecuing. And if you remember, unlike - ahem - me, you can toast marshmallows and/or make s'mores over the open fire too.

But apart from the usual barbecuing of meats, add a pizza stone and you can play around with making coal-fired pizzas as well. My tip would be to use a smaller pizza stone than what I have above, to allow for more airflow from the coals underneath to cook the pizzas faster and help crisp up the tops. Oh, and don't forget to leave the air vents in the lid open to allow steam to escape! (Just an easy twist of the handle, really.) Lest you will be rewarded with odd, slightly steamed, Asian bun-style surfaces to your pizza dough. That being said, the coals definitely took the pizza stone to higher temperatures than my oven and made for wonderfully crisp and golden bases.

So, what are you looking forward to once the warmer weather settles in?

Mademoiselle Délicieuse received a Bodum Fyrkat Picnic Charcoal Grill for review courtesy of Kitchenware Direct as part of this post.

happy cooking!


  1. What a cute little bbq! Such a great idea for small spaces.

  2. Nice array of pizzas you have there! Especially the choc and banana one; how indulgent! Wouldn't have thought of placing a pizza stone on top of a grill to make pizzas, what a smart cookie. I'm stealing that idea whenever I get the chance for a BBQ. I'm longing for the warm weather to kick in

  3. That is such a cutie, I bet it would be pretty easy to travel with too. Pizza stone is a clever idea.

  4. squee nutella and banana pizza hells yeah!

  5. You must have the patience of the saint to get that running, have done it a few times with my family. Lol, it really tested my patience.

  6. What a cute little BBQ, just the thing for summer on the balcony :)

    The pizza's looked pretty delicious, looks like you were feeding an army, I love dessert pizzas :)

  7. I think I need one of these for my apartment! Love my coal bbqs and yes a hairdryer always does the trick! Your nutella and banana pizza looks awesome

  8. wow did you make all of those pizzas? they look so freakin good! mmm...smores...

  9. So so true- it was freezing when i woke up this morning, boiling hot by the time I got to uni, freezing again when I got out of my first lecture and then boiling hot again by the middle of the day *sigh* This barbecue grill looks a bit like our one- only ours is a billion years old! Love the idea of cooking pizza on it!! The chocolate (nutella?) one looks so good!

  10. I do love the Bodum Barbeque. Its so light and cute and so easy to clean. I also love the traditional charcoal flavour it gives food. You have a pretty red one just like me Rita...

  11. I've never thought of putting a pizza stone on a BBQ before! That's such a genius idea :D probs take longer? but still awesome!! BBQ corn is the best ^^

  12. This is brilliant! Looks much more sturdy than the cheap little barbecue I got on Ebay once and then the paint peeled off after just one use. I find it cute you used it INSIDE - no smoke alarm? I would grab ours and take it down to the park for barbecue picnic by the water. With teriyaki salmon skewers I reckon!

  13. Hey Lau, it's small but enough for a small to medium group of friends. And yes, great for small spaces.

    Hey Phuoc, heheh, Nutella and bah-nah-nah! My friend pops her pizza stone on her gas barbecue and it works a treat.

    Hey Sara, I need to try taking the barbecue out on a road trip but expect it to be very transportable.

    Hey chocolatesuze, Nutella, banana AND peanuts!

    Hey Dumpling Girl, with the quick light coals it took around 20 minutes? Well, that was the second time we used the barbecue and it was on a much less windy day =p

    Hey Gourmet Getaways, well we had dough that we'd already made up and, you know, you can't let it go to waste...

    Hey Jacq, I never knew about the hairdryer trick until a much more experienced friend showed me!

    Hey sugarpuffi, made with help from a friend who brought over her sourdough base!

    Hey Von, the heat made the Nutella all runny and gooey, mmmm...

    Hey Kath, because red is best!

    Hey Vivian, woodfired pizzas are great but places with coal-fire ovens are even better! My mini version's not quite the same but fun to try out.

    Hey Martyna, I'm dreaming up when we can take the barbecue out for some outdoor action. And no no, the barbecuing was done on our balcony - definitely not indoors!

  14. I love our charcoal Weber BBQ, I agree the charcoal gives great flavour. I never thought to use a pizza stone in it though - brilliant! :D

  15. Hey Chanel, some of the best pizzas in the world are made in charcoal ovens, I've heard...


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