Each kebab needs
3 halved bits of sausage (1.5 whole sausages)
3 halved rashers or bacon (1.5 whole rashers)
3 cubes of chicken
4 bits of cut up vegetable
If you light the barbecue as you start to prepare the kebabs (so the barbecue has time to heat up and for the coals to get to the white heat stage) the timings should be pretty nearly right.
For each two kebabs (one adult portion or two child portions)
Wooden or metal skewers, if using wooden skewers pre soak in water, to prevent them from burning on the barbecue.
3 proper sausages, the sort that look like they came from a happy pig.
3 rashers of back bacon (smoked or unsmoked as you prefer).
1 small chicken breast or half a large chicken breast.
Selection of vegetables, whatever you have, ideally things like onion, mushrooms, peppers, courgette, aubergines and baby tomatoes.
For the barbecue sauce (enough for 12 kebabs, any leftover can be stored in the fridge ready for the next impromptu barbecue, or eaten with sausage sandwiches).
3 tbsp olive oil
110g/4oz onion, finely diced.
1 garlic clove, crushed.
200g barbecue sauce (don't weigh it, instead look at the size of the bottle and judge what 200g would be).
freshly ground black pepper.
4 tbsp tomato purée.
Start with the sauce. Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a heavy stainless steel saucepan over a gentle heat and add the onion and garlic. Cover and sweat for four minutes, until soft and a little golden. Off the heat, add the tomato purée and stir in well. Add all the other ingredients. You want a consistency that is 'just runny' you may need to add a tablespoon or two of water to achieve this. Allow to cool.
For the kebabs start with the vegetables. For each kebab you need four bits of vegetable. Cut whatever vegetables you have into 2cm slices (courgettes), 2cm squares (peppers) or 2cm dice (aubergines). The baby tomatoes are fine as they are and mushrooms may need to be halved if they are big.
Squeeze the sausage meat out of the sausages. This is a job children love. Use fingers from both hands to pinch the middle of each sausage. Leave one hand pinching the middle of the sausage while using the other hand to push one half of the sausage meat out of the skin. Then push the other half of the sausage meat out. Keep the two little tubes of sausage separately, don't mash them together even though it might seem tempting.
Cut each rasher of bacon in half width wise, use this to wrap around the middle of the halved skinless sausages.
Cut the chicken into evenly sized cubes so that you have three cubes for each kebab.
If you are using wooden skewers take them out of the water.
Thread the skewers with the vegetables and the meat. The order I prefer is vegetable, sausage/bacon, chicken, vegetable, sausage/bacon, chicken, vegetable, chicken, sausage/bacon and then finish off with a piece of vegetable. Throughly wash the hands of everyone involved with cutting up and touching the raw meat.
After many years of cooking huge barbecues at big hotels I like to completely cook the meat for a barbecue in the oven and then just put the meat on the barbecue in front of the guests for show and a bit of chargrilled flavour. Apparently this is being a kill joy. So by all means cook the kebabs on the barbecue.
It is vital that the kebabs are fully cooked through. Take no chances! Depending on the heat and the distance of the grill from the coals the kebabs will take just under ten minutes for each side. Cut through a piece of sausage and a piece of chicken to check it is cooked right through to the centre. In the last minute of cooking paint on some of the barbecue sauce so the kebab is fully coated but don't allow the sugar sauce to burn.
Serve with extra barbecue sauce and some barbecue classics like potato salad, tomato and onion salad, garlic bread or green salad.