It's spring, time to break out the BBQ

The rain may not have completely stopped for the season, but it’s warm enough to enjoy the patio or deck in between spring showers.

There are a lot of recipes out there and a lot of marinades, rubs and other seasonings to flavor your favorite meats.

Personally, I prefer to barbecue baby back ribs and steaks. However, the other day I entertained a wild idea to do what a bunch of Anderson Rotarians do after an Alaskan fishing trip.

I went to one of their barbecues at the Gazebo in Anderson River Park once and they fixed barbecued oysters on the grill, along with a variety of fish.

Wow, those oysters were really good.

The other day I was at the fish market and saw oysters on sale.

Oooooh, I was tempted enough to bring five of them home. That night I fired up the barbecue and put them on the hot grill and waited for the fire to do its magic.

Within about a half hour the shells started separating enough to get a knife into them and pry them open allowing me to pour some butter and garlic in then let them finish cooking.

If you like oysters, this is a great way to prepare them. The smaller oysters would have been better, but these were still worth the effort.

Fish at the market also caught my eye with Alaskan wild salmon at the top of my barbecue list.

So I brought home some bargain-priced, shrink-wrapped, frozen filets for a later time.

My barbecuing is usually limited to weekends, although if I’m in the mood and not too tired after a day at work, I will slave for a short period of time over a hot grill on a week night as long as I can sip on some type of motivating beverage.

With the weather moderately dry and daylight lingering, it’s a nice time to be on the deck in a patio chair.

One of my favorite barbecue meats is lamb.

There are many ways to prepare lamb on the barbecue. Leg of lamb is always good with the proper seasoning, of course.

Lamb chops are great barbecued. I’ve taken lamb riblets to the grill with a special secret sauce I concoct from scratch.

Basting riblets with your favorite sauce or marinade drippings is an art and must be done carefully and slowly.

Don’t let the flame shoot up and scorch the little beasties.

Barbecuing requires a lot of patience. Some people do better with a microwave or indoor ovens.

Lemon, onion salt and butter will make chicken sing after about 45 minutes on the grill if set on low heat.

Once the meat seems done, move them to the upper grill to finish.

This allows you time to prepare a crisp salad or set out the potato salad made earlier in the day.

Pork is another meat that turns out fine when barbecued correctly.

Some outdoor chefs like to cook pork to death, dousing the meat with barbecue sauce until it falls off the bone.

Personally, I prefer my baby back ribs done medium well, still very juicy and tender.

I usually make a lemon, butter and onion salt sauce with some basic seasonings sprinkled on to get them ready for a few brushings of flavor.

They stay on the grill until they turn golden brown. That’s when it’s time to baste them with a brush, turning over and over in approximately five minute intervals.

Yes, barbecuing is an art that takes some skill and a ton of patience to acquire perfect results.

One thing I’m trying to do this year is broaden my scope of seasonings.

Experimenting is a good thing. It never goes to waste if you have hungry guys around.

If I don’t like the end result, most of the time I know my guys will.

© 2013 Anderson Valley Post. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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