Hardly anything brings people closer together than a sizzling barbeque in the yard. However, at a time when people are being asked to follow social distancing, barbeque starts to feel like a risky activity. As the fourth of July approaches, people are itching to grill some tasty food and enjoy it with their friends and family. So, is there any way to enjoy barbequing without any risk of getting infected?
Imagine a clear blue sky, and you are measuring the distance between chairs and ensuring that they are at least six feet apart. The chairs and tables have been arranged in your backyard. Interestingly, your yard is just big enough to accommodate your family and a couple of your best friends. You are ready to have a hearty meal with your family and friends for the first time since the lockdown.
The last few months were quite hard. Everything was closed, and we had to stockpile food and other necessary items and use them judiciously. People were afraid to go out as the pandemic was spreading its tentacles everywhere. You cannot be certain if the local supermarket is safe or not. Some people tried ordering their groceries online, but the risk remained as the food items could be contaminated. However, it wasn't the scarcity of food or, as a matter of fact, the scarcity of sanitizers and toilet paper that bothered us a lot. It was the lack of interaction.
The pandemic prevented people from going out and meeting others, and humans, as a social animal, find it difficult to stay alone. Yes, you could have made a video call and had a nice chat with your buddies while sipping your favorite drink. However, it wasn't the same as chatting and drinking together for real.
Slowly Returning to Normalcy
Now, as the restrictions and lockdowns are being lifted, people can once again come together. Still, following the guidelines of social distancing, proper hygiene, and wearing a mask are quite essential. Things might be getting back to normal, but the threat of COVID-19 is still looming over our heads.
At many places, the authorities are allowing people to meet up. The members of the groups need to follow the guidelines, and the number of people present at a particular place is limited. So, you can't invite 50 people to the party, for the time being. However, you will face no difficulty in enjoying with your friends and family if the number of people is less than ten.
Preparing for the Party, Safely
Now that you have set up your yard for cooking, and you have sent out the invitations to your closest friends, it is time to get ready for a safe barbeque. We all know how to stay safe during this pandemic, however our skills to handle guests might have deteriorated during the past few months of confinement.
Researchers have discovered that the chances of you getting infected after touching a contaminated object are fairly low, especially if you follow the hygiene guidelines. However, some surfaces can retain the virus for up to three days.
Researchers have discovered that the chances of you getting infected after touching a contaminated object are fairly low, especially if you follow the hygiene guidelines. However, some surfaces can keep the virus active for up to three days.
Small Safety Measures Can Make Big Difference
You can make the items to be used during the barbeque safe by quarantining them for three to four days. Take them out on the day you intend to use them and lay them out while wearing protective gloves. First and foremost, you need to ensure that the tableware is safe for use. You can wrap a set of plates, silverware, glasses as well as napkins in different trays and put them in a clean bag. You can also wrap the boxes and cans of snacks that you will consume during the barbeque.
This step might feel a little awkward, but you can also send some instructions on how to navigate around the house and use the bathroom along with the invitations. Prepare for the guests in a way that they can access the house and bathroom without increasing the risk of infection. Keep sanitizers and paper towels nearby for easy access.
On the day of the party, carefully take out all the furniture and set it out on the lawn. It would be better if you sanitize the furniture once again. Use protective gear and gloves while doing the cleaning. When the furniture is set, ensure that you have kept sanitizers and wipes closeby.
The Party Day
If you serve the food right off the grill, it will be quite safe for consumption. Additionally, it would require fewer utensils for storage and will be hot and delicious. You can serve grilled chicken as it can be prepared quite easily. You can marinate the chicken beforehand, and unlike steak and lamb, you don't need to carve it or handle it in any other way once it is cooked. Fish fillet, hot dogs, and burgers would be a great choice too.
In the current scenario, it would be better if you are careful with the garnishing and condiments. Give a small bottle of ketchup to each group or serve them the condiments and ketchup yourself after putting on gloves. Ensure that there are lots of spoons for each individual and you can disinfect them easily.
There are few items that need to be made in advance. If you are planning to do so, then you must segregate these items for three days before serving them carefully during the party.
A barbeque cannot be imagined without drinks. You can ask the guests to keep their glasses on a table and then step back. You can then fill up their glasses while maintaining a safe distance from them. It would be better if you could say cheers without actually clashing your glasses.
COVID-19 proof barbeque requires a lot more planning as compared to the good old barbeque experience. However, it is for the safety of the people, and it doesn't compromise on the fun. You still get a chance to be with your friends and enjoy good food.
Enjoy Your BBQ Safely
Once the guests arrive, you tell them the rules once again and start the party. Just be careful and follow the guidelines and maintain social distancing. You will see that all the awkwardness about this unique barbeque starts to vanish as you have a couple of drinks and some delicious food.
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