What is indirect cooking?
Why cook indirect on your barbecue?
You've got your barbecue, it's out there, in the garden, on the balcony, but do you go beyond the standard burgers and sausages when you cook?
Well you should, because it is a lot easier to do so than you may think!
By cooking using the indirect cooking method, you can turn your barbecue into an oven, multiplying the dishes you cook on it, and enjoying the added benefit of the barbecue flavour.
This means you can get the most out of your new investment, and start using it all year around too!
Indirect cooking simply means that you are not cooking directly above the heat source, and whether you have a gas, charcoal or electric barbecue, cooking indirectly is a lot easier than you may think.
Shown in the image is the indirect cooking setup on the Q barbecues.
Indirect cooking on charcoal.
To cook indirectly on your charcoal barbecue you simply have to divide the charcoal on either side of your kettle, as shown in the image. If you haven't already we suggest you look into buying either some charcoal dividers or briquette holders as they will make the job a lot easier.
Light your charcoal using your chimney starter and once ready pour the charcoal into or behind the holders. If you want to catch the fats and juices and retain some moisture whilst cooking you may add a large drip tray between the charcoal before adding the meat. This will also help keep the temperature down.
Put your cooking grate in and place your meat on top, in between the charcoal. You want to think about your barbecue as an oven now, and your lid thermometer should, therefore, be showing the same temperature as you would be cooking your joint of meat at in the oven.
We always recommend using the Weber briquettes when cooking indirectly, as they will give you a lower heat than lumpwood, for a longer period of time.
Indirect cooking on gas.
How you cook indirectly on gas, depends on which one of Weber's gas barbecue's you have.
Let's firstly look at the Q range of barbecues. As these are mainly a one burner barbecue you will always be cooking over the heat source.
So to turn your barbecue into an oven, but still get that gorgeous barbecue flavour you need a roasting shield and Roast rack, these come in various sizes depending on whether you have the Q100/1000 range or 200/2000 and 300/3000 ranges.
Roasting Shields: Q100/1000, Q200/2000, Q300/3000.
Roasting Racks: Q100/1000, Q200/2000, Q300/3000.
Turn your Q shaped burner on, and place the shield and rack in the barbecue. Ensure your barbecue is up to the desired temperature, and place your meat in the barbecue. The roasting shield will deflect the direct heat from the burner, and allow the hot air circulating in the barbecue to do the cooking, however as it has holes alongside both edges the fats and juices from the meat will still run off and vaporise, giving you that well-loved barbecue flavour. The Roast Rack will lift the meat off the shield and allow the hot air to circulate all around, whilst letting the juices run off.
On two burner Weber barbecues you may find that you need to use the roast shield and roast rack as well, as your burners will both be on and you need to protect the underside of the meat. The method is much like with the Q barbecues. Turn your burners on and ensure your barbecue is up to the desired temperature, once this has happened place your meat, with the heat shield if necessary, on the barbecue and away you cook.
On three burners and above, indirect cooking is very easy. Simply turn the two (or more) outer burners on as shown in the image, until you reach the temperature you want to be cooking at and then place your meat in the middle above the burners which are turned off. As you are not cooking directly above a burner which is turned off you do not need to use the roasting shields.
Indirect cooking on electric.
In Webers range of electric barbecues, you find the Q1400 and the Pulse barbecues. Cooking indirect on these is very similar to cooking indirect on the Q range of barbecues, in that you will need the roast shields and roast racks. You then get your barbecue up to the temperature you want to be cooking at, by adjusting the electrical elements, and once you have reached your temperature you place your meat on the roast rack, close the lid and cook away.
For all the latest barbecues and accessories you can check out our online Weber store.