Autumn menu for the BBQ
Autumn is a beautiful time of the year. The colour of the leaves, the crisp fall air, and quite often the weather is warm and sunny enough that all you need is a nice wool sweater to keep you warm.That said, you have to be a little hard-core to plan a BBQ in the middle of October. Throw on that warm sweater, and maybe a tuque and you should be fine. Since you will be standing over a warm barbecue, and wearing your oven mitts, it is actually the best place to be on a cool fall day. It’s definitely a nice way to celebrate the last few weekends before we really are obligated to put the barbecue in storage for the winter.
To facilitate your get-together (or perhaps it’s just a special meal for your family), I have concocted the perfect menu for fall barbecuing which incorporates a couple elements from the autumn harvest.
Did you manage to get out apple picking this year? It’s a great (and budget-friendly) autumn activity! The first thing on my menu is inspired by this delicious fall fruit: a roast pork loin served with homemade apple sauce. Mmmm… my mouth is watering already! For a side dish, I will turn to another popular vegetable this time of year, the squash. I suggest glazed acorn squash, which is so flavourful roasted over the BBQ.
For barbecuing these types of food, (the pork and the acorn squash), it is important to remember to pre-heat the BBQ and then to turn the flame off on one side, and use that side to cook with. I like to marinate my pork loin in brine for at least 9 hours, and let it sit a bit (about a ½ hour) before cooking it. On the barbecue it takes a pork roast anywhere from 30-40 minutes to cook; just make sure the internal temperature is 160°F for medium doneness. Serve it with your favourite homemade apple sauce recipe (I like mine chunky!)
The acorn squash is so simple: cut it in two, empty out the seeds, mix a little brown sugar with a bit of balsamic vinaigrette and brush it onto the squash. Then just roast it on the BBQ (again on the side with the burner off) with the flesh side down for 30 minutes, turn it over and brush it with a bit more glaze, and roast it skin side down for another 20-30 minutes until the flesh is tender.
There you have it! A succulent and flavourful autumn meal that will be a hit with your guests and family!