The weather may have been a bit wild and windy over the last day or so but there's no need to despair just yet - there's still a bit more warm weather heading our way. Which is great news if you're a diehard fan of barbecuing and al fresco dining, but what if you're vegan or have a vegan guest?Burgers are always a popular option, so try placing a piece or 2 of sliced Sheese such as White Cheddar on top of a veggie burger after you have cooked it on one side and flipped it over. During the last 3 minutes of cooking, add your Sheese then as it starts to melt transfer the veggie burger and all to your bun (with some crispy lettuce on the bottom half, and a slice of tomato on last for the perfect Sheese burger! Incidentally, if you're short of burgers try barbecuing slices of Bute Island's Vegandeli Mock Ham, they're a surprisingly good subsitute. You can even use a large pastry cutter to make "round burgers" from the slices too. If you want a gluten free option, using Sheese slices also works in the same way with the great texture of large Portobello mushrooms. Sheese itself can be barbecued as-is in thick slices or chunks using a "Melty" block Sheese such as Smoked Cheddar, Blue or Edam on their own directly on the grill over the hot coals until browned (remember not to leave too long or forget, as you don't want to lose it!) it's crispy on the outside, soft and cheesily succulent on the inside - mmm, very moreish indeed! For something a little different, here are five other vegan BBQ options that you might want to give a go too and serve with vegan cheese.
Yes, it sounds a bit strange but little triangles of watermelon chucked on the barbecue are actually incredibly tasty. Wait until everyone's had their fill of more traditional barbecue fare and then stick some on the grill for a little surprise pudding at the end. Plus it's really healthy to boot!
If you've only ever boiled asparagus before, stop. Just stop. Grilled or roasted asparagus is so much nicer and the veggie works perfectly on the barbecue. Just drizzle them over with some olive oil and a little sprinkling of salt and pepper, and you're good to go. Super simple and super tasty.
Aubergine ("eggplant" in U.S.)
succulent and tasty, aubergines are another perfect example of a vegetable that works brilliantly barbecued. Brush with olive oil and sear on both sides for a really tasty veggie addition to your plate - you're sure to be coming back for a second piece, if there's any left that is! Try coating the slices with a BBQ or chilli sauce, or squeezing a bit of lime over the top for even more flavour and tang. Aubergines are also a good choice cubed for skewers too, so make the most of your barbecue while the sun shines (or if you're in Scotland, at least while it's dry anyway ;) )
Grill your tofu if you've never done this before and you'll find it's a brilliant way of cooking this particular foodstuff. Stick it on a skewer with some onions, tomatoes and peppers, add your choice of seasoning and then serve up with some fluffy lemony couscous.
Jackfruit pulled 'pork'
If you've got meat-eaters coming over, serve them up some vegan jackfruit pulled 'pork' sandwiches. Jackfruit is a great choice for a barbecue because the texture is very meat-like, so it's a great vegan meat alternative for sausages and burgers if you want to try something different.