Tag Archives: Grilling

Blueberry Barbecue Chicken

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Happy Hump Day! It’s the week no one can ever believe is upon us, myself included, despite the fact that it happens to us every year: the week before Labor Day!! Aaaahhhh!!!

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So this week I’m making the push to get the last bit of summery recipes blogged for you. Also since Labor Day is right around the corner, I’m sharing a delicious grilled recipe, along with a recipe round-up of ideas for your weekend, since most of us red-blooded Americans turn into grilling machines on summery three-day weekends.

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This is my blueberry contribution to the blogosphere for this 2014 summer season, and it’s a dang good one. This barbecue sauce is complex, fruity and sweet, yet also a touch spicy and decidedly savory. It pairs perfectly with chicken, which is what I was craving for it, but it would be lovely with turkey or pork too, I think.

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Enjoy it with sweet, seasonal blueberries for a few days longer!

And now for a GRILLING RECIPE ROUND-UP: (in alphabetical order)

Baba Ghanoush
Banh Mi
Chili Dogs
Classic Barbecue Chicken
Cumin-Cilantro Chicken Sliders
Grilled Cherry Tomato, Garlic and Goat Cheese Toasts
Grilled Romaine Hearts with Bacon Blue Cheese Vinaigrette
Grilled Salmon with Strawberry Salsa
Grilled Salmon with Tamarind-Peach Barbecue Sauce
Grilled Shrimp with Tarragon-Tabasco Butter
Italian Dressing Grilled Shrimp
Italian Sausage Hoagies with Caprese Relish
Jamaican Jerk Chicken with Ginger Barbecue Sauce
Jamaican Jerk Snapper
Kansas City Barbecued Spare Ribs
Maple Glazed Baby Back Ribs
Margarita Glazed Baby Back Ribs
Mexico City Street Corn
Molasses Mustard Pork Chops
Naan Bread
Pimento Cheese and Bacon Burgers
Rosemary Skewered Chipotle Shrimp
Salade-aux-Lardons Pizza
Skirt Steak with Green and Red Chimichurris
Steakhouse Pizza
Summer Corn and Roasted Pepper Pie
Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks

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{One Year Ago: Sweet Cherry Hand Pies, Plum Pecan Pancakes, Zucchini Arugula Lasagna, Cherry Upside Down Cake}
{Two Years Ago: Pickled Peach Orzotto}

Source: barbecue sauce lightly adapted from Sauces, Rubs and Marinades by Steven Raichlen

Ingredients:
1 quart fresh blueberries
1 large celery rib, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 small carrot, peeled and chopped
1 garlic clove, smashed and peeled
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup honey
1 tbs molasses
1 tbs ketchup
1/2 tbs sweet paprika
Kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground mustard
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp celery seed
1/8 tsp cayenne, or more to taste
Pinch of ground cloves
1 whole chicken, cut up into 8 parts

Directions:
Preheat an outdoor grill to very high heat. Remove the chicken from the refrigerator and let it come up to room temperature.
Make the barbecue sauce: puree the blueberries in your blender.
In a medium saucepan, combine the blueberry puree, celery, onion, bell pepper, carrot and garlic. Gently simmer over medium heat until the vegetables are soft and the sauce is thick, 15-20 minutes.
Wipe or rinse out your blender to get some of the blueberry skins out, but no need to really wash it. Pour the contents of the saucepan into the blender and puree until smooth. The sauce should be thick but pourable; add water if too thick.
Taste and correct for seasoning, if necessary. Pour it back into the saucepan and keep warm over low heat. When ready to use it on the chicken, pour about 40-50% of the sauce into a small bowl or cup.
Trim the chicken, then season generously with salt and pepper on both sides. Place it on the grill skin side up. Cover the grill and let it cook about 10-12 minutes. Flip the chicken, then baste the cooked side liberally with the barbecue sauce. Let the skin get really crispy, then with about 5 minutes to go (or when the internal thermometer reads about 150-155), flip the chicken again and liberally baste the skin side. Cover and let it finish cooking through. Rotate the pieces as needed if your grill has a hot spot. The whole thing will take between 20 and 30 minutes total, but please use a meat thermometer as it is the only way to be sure. You want to remove the chicken when internal temperature reads 165 F.
Let the chicken rest for 5-10 minutes. Serve with the extra reserved barbecue sauce.

Grilled Cherry Tomato, Garlic and Goat Cheese Toasts

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So, picky eater that I was growing up, I actually rarely objected to tomatoes – in fact, I would even go so far as to say that I liked them as a child. When I was in grad school, in my early twenties, I did a summer abroad program in Austria, and every afternoon I would venture out to the closest farmer’s market and buy a large, gorgeous, in-season, juicy red tomato. I’d stand out in what Europeans think is a hot sun and eat the whole thing like it was an apple, juices running down my hands and dripping off my elbow to the ground. It was my afternoon snack; it was a daily moment of pure happiness, the kind that the freshest and most beautiful food can bring.

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So imagine this – I married a certified tomato hater. Apparently, Matt had zero tolerance for them growing up, even to the point he would pick them out of his sandwiches or fast food burgers. (Actually, when I think about it, that habit of his lasted well beyond childhood…)

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Determined spitfire that I am though, I saw this as a challenge rather than an incompatibility, and I wasn’t content to file it in the agree-to-disagree cabinet, despite the fact that no marriage doesn’t have such a filing cabinet, ours included. I pestered asked inquisitive questions about his dislike of tomatoes until he finally told me in detail why he hated them so much; turns out he had eaten one too many out of season tomatoes and then decided that all tomatoes were tasteless and mealy.

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This is pretty easy to correct, right? I simply make sure we only eat raw tomatoes, in any form, when they are perfectly in season, and I’m fortunate that I can get local tomatoes from either Jersey or Long Island, so they don’t suffer in transit to our local grocery store or farmer’s market. And now, Matt loves in-season, good-quality tomatoes (especially heirlooms). Yea!!

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And thus, I can make lovely appetizers like this one, and Matt will happily eat it and love it. You should too before summer tomatoes disappear for another year.

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{One Year Ago: Summer Corn and Roasted Pepper Pie}
{Two Years Ago: Creamy Smoked Trout on Pumpernickel Toasts, Vanilla Ice Cream with Caramel-Chocolate-Peanut Butter Brittle}

Source: adapted from My Paris Kitchen by David Lebovitz

Ingredients:
About 1 lb. cherry tomatoes
Olive oil
Kosher salt and black pepper
3-4 cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced
8 oz. goat cheese, softened
1 tbs minced herbs, such as parsley, thyme, basil, or a combination
1 tsp minced garlic
1 loaf of round country bread, sliced somewhat thickly, then each individual slice cut in half crosswise
1 clove garlic, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
A few sprigs or leaves of herbs, for garnish

Directions:
Soak some wooden skewers in water for about 30 minutes. Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. Thread the cherry tomatoes onto the skewers, then set them on a plate. Brush them well with olive oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Grill them a few minutes on each side, turning as you go, until they are charred and the skins are starting to bust. Don’t take them too far – you don’t want them cooked completely through. They should still have some bite to them; we’re not making tomato sauce here.
When done, remove the skewers to a plate and let them cool slightly. Then use a fork to carefully remove the tomatoes from the skewers.
Meanwhile, preheat a small skillet over medium-low to medium heat. Add a nice film of olive oil to coat the bottom of the skillet. Add the garlic slices and cook them slowly, until they are golden and softened, about 5 minutes (but watch closely as you do not want to burn the garlic!). Remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate. Set aside.
Also meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix together the goat cheese, minced herbs, minced garlic, salt and pepper until smooth. Set aside.
Once the tomatoes have come off the grill, place the bread slices on the grill, just to toast and get some marks. This will take about a minute per side. When the bread comes off the grill, immediately rub at least one side (or both sides if you prefer) with the cut garlic.
To assemble, use a butter knife to spread some of the goat cheese onto one side of the bread. Sprinkle a few of the sliced, cooked garlic on top, then top it with 3-4 cherry tomatoes, pressing slightly to nestle them into the cheese. Place the assembled breads onto a platter and garnish with herbs. Serve immediately.

Pimento Cheese and Bacon Burgers

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I think this week will be a themed week here on the blog, and our theme this week will be – The South! I suppose I could exaggerate a bit and tell you I carefully planned this out, but in reality, I was perusing my to-blog list of recipes and found three that had this in common. I’ll be sharing two recipes from the United States Deep South, followed by one from the south of France! So, there may be a little bit of “one of these is not like the others,” but on the other hand, you know what they say: “the South is the same everywhere!”

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Although I grew up with it, it’s only been recently that I’ve developed an appreciation for pimento cheese. Childhood Julie hated mayonnaise, so pimento cheese was persona non grata in my mouth. I’ve since come around, which is incredibly fortunate, because had I not, then I would’ve missed out on this insane burger!

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This one is fairly rich and decadent, yes, but well worth it for your splurge day. It’s very simple to throw together, as a plus, and I’m really glad these are filling, because had they not been, I would have eaten two of them. Y’all enjoy now.

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A quick recipe note: a major cheeseburger pet peeve of many is when the cheese is not completely melted. Don’t get too fussy about that with these burgers. Pimento cheese is not a melted cheese dish, so if it doesn’t melt all the way atop these burgers, it will not taste weird or have an off-putting texture at all.

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{One Year Ago: Sour Cherry Cobbler, Beer Margaritas}

Source: adapted from Barbecue Addiction by Bobby Flay:

Ingredients:
1/3 cup mayonnaise
Kosher salt and black pepper
Pinch of cayenne
6 oz. sharp, yellow cheddar cheese, shredded
2 oz. jarred chopped pimentos, drained
1 ½ lbs. ground beef chuck
2 tbs canola oil, plus more for the grill grate
4 hamburger buns, split and toasted
8 slices of bacon, cooked until crisp

Directions:
Whisk together the mayonnaise, salt, pepper, and cayenne. Add the cheese and pimentos and gently fold until combined. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Heat your grill to high for direct heat grilling. Oil the grate.
For the meat into 4 evenly sized burger patties, and then make an indentation in the center of each with your thumb or forefinger. Brush both sides with canola oil, and season liberally with salt and pepper.
Place the burgers on the grill, not crowding them, and cook to medium, about 4 minutes per side. During the last minute of cooking, spoon a dollop of pimento cheese on top of each burger and quickly spread it out with the back of the spoon. Cover, and cook 1 minute, until the cheese has just melted.
Remove the burgers from the grill and place each on the burger buns. Top the cheese with 2 slices of crispy bacon, then with the top bun. Serve immediately.

Margarita Glazed Baby Back Ribs

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I grew up in Texas (duh), and this past Memorial Day weekend served as a learning experience about growing up in Texas, which was the realization that I have *never* had pork ribs that weren’t smoked. Where I’m from, pork ribs equals barbecue, which equals smoked. Ribs on the grill use wood chips, and even oven baked barbecue ribs have liquid smoke in the ingredient list.

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These ribs are not smoked in any way. Grilled, yes. Smoked, no. So upon taking my first bite, I was so accustomed to that smoky flavor I automatically associate with pork ribs, that my knee jerk reaction was along the lines of “Oh god, what’s wrong with them?! Oh no, I screwed them up!” And then I took a second bite and realized that, no, they are actually quite tasty, and smoking ribs with a more delicate flavor profile such as this might be a bit weird.

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And then when I realized that these non-smoked ribs were quite the new phenomenon for me, I actually felt a tad silly, but then shrugged and kept eating them, due to the supreme deliciousness and all. It was a lovely switch-up from the regular barbecue types of pork ribs I’m more used to. And of course, you simply must serve these with margaritas. Is that even a choice? Enjoy!

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Some margarita drink ideas: Beer Margaritas; Mesa Grill Margaritas; Apple Cider Margaritas; Blood Orange Margaritas; Frozen Cactus Pear Margaritas; and for dessert – Chocolate Margaritas!
You might also enjoy: Margarita Fish Tacos; Margarita Meringue Pie; Maple Glazed Baby Back Ribs; Kansas City Barbecued Spare Ribs

{One Year Ago: Cherry Almond Galette}

Source: Slightly adapted from Fine Cooking Magazine, August/September 2011

Ingredients:

MARINADE:
Juice from 1 medium orange
2 tsp lime zest
Juice from 2 medium limes
¼ cup silver tequila
3 tbs dark agave syrup or honey
3 tbs olive oil
2 tbs orange liqueur
2 tbs soy sauce
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tbs ancho chile powder
1 tsp ground cumin
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 or 2 racks pork baby back ribs (about 1 ½ lbs. each) silver skin membrane removed *

GLAZE/SAUCE:
½ cup silver tequila
½ cup fresh orange juice (from 1 large orange)
¼ cup fresh lime juice (from 2 medium limes)
2 tbs dark agave syrup or honey
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro

*This makes enough marinade and glaze for 2 racks of ribs. I used only 1 rack (small apartment sized grill) and then tossed 1 lb. of shrimp with the remainder. I also used half the glaze on the shrimp. You could also cut the marinade and glaze in half for 1 rack of ribs.

Directions:
First, marinate the ribs. In a medium bowl, whisk the orange juice, lime zest, lime juice, tequila, agave, oil, orange liqueur, soy sauce, garlic, chile powder, cumin, 1 tbs salt and 1 tsp black pepper. Cut each rack of ribs in half and place in a large resealable plastic baggie. Pour the marinade over the ribs (or only half the marinade if using only 1 rack) and seal tightly. Shake the bag to make sure all the ribs are coated. Lay the bag in a baking pan in case of leaks. Refrigerate overnight, turning a few times to redistribute the marinade.
Next, grill the ribs. Preheat your charcoal or gas grill for indirect cooking over low to medium-low heat. Remove the ribs from the marinade, shaking off the excess. Pour the marinade into a small saucepan and set aside.*
Arrange the ribs bone side down over indirect heat. Cover the grill and let them go for around 1 ½ to 2 hours. They are ready when the meat is tender and the meat is starting to pull away from the bones, about ¼-inch.
Meanwhile, make the glaze. Add the tequila, orange juice, lime juice, and agave to the reserved marinade. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to maintain a steady simmer. Simmer until it is starting to turn syrupy, about 20 to 25 minutes. If you are not using the reserved marinade, simply add the glaze ingredients, except the cilantro, to a small saucepan and simmer until it looks a little bit syrupy and appropriate texture for glazing meat. This will not take as long, so be watchful.
When the glaze is the correct consistency, shut off the heat and add salt and black pepper to taste, if necessary.
Once the glaze is made, finish the ribs. Increase the grill heat to medium high and generously brush the meat side of each rack with the glaze. Use tongs to turn the ribs over so that the glazed side is down over the direct heat part, 3-5 minutes. Brush the bone side with some glaze, flip, and grill 3-5 minutes more. Transfer the ribs to a cutting board, tent loosely with foil, and let rest about 10 minutes.
Add the cilantro to the remaining glaze and pour into a small bowl or ramekin for passing at the table. Slice the ribs (I recommend a serrated knife – ironically it gets the cleanest, easiest cuts), and let everyone dive in, using the remaining glaze as a sauce.

*If you are hesitant to do this, I understand, and I wouldn’t advise this for pregnant women. You can make the glaze without the leftover marinade and it should still taste fine.

Steakhouse Pizza

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I’m continuing PIZZA WEEK with a very tasty offering I’ve adapted from one of Ree’s recipes (from her second book). She has several pizza recipes in this book, but the Steakhouse Pizza was the one that jumped out at me the most. My family and I are steakhouse kind of people. It’s pretty tough to beat a good, leisurely meal at a nice steakhouse. And it seemed like that was our go-to for special occasions.

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Something about the steakhouse atmosphere is so fancy, yet warm and inviting. The steaks are the main attraction, of course, but I know of no one who doesn’t also dine at steakhouses for the sides. The potatoes, ohhhhh the potatoes. Not to mention, salads always taste better from a steakhouse, don’t they?

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So here is quintessential steakhouse in pizza form. The crust stands in as the starch you would normally get from the potato, and this pizza is COVERED in medium-rare, tender, luscious steak slices. There’s balsamic vinegar and tomato sauce as a nod to those tomato salads with balsamic vinaigrette, and then just before serving, you drizzle on some Worcestershire sauce. Oh, it’s just heaven. Even just writing this is making my stomach growl, and is making me wonder when Matt and I are going to be visiting Ruths Chris’ Steakhouse again!

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{One Year Ago: Caramelized Onion, Pear and Goat Cheese Pizza}

Source: adapted from The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Food From My Frontier by Ree Drummond

Ingredients:
2 (1 lb.) balls of pizza dough
1 ½ to 2 lbs. skirt steak or flank steak
Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
1 large red onion, peeled and sliced into ½-inch thick rings
3 tbs balsamic vinegar
1 tbs olive oil, plus more for the grill
2 cups good-quality marinara sauce, store-bought or homemade
1 ½ lbs. fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
Worcestershire sauce, for drizzling
Shaved Pecorino Romano cheese, for finishing

Directions:
Let the pizza dough balls come up to room temperature; this takes about 30 minutes. Preheat your indoor or outdoor grill to medium-high heat. Brush with oil if using an outdoor grill.
Season the steak with salt and pepper. Set aside.
Drizzle the onion slices with 1 tbs balsamic vinegar, then with olive oil. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper.
Add the remaining 2 tbs balsamic vinegar to the marinara sauce. Stir to combine.
Preheat your oven to 425 F. Set a rack in the center of the oven.
Once your grill is good and hot, if you’re using an indoor grill, drizzle the side where the steak will cook with olive oil. Place the steak on one half of the grill, and carefully place the onion slices on the other part of the grill. Cook the onions about 8-10 minutes, flipping once with a metal spatula, or until they have nice grill marks and are cooked through.
Grill the steak to medium-rare, about 7 minutes total, flipping once. Remove the onions to a cutting board and roughly chop. Remove the steak to a rimmed cutting board and let rest at least 5 minutes. When the steak has rested, thinly slice it against the grain with a very sharp knife. Try to slice it on an angle top to bottom as you’ll get thinner slices that way.
While the steak and onions are grilling, work on the pizza itself. Shape the 2 balls of dough into circles or rectangles and place on 2 greased baking sheets or pizza sheets. Parbake them for 6 minutes.
Remove from the oven and spread 1 cup of the marinara sauce on each pizza crust, leaving a 1-inch border all around. Divide the mozzarella slices between the 2 crusts, lining them in a single layer to cover as much of the sauce as possible. Return the pizzas to the oven for another 10-12 minutes, until the edges of the crusts are golden and the cheese is melted.
Let the pizzas rest about 5 minutes, then top each with half the onions and half the steak slices. Drizzle a little Worcestershire sauce over the steak on both pizzas, then sprinkle the romano shavings on each. Cut into slices and serve.
Oh, and P.S. – I had some steak sauce drizzled onto the hot pizza for a slice of my leftovers, and may I just say: YUM!!! Just FYI.

Salade-aux-Lardons Pizza

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This is one of my all-time favorite pizzas. And it’s so perfect to feature on my blog, because it truly illustrates how reformed my once-picky palate has become. Growing up, pizza was always in the “special treats”, or “indulgences” category. We didn’t have it all the time, by any stretch. So as you can imagine, when it was permitted, I wasn’t about to let any veggies get anywhere near my slices! The cheesier and meatier, the better.

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It wasn’t until my late twenties that I started to come around and realize that oh, vegetables on a pizza isn’t some horrific crime against humanity, and that it really can be quite tasty. Not that you’ll ever hear me complaining about the meat lovers variety, but I truly have come around to genuinely appreciate different pizza toppings.

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And now, as a mature adult, salad atop a pizza is honestly one of my favorite things on earth. If only that little kid in the buffet line at Cici’s Pizza, scowling at the mere presence of the veggie supreme pizzas, could see me now…

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So this pizza basically takes the most basic and classic of French salads, which is greens dressed with a mustard-based vinaigrette and sprinkled with crispy bacon, and deconstructs it into a pizza. Dijon mustard is spread on the dough, with Swiss cheese on top. Then crisped, bacon bits are scattered on top of the melty cheese and the greens are dressed simply with vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. When the pizza is cooked completely you take it out of the oven and toss the greens on top, then dive in immediately. (Hey, the French haven’t solved all the world’s problems – the greens will eventually wilt.)

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And you dig in. All those French flavors come together in each bite. And it’s so delicious. I hope y’all enjoy it.

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{One Year Ago: Glazed Donut Muffins}

Source: adapted from Fine Cooking Magazine, Issue June/July 2010

Ingredients:
1 lb. ball of pizza dough
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
8 oz. Jarlsberg, or Swiss cheese, grated
6 slices bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 medium shallot, sliced thin
4 cups baby arugula, or other light greens of your choice
1 tbs white wine vinegar
3 tbs olive oil
Kosher salt and black pepper

Directions:
Preheat your grill to medium-high heat. Oil the grate.
Roll out the pizza dough into a large rectangle that will still fit on your grill surface. Carefully transfer the dough to the hot grill and grill for about 4-5 minutes until the underside is getting some good grill marks. Carefully transfer the dough to a baking sheet, uncooked side down.
Spread the cooked side with the mustard, leaving a 1-inch border. Sprinkle the cheese on the mustard.
Transfer the pizza back onto the grill, uncooked side down. Close the lid and cook another 5-8 minutes, until the dough is cooked through and the cheese is melted.
While the dough is grilling, make the bacon bits. Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the bacon pieces and cook, stirring, until bacon is crispy and the fat has rendered. Remove with a slotted spoon to a paper towel lined plate.
Pour out all but 1 tbs of the bacon fat. Add the shallot to the remaining bacon fat in the skillet, over medium heat. Saute until softened, about 2-3 minutes. Set aside.
When ready to serve, remove the pizza from the grill and sprinkle the bacon pieces evenly over the top. Transfer the shallots to a large bowl. Add the vinegar and olive oil, then the arugula. Toss to combine, then immediately place the salad on top of the pizza. Cut into squares and serve right away.

Grilled Asparagus Panzanella

Grilled Asparagus Panzanella

Hey guys! I am continuing my week of ASPARAGUS recipes by guest posting over at the fabulous food blog Noshing with the Nolands! My friend Tara is on vacation and I am so honored to be taking over her blog for the day.

Tara asked me to make something for Spring, and this fits in with my asparagus week so perfectly; so I made this wonderful panzanella with grilled asparagus. (Click HERE for the recipe!)

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It was beyond delicious, y’all. Asparagus is in season and so gorgeous right now, and a lighter salad is so perfect if you’re one of the lucky few ushering in warmer weather. I’m not one of those people. Today’s high is 30 degrees Fahrenheit. I’m not bitter.

Anywho, be sure you click on over to Tara’s blog for this fabulous salad recipe! And be sure to check out the rest of Tara’s wonderful blog while you’re at it.

Grilled Asparagus Panzanella

{One year ago: Pickled Jalapenos}

Rosemary Skewered Chipotle Shrimp

Rosemary Skewered Chipotle Shrimp

Welcome to October! It’s finally *really* fall, it’s the time when I’m now allowed to cook with pumpkin (I don’t permit myself to use pumpkin before October 1), and it’s definitely apple and pear season.

marinating shrimp

So what’s happening? Indian summer! Of course. As I type this, I’m currently running the air conditioner in my office, I’m wearing a tank top, and it’s near sweltering outside. Good times! We are definitely grilling this weekend.

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rosemary shrimp skewers, before grilling

And with that, I thought a grilled shrimp skewer was appropriate for today. These are so cool. Instead of wooden skewers (which have to be soaked beforehand) or metal skewers (which get hotter than hell on the grill), these shrimp are skewered on rosemary branches. How awesome is that! It’s an all-natural skewer for the crunchy hippie in all of us, lol.

Chipotle Shrimp Skewers on the grill

I should warn you, these shrimp are very spicy. They do not mess around. That said, they are so flavorful, and we just love them. And, they can easily be adapted to an indoor grill setting, so you can eat them year-round! Enjoy!

Rosemary Skewered Chipotle Shrimp

{One year ago: Apple Hatch Chile Cobbler}

Source: slightly adapted from Fresh Mexico by Marcela Valladolid

Ingredients:
6-7 fresh rosemary sprigs (pick sturdy sprigs as much as possible)
¼ cup olive oil
1 ½ tbs fresh squeezed lime juice
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tbs chopped fresh cilantro
2 tsp chipotle chile powder
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 lb. raw medium shrimp, peeled but tails left intact, deveined
Lime wedges, for serving

Directions:
Preheat your grill to high.
Remove the leaves from about three-quarters of each rosemary sprig, and set the sprigs aside. Chop enough of the rosemary leaves to make 1 ½ teaspoons. Discard the rest or reserve it for another use.
Combine the olive oil, lime juice, garlic, cilantro, chipotle chile powder, and chopped rosemary in a medium bowl. Season the marinade with salt and black pepper to taste. Add the shrimp and toss until coated. Let stand for 5 minutes. Then skewer the shrimp onto the rosemary sprigs, 2-3 shrimp per sprig.
Transfer the skewers to the grill and cook for 1-2 minutes per side, until the shrimp are just cooked through. Transfer the skewers to a platter, garnish with lime wedges, and dig in.

Naan Bread

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I did NOT grow up eating Indian food, to say the least. In fact, I don’t think I could have named a traditional or popular Indian dish if a gun was held to my head. I was aware of the country India, and yes, I assumed they had food of course, but that’s about all the thought I gave to the issue. What can I say, Indian food just wasn’t a thing in Dallas suburbs in the ‘80’s.

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Since moving to New York, I have discovered Indian food, and have fallen in love. There’s an Indian take-out place in our neighborhood we frequent, we eat out at Indian restaurants from time to time, and I’ve started cooking it at home. And though I didn’t know naan bread from a hole in the wall growing up, now I simply cannot eat Indian food without it. It’s become one of my favorite things on earth.

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So when I made these delicious Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks a couple weeks ago, of course naan bread had to accompany them, and I decided to be brave and make it myself. I’m extremely comfortable baking with batters. I grew up occasionally helping my mom make her banana bread, and when I first got into cooking and baking, I definitely gravitated toward easy cakes and quick breads. Yeast breads? That’s another story.

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Those have come into my culinary repertoire much later. With practice I’m definitely feeling more and more like a boss of the yeast these days, but trust me, it didn’t start out that way. Oh, I have some screw-up stories. But this naan bread is not one of them. It turned out looking and tasting authentic and amazing. I was very proud.

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A few recipe notes: I don’t have a tandoor oven. (Shocking, I know.) A grill heated to very high will work just fine, indoor or outdoor. Don’t skip the brushing with butter part, or your naan won’t be as authentic. If you have leftovers, reheat them in the microwave. It sounds counterintuitive, but if you reheat them in the oven or on the grill, they dry out a little. The microwave will give you that soft texture that will be *almost* like fresh off the grill.

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Source: lightly adapted from Barbecue Addiction by Bobby Flay

Ingredients:
1 (1/4 oz.) packet active dry yeast
1 cup warm water
3 tbs sugar
3 tbs Greek yogurt
1 large egg, beaten
2 tsp kosher salt
4 to 4 ½ cups bread flour (sub in all-purpose if desired), plus more for dusting and kneading
Canola oil
8 tbs unsalted butter, melted

Directions:
Dissolve the yeast in the warm water in the bowl of your stand mixer for about 10 minutes, until frothy. Add the sugar, yogurt, egg, salt, and 4 cups bread flour. Mix together with the paddle attachment on medium-low speed, just until combined. Switch to the dough hook attachment and knead for 6 to 8 minutes. Put the dough in a well-oiled large bowl, cover with a damp kitchen towel, and set aside to rise for 1 hour, until the dough has doubled in volume.
Gently press down the dough and pinch off the dough into 8 even pieces. Roll those pieces into balls and place on a greased baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until doubled in size again, 30 to 60 minutes. (Recipe says 30 minutes, I let mine go closer to 1 hour).
Once the dough is ready, preheat your grill or grill pan to high (for direct grilling, if using an outdoor charcoal grill).
Roll out 1 ball of dough into a thin circle. If using an outdoor grill, lightly oil the grates. If using an indoor grill pan, this step isn’t necessary.
Brush the dough circle on one side with some melted butter. Put the dough on the grill surface buttered side down, and cook for 2-3 minutes, until puffy and lightly browned. While it’s grilling, brush the uncooked side with butter. Flip the bread and cook until browned another 2-3 minutes. Remove the bread from the grill and continue until all the naans have been grilled. Serve immediately for best results.

Italian Sausage Hoagies with Caprese Relish

Italian Sausage Hoagies with Caprese Relish

I think most of us would agree that sounding the death knell of summer needn’t necessarily mean the end of grilling for the season. It seems like most people will grill as long as the weather will allow. And if that’s year round for you, then I hate you! I kid. 🙂

cherry tomato skewers

grilling sausages and tomato skewers

NYC weather has definitely cooled down, but it’s going to be fine grilling temps for a couple more months (minus the rainy days, of course). So today I thought I would share this recipe with you, as it’s a terrific late summer/early fall dish, perfect for tailgating, or for one last day at the beach. I thought it was awesome! Kind of like a more upscale grilled hot dog, but just as easy to pull together. Enjoy the weekend! May you have great weather and delicious grilled grub!

caprese relish

grilled sausages and caprese relish

A few recipe notes: I enjoyed using a mix of sweet and hot Italian sausages, but of course use all of either if you prefer. Bocconcini are little bite-size balls of fresh mozzarella and most grocery stores have them these days. Look in the cheese section or near the deli. Make sure you get salted, plain and not marinated, as often they are sold marinated in various seasonings. If your store doesn’t have them, or they are jacked up in price, get a 1 lb. ball of fresh mozzarella and simply chop it into small bite-size chunks.

Italian Sausage Hoagies with Caprese Relish

Italian Sausage Hoagies with Caprese Relish

{One year ago: Blueberry Pancakes}

Source: slightly adapted from Barbecue Addiction by Bobby Flay

Ingredients:
¾ lb. sweet Italian sausage links
¾ lb. hot Italian sausage links
1 pint cherry tomatoes
Canola oil
Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper
1 pint bocconcini, each ball quartered
1 small red onion, diced
1 tbs brined capers, drained
¼ cup chopped fresh basil leaves
2 tbs chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
¼ cup red wine vinegar
¼ cup olive oil
6 soft hoagie rolls
2 garlic cloves, halved

Directions:
Heat your grill to high for direct grilling. Soak a few wooden skewers in water for half an hour.
Thread the tomatoes onto skewers. Prick the sausages all over with the tines of a fork. Brush the tomatoes with canola oil, then sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill the sausages until cooked through and lightly charred on both sides, about 5 minutes per side. Grill the tomato skewers until slightly charred and softened, about 2 minutes per side. Remove the sausages to a platter and let rest for 5 minutes. Remove the tomatoes from the skewers, cut in half, and put in a bowl.
To the bowl of tomatoes, add the mozzarella, onion, capers, basil, parsley, vinegar, and olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper toss to combine.
Slice open the rolls and put on the grill, cut side down. Grill until lightly golden brown, about 30 seconds. Remove the rolls and rub the cut surfaces with the garlic cloves.
To assemble, place a sausage link in a roll and top with caprese relish. Enjoy!