As the weather becomes increasingly pleasant and the sun begins shining its way through the clouds, my mind turns to one thing: barbeque.
With so many golden grilling opportunities coming up such as Memorial Day, Father’s Day and the Fourth of July, there is no reason not to dust off the old BBQ.
While hamburgers and hot dogs are the classic BBQ fare, get creative and mix things up a bit. Foods such as beer can chicken, shish kabobs, roasts and even shrimp can be grilled on the barbie to a delicious effect.
Hamburgers and hotdogs don’t have to be boring. There are many ways to get creative with them as well. For example, try different themed hamburgers such as making a Hawaiian burger by adding pineapple or putting grilled onions on the hotdogs.
Contrary to popular belief, meat isn’t the only food that can be BBQed; peppers and mushrooms can be skewered and grilled, corn and potatoes can be wrapped in aluminum foil and grilled and whole artichokes can be slathered in butter and grilled.
No barbeque can be complete without baked beans and salad. In addition to the standard tossed, potato and macaroni salads, fruit, pistachio and shrimp salads will make great additions to a BBQ party.
Would any BBQ party be complete without a cooler full of ice cold beverages? If it is especially hot out and you plan to have your party all day you might want to buy bags of block ice instead of the standard bags of party ice because the blocks last longer.
In addition to the delicious food, part of the fun of a BBQ party is to get together with friends and family outdoors and have some fun.
There are many ways to have some fun at a BBQ party; from tossing the old pigskin around, to playing backyard badminton using your clothes line as a net. Countless other games can be played as well such as horseshoes, lawn darts, croquet and bocce ball, with the only limitation being the imagination.
With so many grilling possibilities at your disposal, you might just invent a special holiday just to have an excuse to fire up the old grill.
Melt-In-Your-Mouth Barbecued Ribs
o 2 sides pork spareribs (about 6 pounds), separated
o 1 (28-ounce) can chunky tomato sauce
o 1/3 cup brown sugar
o 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
o 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
o 1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce
o 1 tablespoon chili powder
o 2 teaspoons ground cumin
o 1 teaspoon paprika
o 1 teaspoon garlic powder
o 1/2 teaspoon salt
o 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Place the spareribs in the bottom of a slow cooker. In a medium bowl, whisk together the remaining ingredients. Reserve 6 tablespoons for BBQ Pizza.
Pour the mixture over the spareribs. Cover and cook on LOW for six to eight hours or on high for three to four hours.
Reserve 1/2 of the ribs and pull the meat from the bones for the BBQ Pizza recipe.
Pulled Pork with Mango BBQ Sauce
o 1 boneless pork shoulder (Boston butt), about 3 pounds, excess fat removed
o 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
o 1 tablespoon paprika
o 2 teaspoons kosher salt
o 1/4 cup vegetable oil
o 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
o 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
o 1 onion, finely minced
o 2 tablespoons minced ginger
o 1 serrano pepper, thinly sliced (seeds discarded if you don’t like it spicy)
o Kosher salt
o 2 cups mango puree
o 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
o 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
o 2 tablespoons molasses
o 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
o Brioche rolls, split
o Bread and butter pickles
Rub: Combine the rub ingredients, in a small bowl and massage it into the pork shoulder until well coated. Set aside while you make BBQ sauce. You could do this a day ahead and keep refrigerated until ready to use.
BBQ sauce: In a large saucepan, warm the oil, over low heat, until hot and shimmering. Add the cumin and fennel; they should splutter upon contact – be careful! Once the spluttering subsides, add the onions, ginger and serrano and a little salt, to taste. Saute until they soften but don’t let them get any color. Add the rest of the sauce ingredients. Simmer about 5 minutes. Taste and season.
Add the pork shoulder to the saucepan, coating it with the sauce. Cover, and gently simmer until the pork falls apart easily, stirring and turning often, about 3 hours.
Remove the pork from the saucepan and shred it using two forks. Return it to the sauce and stir to coat with the sauce. Put a generous spoonful of the pork inside a brioche bun, top with a few slices of pickle and serve.
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