This is the time of year my husband is his happiest, with the sun shining, trips to the beach, sleepovers in the caravan and a barbecue.

Give him a barbecue and he is the happiest man alive. In fact I’ve been checking out Barbeques Galore which have a ton of ideas for barbecue season.

This year I’ve been aiming to get a collection of recipes together ready for the summer I’ve focused a lot on side salads recently as although the men would eat meat and only meat I like to have something else on my plate to make me feel healthier.

Salads and sides


Coleslaw is an old favourite, available in all supermarkets as regular or low fat but it’s so simple to make, especially if you have a food processor. Remember you can change the ingredients and make a fennel slaw or a red cabbage slaw, you can also add to the dressing and make a Thai coleslaw, a Mexican or just alter the flavour with mustard, pesto or ? You tell me!

Tomato salad


Tomato salad – I recently bought lots of different sized and coloured tomatoes using the orange ones too. I chopped them all up and added a little spring onion, olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing

Insalata Caprese A classic Italian summer lunch but can also be offered as a side.

Jersey potato, asparagus and three leaf salad Makes a one stop side that appeals to everyone and is so easy to do

Ratatouille or peperonata are two delicious sides that add lots of flavour to any meal. Don’t forget any leftovers can be warmed to serve with meat, cheese or salamis for another meal.

Ratatouille slow cooker recipe

Spicy potato wedges Tell me who doesn’t like a potato wedge? Can be used to dip in Hummus or as a side to your meal

Caramelised onion tarte tatin as this one made here by Helen of The Crazy Kitchen fame

Quiche ideas

I love a bit of quiche and if it’s on the table will always pick up a slice. Great for vegetarians too, here are some of my favourite tried and tested recipes

Cheeseboard quiche

English breakfast quiche

Mediterranean Quiche

Quattro formaggi and chorizo quiche

Dips and nibbles

Usually some dipping crisps and dips will do but a couple of extras that might catch your eye are

Bacon, cheese and courgette frittatas

Cheese straws

Hummus dip

More than a burger

Ranch pulled pork this is one of my favourite recipes and for an evening barbecue can be put in the slow cooker at 9am and served on the table at 5pm. The delicious rub makes it and make sure it’s pulled with two forks so it’s easy to pick up and place in a bun

pulled pork slow cooker recipe

Tex Mex grill steaks – WeightWatchers recipe. A super recipe if anyone is watching their weight as the perfect portion and very tasty with the added spices.

Meatloaf Never forget the humble meatloaf which can be served cold with salads. This was most likely one of my first ever recipes from school days and the Home Economic classes.

meatloaf recipe


I know everyone is usually stuffed by this pint but guests will always find room for a bit of pudding. Here are some of my personal favourites all tried and tested on my family and extended family too.

Banoffee Cheesecake

Cranachan trifle with forest fruits

Key Lime Pie

Strawberry and blueberry Pavlova

Peach melba

Tiramisu plus Tiramisu video how to

 peach melba dessert

Disclosure: This has been written in collaboration with Barbecues Galore


My husband is a very happy man when the sun is shining and the temperatures pick up as he has only one thing on his mind = BBQ.

This is when the man of the house takes over the kitchen and produces our family meal. No butting in or ‘interfering’ he knows exactly what’s to be done.

He’s in paradise as he fires up his ‘baby’ and to be fair he doesn’t create that much of a mess either as all his cooking is done outside.

bbq sardegna

We’ve been together for almost 10 years and as March enters our lives every year he starts talking about the upcoming bbq season, he was looking at his charcoal bbq the other day and asking me how long he’s had it, I am sure he’s thinking of investing in a new one very soon.

This weekend he put together some chicken kebabs to kick the season off and they were very tasty, simple cubes of chicken interspersed with whole mushrooms, baby tomatoes and green pepper. They were very good dad.

chicken kebabs

I’m hoping, along with the rest of the country I imagine, that after such a wet miserable winter we’ll be treated to a marvellous spring summer allowing lots of outdoor time and good food eaten from Dad’s bbq, with that in mind I’d like to put together a BBQ section here on Mari’s World over the next few months and to kick off I’m collecting all my BBQ recipes done so far together

Tex Mex Grill Steaks

Coronation Chicken



Cranachan Trifle


Plenty more to come