4th of July is here and that means it’s time to break out the charcoal and fire up your grill. Why not think outside of the traditional grilling box and stir things up a bit with ramped up sliders, grilled potato salad and even cocktails and dessert on the grill. This 4th of July Menu will make you look like the grilling rock star you really are!
- 2 lb. of ground round, enough for 10-12 sliders
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
- 4-6 oz. blue cheese, for the sliders
- Mini buns or rolls
Preheat grill to medium heat (about 350 degrees). Mix the meat with the olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Start with a small ball of meat, (about 1/4 cup or so) and flatten into a disc.
Put sliders on direct heat on and grill for three minutes each side. Once the slider has been flipped to the second side, add blue cheese to each one. After three minutes, check that the sliders have reached an internal temp of at least 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Cook the sliders according to the doneness you like your beef burgers- rare, medium, etc. Add buns to grill on the upper tray (gas) or on indirect heat for charcoal to slightly toast them.
Once the sliders have been taken off the grill, “tent” them in foil for 5 minutes so the juices have time to redistribute and make a super juicy burger!
Top with mayo, arugula and the Balsamic Red Onions that can be made beforehand.
Balsamic Red Onion Reduction
- One medium red onion, thinly sliced in “rings”
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 additional tbsp. olive oil for the balsamic onion
Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan, add the balsamic and then add the onions. Sautee until caramelized and wilted. Serve hot or cold on the burgers. These are super easy and are also great on pizzas and salads.
Grilled Red Pepper Potato Salad
July 4th weekend is here so don’t ruin your cookout with store-bought potato salad! While homemade potato salad can be a lot of work, this recipe will redeem the work put into it as it’s literally bursting with flavor and isn’t as high in calories as a traditional mayo based version. The grilled peppers and basil in this recipe add great visual pop to this dish that will play a starring role next to your burgers this weekend. This recipe will make you look like a rockstar and you don’t have to feel guilty about eating it!
Ingredients: (this will make enough for at least 8 servings)
- 5 lb bag red potatoes, rinsed
- 12 mini sweet red/orange/yellow peppers (3 larger bell peppers can be substituted if you can’t find mini sweet peppers)
- 1 bunch scallions
- sea salt, to taste
- fresh ground pepper, to taste
- 1 tbsp basil, chopped
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup
- 1/4 cup lightly packed parsley leaves
- 1/4 cup lightly packed basil leaves
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard3 cloves Garlic
Boil potatoes until they are tender enough to be pierced with a fork (about 20-30 minutes).
Meanwhile, preheat your grill to medium hight heat (350-400 degrees). Drain the potatoes and slice them in 1/4” pieces. Lightly coat them in olive oil. Grill the potatoes, peppers and scallions until nice charmarks form. There will be a lot of potatoes to grill so I suggest doing them in batches. I did the veggies first and then did the potatoes.
Next, combine all the dressing ingredients with an immersion blender or food processor.
Chop the potatoes into smaller pieces and put in a large bowl. Discard the stems and slice the peppers and scallions and put into the bowl.
Add the dressing to the potato/veggie mixture and stir until uniformly mixed. Add the chopped basil and generous sea salt and fresh ground pepper to taste. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Can also be served warm after it has been made.
**(recipe courtesy of Marcus Wang, senior scientist for Kingsford Charcoal)
makes one 64 oz pitcher
- 6 pounds lemons, cut in half
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup honey
- 2 rosemary sprigs (optional)1 cup Four Roses Bourbon (or bourbon of your choice)
1) Dip each half of the cut lemons in sugar and set aside on a tray to be grilled.
2) Combine water, sugar and honey in a saucepan or disposable aluminum tray. Add a couple of sprigs of rosemary to the pan (this is optional but adds a unique touch!)
3) Heat up your grill to medium-high heat. For additional rosemary flavor, throw a handful of rosemary sprigs on the hot coals just before grilling.
4) Grill the lemons cut-side down until nice grill marks appear (5-7 minutes). Remove the lemons and set aside to cool.
5) While grilling the lemons, place the saucepan with the honey syrup on the grill. Heat the syrup until sugar and honey are fully dissolved giving the rosemary time to infuse the syrup with flavor.
6) Let the lemons cool then squeeze the juice into a pitcher by hand. Add syrup and water to taste, along with bourbon and ice. Stir well and serve.
Grilled Pound Cake is a quick and easy way to make dessert on the grill without a lot of fuss. Pair with peaches or any seasonal fruit and your friends will think you are a rock star! Publix is currently selling Italian gelato so I paired this with sea salt caramel gelato and my husband was literally licking his plate afterwards! Grilled fruit caramelizes and becomes extra juicy and is perfect paired with icecream.
Grill pound cake slices and pineapple rings on medium direct heat (about 350 degrees) until char marks form, being careful not to burn the pound cake. For a very hot grill, use indirect heat so as not to burn the cake.
Serve with ice cream or gelato!