There is no other room in the house that expresses our era like the kitchen. Over the past couple of decades, they have constantly been updated by modern technology, at the same time culinary fashions have changed radically.
History shows that many farms once had both an indoor and an outdoor kitchen. Back in the day, not all the necessary tasks like butchering large animals and rendering fat were able to be carried out indoors. But often a chore that is unpleasant to perform inside becomes quite enjoyable when pursued outdoors with others. For generations, communities have shared outdoor cooking locations such as fire pits, smokers and traditional masonry ovens. Even to this modern age, it is still prevalent for Mediterranean families to only cook outdoors, and some community-oriented Greek and Cyprus villages also share a bread oven to this day. Likewise, the Argentineans who still meet to barbecue massive cuts of meat together over embers.
Now more and more people in Australia are heading back outdoors to cook and eat in open spaces. The origin of this trend lies in the history of convivial cooking that involves family and friends in the daily rituals of food preparation. Outdoor cooking is so much more than just a firewood barbecue. Nowadays top-end outdoor kitchens are available where people grab the chance to experience the combination of traditional cooking and fine dining while watching the world go by during those long summer evenings. For everybody taking part - outdoor cooking is pure entertainment.
Cooking beyond the kitchen will expand your living space. Your back porch or garden turns into the perfect location to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries or summer holidays since there is no defined dining area anymore and thus enough space for all your family and guests to be catered for. Being altogether outside while cooking in the open kitchen also gives you the chance of showing off your skills, since your guests can watch their food being created before their eyes. Furthermore, outdoor cooking is perfect for entertaining and socialising with your people as dinner is being prepared. You can have a chat and drink with friends, listen to some music, watch the children run around and cook all at the same time.
In the summer, cooking generally takes place during the warmer hours of the day. Taking your kitchen outdoors will save you on energy bills since you won't need any air conditioning when baking bread or cooking up a roast.
There is also the issue of aroma when cooking everything indoors. While some foods smell delicious when they’re cooking, others are less desirable. If prepared indoors, fish or deep-fried items have an aroma that can linger for days. Outdoor cooking will make your house stay fresh no matter what’s on the menu.
While most modern homes and their backyards don’t have space for an extra kitchen, everyone can take advantage of the following ways to cook beyond the standard kitchen:
A wood-fired barbecue is the most common outdoor cooking experience most Australians are familiar with. Feed your barbecue ironbark logs or bbq fruitwood such as apple for the low and slow cooking experience and end up with succulent fall apart ribs or a succulent brisket.
Mainly because they are fast and easy to start up and have an excellent temperature control, gas grills now dominate the market. To impart flavour as in charcoal and firewood cooking, chefs often add hardwood plugs to their gas grill to infuse the meat with a smoky flavour. Try this tip next time you're putting a juicy patty on the grill, adding firewood wrapped up in aluminium foil will ultimately enhance the taste of your burger.
The beauty of pizza ovens in the backyard is that everybody can make their favourite pizza. And while the oven’s still hot you can bake your next day’s bread, too.
From firing up the oven for a pizza party, homemade crusty bread or perfectly cooked glazed meats on a Sunday, a pizza oven is an excellent addition to a family’s backyard.