Last minute barbecue? Enjoy the sun with these quick recipes

You can sit back and enjoy the sunshine while these recipes basically take care of themselves

Lilly Higgins baked barbecue ribs with corn on the cob

Lilly Higgins baked barbecue ribs with corn on the cob


Donal Skehan: Kogi kimchi dogs
Serves four
20 mins



  • Half a head of white cabbage, thinly shaved
  • 3 spring onions, finely sliced
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
  • 6 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 150g kimchi, drained
  • 4 good-quality hot dogs
  • 4 hot dog buns
  • 1 Baby Gem lettuce, shredded
  • A small handful of coriander
  • Sriracha sauce, to serve

Massage the cabbage and spring onions with the lime juice in a bowl and set aside.

Bash the sesame seeds in a pestle and mortar until they become a rough powder. Stir the sesame dust through the mayonnaise and set aside.

In a large frying pan, fry the kimchi with a little oil until it begins to catch and brown slightly. Remove from the pan, wipe the pan clean, then keep the kimchi warm.

Barbecue or fry the hot dogs with a drizzle of oil until browned on all sides and cooked through. Split the buns and toast until lightly brown.

Assemble the hot dogs by spreading the mayo across the buns, adding a dog to each one, topping with the kimchi, cabbage slaw, shredded lettuce, coriander, and a drizzle of sriracha sauce.


Spiced Halloumi salad
Serves four
15 mins


The ingredients

  • 25g flour
  • 10g garam masala or curry powder
  • 500g halloumi
  • 125g salad leaves
  • 8 radishes  
  • Olive oil
  • Lime juice or cider vinegar  

Place the flour and spices into a shallow bowl. Mix well. Slice the cheese into 12 thick slices. Coat the cheese well in the seasoned flour. Heat three tablespoons of olive oil a large frying pan. Fry the cheese for a few minutes each side until crispy and browned. Set aside on kitchen paper. Meanwhile, thinly slice the radish and mix with the salad leaves. Dress with a mixture of olive oil and lime juice or cider vinegar. Pile the salad on to four plates. Top with three slices of fried cheese and serve immediately.


Lilly Higgins baked barbecue ribs with corn on the cob
Serves six
45 mins



  • 2 x 1.3kg racks of meaty pork ribs

For the barbecue sauce:

  • 250ml tomato ketchup
  • 80g dark brown sugar
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 3tbs Worcestershire sauce
  • 1tbs cider vinegar
  • 1tsp smoked paprika
  • ½tsp dried oregano or thyme
  • 1tsp sea salt
  • 1tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 3-6 corn on the cob, cut in half or served whole

To serve:
Salad, coleslaw or sauerkraut
Baked potatoes

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Mix all the sauce ingredients together. Place the ribs in a large roasting tin and pour the sauce over them. Ensure they are completely covered. Roast for 40-45 minutes, turning after 20 minutes, until charred and sticky. Meanwhile boil the corn in plenty of water. Drain once done. Melt a tablespoon of butter in a heavy-based frying pan. Add the corn cobs to the pan and colour over a high heat, tossing and coating the corn in the butter. When they’re nicely coloured, with the ribs.


The Hang Fire Cookbook: Classic Asian slaw
15 Mins
Serves four as a side



  • Half a Chinese cabbage, finely sliced
  • Half a small red cabbage, finely sliced
  • 2 carrots, finely sliced into long thin strips (use a julienne cutter if you have one)
  • 3 spring onions, sliced lengthways into long, thin strips
  • 100g mangetout, sliced lengthways
  • 100g beansprouts
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 tbsp caster sugar
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
  • Medium bunch coriander, finely chopped
  • Small bunch mint leaves, finely chopped
  • Small bunch Thai basil leaves, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
  • 50g toasted unsalted peanuts, crushed

For the dressing:

  • 1 garlic clove, very finely chopped
  • 1 tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 50ml rice vinegar
  • 50ml olive oil
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
  • Sea salt and black pepper, to taste

This recipe might seem like it has a million ingredients, but it really is a standout side dish and your guests will be sure to appreciate the effort.

Add your prepared vegetables to a bowl. Sprinkle with the salt, sugar and lime juice and toss through. Put the bowl in the fridge while you prepare the dressing.

Whisk the dressing ingredients in a bowl. Taste to check the seasoning. Pour the dressing over the chilled vegetables and mix well. Now add the chilli, chopped herbs and sesame seeds and toss through. Allow the flavours to come together in the fridge. Just before serving, sprinkle over the toasted crushed peanuts.


Lilly Higgins sweet potato falafel
Makes about 20
40 mins



  • 225g sweet potato
  • 280g cannellini beans
  • 1tbs linseed
  • 20g coriander
  • 85g oats
  • 1tsp smoked paprika or other spices
  • Sea salt

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Peel and dice the sweet potato. Place in the bowl of a food processor with the beans, linseed, chopped coriander and oats. Add the paprika and season generously with salt. Add two tablespoons of water, then combine the mix by pulsing on and off. You don’t want it to become a smooth paste, so clean down the sides of the bowl and ensure everything is mixed evenly. Or you can grate the sweet potato, mash the beans and mix everything in a bowl. With wet hands, form the mixture into tablespoon-sized balls. Place on an oiled baking tray and bake for 30 minutes, until crunchy on the outside. Serve hot, drizzled with tahini, sriracha sauce or yoghurt.


Four summery beers to try at home


They call them lawnmower beers in the United States. Light, golden and thirst-quenching, they’re the type of cool beverage knocked back when the sun comes out and the barbecue gets dusted off.

Beer Garden Wit is a seasonal beer worth checking out from the Longford brewery, St Mel’s. This is a 5% Belgian-style witbier with orange peel, coriander and elderflower with an earthy flavour and a summery golden haze.

For an Irish lawnmower beer alternative – tasty, easy-drinking and balanced – try Mountain Man’s Hairy Goat. This is an English-style India Pale Ale with a medium bitterness and a good grapefruity aroma. At 4.5% it’s not too strong either (worth keeping an eye on when choosing beers for afternoon or early-evening barbecues).

For something with a little more bite, grab a few cans of Black’s Kinsale Pale Ale 5%, which has a good, crisp hoppiness and balance that will stand up to stronger flavours if you’ve got spicy sausages or chicken on the menu.

For something totally different try Lindeman’s Pecheresse – this is a 2.5% Belgian lambic which mixes sweet and sour with a hint of peach. I tried it one evening recently and even though the rain was coming down outside I swear I could hear the sound of a lawnmower going in the distance.


Grill and glug: barbecue wines from John Wilson


I divide my barbecue wines into three categories. There is no getting away from the idea of matching a big, powerful red with barbecued red meat. Smoked or heavily marinated and spicy meat probably demands the biggest wines of all. For inspiration, look to sunny countries and how they match their wine and food. Shiraz from Australia, malbec from Argentina and zinfandel from California are all classic partners.

With fish and chicken a rich white wine or a rosé is called for. I probably do not pay rosés enough attention in this column. I could blame the weather but I have to admit I am not a big fan generally. There are some very pricey pinks from Provence and elsewhere, but I am not convinced they are worth the money. However, rosés can be great with grilled or barbecued shellfish, fish and chicken, especially if those with an Asian or Middle-Eastern marinade or rub. They also go very well with all sorts of salads, so they are a good catch-all summer wine. If you want to stick with white wine, a chardonnay (lightly oaked wines and smoke) or a rich viognier are probably the best options. You could serve a light, chilled red wine, such as a pinot noir, with grilled salmon or tuna.

My final barbecue wine does not go with any of the food; it is the aperitif! Charcoal always takes far longer to get ready than you think, and some foods, chicken in particular, must be thoroughly cooked (my best friend is a digital thermometer), so make sure you have something to drink while waiting for the food to be ready. Avoid big, alcoholic wines, or you and your guests will be sprawling long before the food is ready. A light, well-chilled refreshing white wine is ideal; a Mosel riesling Kabinett, if you are having nibbles, or you could think about a lightly chilled beaujolais or Loire cabernet, or again a rosé, as they tend to be light in alcohol.