Barbecue is delicious no matter where you are from. Calgary barbecue has influences from many different regions, including Great Britain, Europe, and the United States. Perhaps the biggest influence on Calgary BBQ is from the Mediterranean.
Mediterranean barbecue is commonly braised with olive oil, citrus juices and a blend of spices. It is not uncommon to find beef and chicken on the grill in Mediterranean cuisine, but you might also spy pita bread and certain cheeses. Try one of these BBQ recipes for the tastiest Mediterranean BBQ you have ever had.
Mediterranean Pita Pizzas
Barbecued pita is one of the uniquely great tastes of Mediterranean cuisine. It takes little prep work to have a perfectly toasted pita. In fact, all you have to do is brush the bread with olive oil and place on the grill until you are satisfied. Grill whichever vegetables you like for the pizza itself. Artichoke hearts, tomatoes and peppers are popular choices, but you can add onions, eggplant, mushrooms and/or broccoli as well. Once the vegetables are grilled to your satisfaction, the pizza is simple to assemble. Spread hummus over the pita, place sliced vegetables along the top and then add feta cheese. You can also include whole or sliced olives and a sprinkle of lemon juice for a true Mediterranean taste.
Grilled Pepper Salad
Your guests will never know that this simple salad takes only minutes to prepare. Start with the dressing, which is made from olive oil, toasted garlic, and parsley. Grill yellow, red and green peppers until charred. Remove the skin, trim the peppers and toss in a bowl with the dressing. Sprinkle the top with feta cheese and toasted pine nuts.
Who said soup couldn’t be made on a barbecue grill? Gazpacho is made with a mixture of vegetables and spices that have been cooked to perfection before being blended in a food processor. It is typically served room temperature or chilled. To make the gazpacho even more special, barbecue the vegetables on your grill just before blending. Choose an array of vegetables like tomatoes, bell peppers, onions, and garlic. Marinate in some cracked black pepper and olive oil before grilling on the barbecue. This extra step gives the gazpacho a delicious taste that you’ll want to experience again and again.
Halloumi cheese is a staple of Mediterranean cuisine. To make this delectable dish, cut the halloumi into a block and allow it to soak overnight or for at least four hours in cold water. When ready to grill, thread the cheese onto skewers, drizzle in olive oil and grill on each side for about three minutes. Before grilling, you can add herbs like parsley, oregano or rosemary.
BBQ Beef Kebabs
Mediterranean BBQ beef kabobs are another one of those BBQ recipes that look much more difficult to prepare than they are. The secret is in the herbs and spices. Mix about 1 1/2 pounds of ground beef with an egg and some breadcrumbs. Then add your spices. Include garlic, onion, parsley, mint, salt, cumin, cinnamon, red pepper and oregano in equal parts. Form the kebabs around wooden skewers that have been soaked for grilling, and then grill for about four to five minutes on each side. Serve with pita, hummus and tahini garlic sauce for a special treat.