A changing barbecue season - How to barbecue in Germany

22.06.2020

As soon as the temperatures rise, it is time to start the barbecue season again all over Germany. Whether on the balcony, the terrace or in the park - a summer without a barbecue is unthinkable for the majority of Germans. 75% of all German households regularly grill during the hot season. But it is becoming apparent that grilling habits are slowly changing. Take a look at it in terms of the food to be grilled or the frequency of barbecuing.

The event character of barbecuing has been preserved. Celebrations and meetings with friends, family or neighbours are the most common reasons to light the barbecue. Barbecues are particularly often used during events such as the football World Cup and European Championship. According to statistics, spontaneity is not a priority. Barbecues are a well-planned affair for 73% of households. The day with the best weather is chosen and up to a week in advance, everything is bought and prepared. No wonder, because in addition to meat, the events naturally include numerous side dishes such as dips, salads, baguettes, vegetables, seafood and cheese - there is no shortage of variation.

Nevertheless, for 96% of all households meat is still the number one grill food. It is best to marinate it already - herb, pepper and chilli marinades are very popular. The quality of the meat plays a decisive role for many self-appointed barbecue experts. The meat should be of high quality and come from a trusted dealer.

The second most popular grilled product (67%) is still sausages. However, vegetables on the grill are also becoming increasingly popular. 59% of Germans also like to use vegetarian barbecue food. Only an extremely small proportion of them completely do without meat on the barbecue.

But for 20 million households, barbecuing is not just a communal event, but also serves as a simple substitute for cooking in the summer. For many people, the variation is then no longer so important, which is partly due to the fact that the barbecue is spontaneously turned on. The weather also plays a minor role - as long as it is warm enough, you can barbecue outside. And if unexpected rain should come your way, you can simply use the compact Electric grill in the kitchen.

In the meantime, however, barbecuing has long since ceased to be a pure summer pleasure. 5.6 million German households do not do without meat and sausages even in winter. But because it's too cold to stand outside in front of the grill, people like to use the Electric Grill. The compact device can be easily stored in the kitchen and loaded with your favourite barbecue food at any time of the year. There is no relevant difference to the usual grilling experience. The subsequent cleaning is also very easy.

Alternative electric grill
Thanks to electric grill, you can enjoy barbecue food in any weather - photo: @ Miguel Gracia Saaved adobestock

Despite the obvious advantages of the electric barbecue and the increasing popularity of the gas barbecue, the charcoal barbecue is still the favourite of most barbecue fans. However, this is not good for the climate. About 95 percent of the climate-relevant emissions during barbecuing are caused by barbecue food.

Moreover, charcoal from overseas is often a by-product of the clearing of large forests. For a layman, it is usually difficult to tell whether there is tropical wood under the charcoal. Especially from Nigeria a lot of barbecue coal is delivered to Germany. In order to counteract this, it is especially important to make sure that no barbecue coal made of tropical woods, but rather those made of local woods ends up on your barbecue. Good barbecue charcoal is made from hardwoods. Beechwood is particularly suitable for barbecuing because it has a high calorific value and also burns for a long time.

Alternatives to conventional charcoal are for example briquettes made from olive stones or coconut briquettes made from coconut shells. But the cleanest alternative is still the electric and gas barbecue. You can find more information and detailed test reports on electric grills here.