As the summer heats up and you remember that it's your turn to have the family and friends over this Christmas for your traditional Sunday Lamb Roast. As you desperately dust off that old spit rotisserie from the shed in preparation for the feast, you may find yourself asking "What type of charcoal should I use"?

Well, in this article we hope to take the mystery out of navigating the world of charcoal.

There are many different types of solid fuel (Charcoal) products in the marketplace and today we are only going to look at a few of them. It's interesting to note, that of all the different types of charcoal, each have their own unique advantages & disadvantages:

1) Heat beads (Including Easy-Lite) - Easy to find (most supermarkets stock these products), most common known type of solid fuel available on the market. What I like is the ease of use and product availability. What I dislike is the food taste after cooking and the rocky ash (if it gets on your food). Burn time approx 3 hours. Overall I give it 7.5 out of 10.

2) Etosha - A Natural Timber made from intruder bush (Imported from Namibia, South Africa). It is easy to light and has a burn time of approx 2 hrs & is a High Heat low ash product and is only available in selected specialty stores. What I Like is how easy it is to light and that it adds that wood fired taste to the meat when cooked, plus it is a natural timber product (made from real wood). What I dislike is the burn time of 2 hours is short for cooking a whole animal, but perfect for a smaller BBQ like The Cyprus Grill. Overall I give it 9 out of 10.

3) Firebrand - Natural (Compressed Sawdust). The fact that it is made by compacting sawdust makes it slightly difficult to ignite, but once on, it has very high heat output & the burn time is up to 5 hours (Perfect for cooking a whole lamb). What I like is the High Heat & the 5 Hour burn time. What I dislike is the time taken to light the coal. Overall I give it 8.5 out of 10.

My own personal preference is to use both Etosha & Firebrand charcoal as each has its unique properties. 1st, I start off with the Etosha charcoal as it is easy to light and then I add the Firebrand charcoal for the longevity. As the meat starts to cook I then top up with the Etosha charcoal for added smoke and flavour.

Happy Summer!!!!

From The BBQ Store

(you can check out our charcoal range at:

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