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Four impressive homemade BBQ condiments

To make your BBQ food really sing, there’s nothing quite like a range of really great accompaniments. Ketchup and mayonnaise are a given, but why not spice up your next summertime event with some homemade condiments to beef up your burgers and turn your sausages into something swankier?


If you want to impress, a freshly made truffle mayonnaise is hard to beat. Put three egg yolks, two teaspoons of Dijon mustard and a generous pinch of salt in a blender and process until smooth. Keeping the motor running, slowly drizzle in 250ml of olive oil and a further 50ml of truffle-infused olive oil. Once emulsified, you’ll have a delicious, thick, creamy mayonnaise with just a hint of truffle flavour. Use a squeeze of lemon juice to loosen the mixture and chill well before serving.

Another way to liven up your mayonnaise is to go for a classic French aioli. Use the same basic mayonnaise recipe, but add three crushed garlic cloves instead of the mustard and use 150ml of olive oil and 150ml of grapeseed oil. For a lemon mayonnaise that’s superb with fish, simply add more lemon juice to the basic recipe and go a little easier on the salt so as to not drown out the citrus flavour.

BBQ sauce

Like HP sauce with a kick, this sauce is delicious with hot dogs, burgers or sausages. Chop a small onion, crush two garlic cloves, and soften in olive oil over a low heat. Add this to a blender along with a 300g tin of chopped tomatoes, 2tbsp of tomato puree, 2tbsp of brown sugar, 1tbsp of Worcestershire sauce, ½tsp of chilli flakes, 2tbsp of white wine vinegar, 1tbsp of Dijon mustard and a pinch of salt and pepper. Blend until smooth, taste, and adjust the seasoning, adding a little warm water if the mixture is too thick.

Sauce vierge

A tangy, herby green sauce, this is a French staple that goes surprisingly well with most BBQ dishes. Finely chop two salad tomatoes, two anchovy fillets, two garlic cloves and a handful each of fresh basil, flat-leaf parsley and tarragon. Put these in a serving bowl and drizzle in 200ml of olive oil, the juice of a lemon, a few crushed coriander seeds and salt and pepper. Simply mix with a spoon and this is ready to go. If you’re serving kebabs or koftas, add in some finely chopped black olives and a teaspoon of red harissa paste for more of a Middle Eastern flavour.

Lightly pickled vegetables

Almost any salad vegetable can be pickled, but sliced radish, finely sliced courgette, batons of cucumber and slices of red onion are all great choices. Combine 250ml of water with 250ml of apple cider vinegar and 2tbsp of either white sugar or honey in a pan. Bring slowly to the boil and simmer gently for five minutes. Once cool, pour the pickling mixture over the sliced vegetables and keep in the fridge for a couple of hours before serving.

All these sauces and pickles will keep well for a couple of days in the fridge, but be warned – they’re so delicious, you may not have any left!

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