I recently attended a pig roast where many different types of barbecued foods, such as ribs, chicken wings, and hot dogs, were served. My job title of etiquette consultant must have intimidated many of the guests, because when the time came to eat, they all waited to see how I was going to eat the barbecued feast.
A barbecue is an informal affair. Please don’t worry about which fork and knife to use. Go ahead and use your fingers in lieu of utensils. However, don’t try to imitate a feast of the Medieval time period by picking up a big ole’ turkey leg or steak with your fingers and begin gnawing away on it. Larger pieces of meat should be cut with a knife and fork.
Even though the use of fingers is allowed at a barbecue, it is still imperative to remember other etiquette skills such as eating with your mouth closed, passing foods rather than reaching across the table, using a napkin rather than licking your fingers, or avoiding the use of a toothpick in public.