Five Traditions from Around the World for Your Next BBQ

From smoky American classics to spicy South American specialties, there’s a wealth of culinary inspiration waiting to elevate your next garden get-together in the warmer weather.

For those looking to get more adventurous when next loading dense braai wood onto your BBQ, the team at Logs Direct have taken a journey across continents to discover five unique barbecue traditions and recipes that will add flair and flavour to your outdoor cooking.

The slow smoking of American BBQ
When it comes to barbecue, the United States is renowned for its diverse regional styles, each with its distinct flavours and techniques. There are so many distinctions between them that seven different regions of the US make up what’s become known as the “BBQ Belt”.

Whether it’s the tangy vinegar-based sauces of North Carolina or the sweet and sticky ribs of Kansas City, American BBQ offers something for every palate. For your next BBQ, consider smoking beef low and slow over hickory wood for that classic Texas flavour, or whip up a batch of Memphis-style dry-rubbed pork spare ribs for a taste of Tennessee.

Argentinian asado grilling
In Argentina, the barbecue tradition known as the asado is a time-honoured ritual that brings friends and family together around the grill. The centrepiece of an asado is often a whole side of beef or lamb, slowly grilled over an open flame until it reaches juicy perfection.

To recreate this experience at home, marinate your meat in a chimichurri made from fresh chopped parsley and dried oregano, garlic, olive oil, and red wine vinegar (with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes for some added kick), then grill it to smoky perfection alongside an assortment of vegetables for a true taste of Argentina.

The sweet and spicy side of Korean BBQ
Korean BBQ, or gogigui, is all about sizzling meats and bold flavours. Thinly sliced beef or pork is marinated in a mixture of soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic, and sugar, then grilled tableside on a portable gas or charcoal grill. Don’t worry if you don’t have a portable one; it’ll work just as well on your outdoor grill.

Serve the grilled meat with an array of side dishes known as banchan, such as kimchi, other pickled vegetables, and steamed rice, for a complete Korean BBQ experience that’s sure to impress your guests. For an added presentation tip, sprinkle sesame seeds of mixed colours onto the meet for some colour contrast.

Jamaican jerk for a taste of the Caribbean
Originating in Jamaica, jerk seasoning is a fiery blend of spices such as allspice, scotch bonnet peppers, and thyme, traditionally used to flavour meats like chicken, pork, or fish. To prepare Jamaican jerk at home, marinate your protein of choice in a mixture of jerk seasoning, lime juice, and soy sauce, then grill it over a hot flame until charred and caramelised. Serve the jerk meat with traditional sides like rice and peas or fried plantains for an authentic taste of the Caribbean.

South African braai
In South Africa, braai is more than just barbecue; it is closer to its culture and way of life. Friends and family gather around the fire to grill meats such as boerewors (sausage), sosaties (kebabs), and steaks while sharing stories and enjoying each other’s company. To host your own South African braai, fire up the grill and cook a variety of meats seasoned with a blend of spices like coriander, cumin, and paprika. Don’t forget to serve plenty of sides like mieliepap (maize porridge) and chakalaka (spicy relish) to complete the experience.

There’s nothing wrong with throwing some burgers and sausages on a BBQ in the traditional British way, but outdoor cooking can offer so many more techniques and flavours. Lighting your grill doesn’t have to just be meat in buns, and it gives you the opportunity to explore flavours you’ve never experienced before. So why not try something new and find your new favourite cuisine to cook at home and wow at warm-weather get-togethers?