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Singing chef rustles up honour.

A CHEF who sings with a Swansea choir has been named Britain's best barbecue cook.

Ben Bartlett, 32, a member of the Swansea-based Black Welsh Mountain Choir, won the title from food-industry experts.

As a result, he represented Britain in the world's biggest barbecue, the three-day American Royal, where he came 13th out of 450 entries from across the globe.

Ben, whose family come from Morriston, Swansea, but who is now based at the Pump House in Bristol, has joined the TV celebrity-chef circuit.

He has made appearances on Good Morning and other daytime TV shows and recently completed filming for his own series, Flamin' Barbecues, on the Discovery Channel.

He said, 'I love grilling. It brings the 'caveman' out in you.

'Backyard or back-garden barbecuing is something anyone can do at any time of the year with a few cans of beer, some fresh meat and some pals.

'It's so sociable, with everyone moving around and talking to different people all the time, not stuck in one position on the table.'

Ben, who cooked for Tony Blair and Nelson Mandela among other world leaders at the Cardiff summit, learned his trade in London and in Italy, where he was a chef for four years.

The award-winning chef always barbecues his Christmas dinners, despite the British weather.

'For this Christmas, a good marquee could come in handy if it snows or rains but barbecuing Christmas dinner is deliciously different.

'Always remember, do not stuff a turkey that is to be done on the barbecue. But you can place an apple in the cavity as this will keep it moist from the middle.'

Ben is planning a Caribbean turkey this Christmas for his family in Wales to help them 'get a sunshine feeling'.

Here is Ben's recipe for Tropical Christmas Turkey.

Tbsp ground ginger.

2 tbsps brown sugar.

1 Squeezed orange.

1 Small liquidised pineapple.

1 Liquidised passion fruit.

1 Squeezed lime.

2 Cloves chopped garlic.

1 tbsp Soy sauce.

1 Turkey, 3-4kgs (6-8lbs) which will serve 8-10 people.

Method

Mix ginger, sugar, salt and pepper in a bowl, then add the juices, garlic and soy and mix, keeping a little of the sauce separate. Use the rest to marinate the turkey and keep in the fridge overnight.

Tie the wings securely to the body and legs to the tail. Insert the spit in the front-end of the tail and through the bird so it balances securely.

A foil drip under the pan will control flare ups. Fill the drip pan with water and close the BBQ lid and grill over medium heat for three to three-and-a- half hours. Baste the turkey with the leftover marinade.

Cover with foil after removing from the BBQ and let stand for 20 minutes before carving.
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Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Dec 5, 2003
Words:461
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