It’s a known fact: if you want to be the king of your neighborhood, host a barbecue. People will flock to your backyard and enjoy every second of it, that is if you host it right. Barbecues are the staple of every summer, and there’s nothing quite like biting into a delicious burger on the 4th of July (or just about any other day of the year). You probably already have some pretty cool tricks up your sleeve when it comes to throwing an awesome barbecue. To take your barbecue to the next level, check out these suggestions.
Buy a Heater
If you want to keep your barbecue party going all night long, you need to have a way to keep people warm when night comes around. Investing in a couple of gas patio heaters from Advanced Systems Heaters will make sure that all your guests are warm and enjoying their time at your barbecue. Make sure they’re strategically placed around your yard so people don’t have to huddle together to stay warm and can spread out a little bit. There are some heaters that sit right on top of tables, so choosing one of those in addition to the larger standup heaters could be a good idea. There are a lot of different gas patio heater models out there, so find one that fits with the design of your backyard and enjoy warmer nights at all of your barbecues!
Theme Your BBQ
This might seem like a weird suggestion at first, but your guests are guaranteed to love it. Rather than just a traditional afternoon summer barbecue, opt for something more…interesting. Maybe you want to host a super hero barbecue, or a safari barbecue. Try and make every aspect of your barbecue party follow the theme, including the dinners. Opt for some different kinds of sides as opposed to traditional barbecue grub like potato salad or macaroni salad. Or throw some crazy kicks into those traditional recipes to go along with your theme. Your guests will enjoy themselves and it will make for some interesting conversation.
Opt to Try Some New Meats
Sure hamburgers and hotdogs are the staple of any good barbecue, but if you really want to take it to the next level you should offer your guests something more. Think outside the box. Go for some delicious briskets or some sizzling hot links that will have all of your guest’s satisfied. Whatever you decide to grill, make sure you start marinating early. The earlier is better, and if you can start marinating 24 hours early then you should because it will make your meat that much better. Make sure you have some vegetarian options in case anyone doesn’t eat meat, too!
Have Fun Games
Try and add some games to your barbecue. Standing around, talking, and drinking beers is great, but adding in some games will keep people entertained. Beanbag toss is a traditional one, but don’t limit it to that. Be sure to keep a football out there too in case the crew wants to spontaneously play a game!
The world famous Texas BBQ legend “The Salt Lick” is publishing a cookbook just in time for Christmas, in late November. They are already accepting pre-orders.
Fans of the legendary barbecue restaurant The Salt Lick (which has national notoriety, thanks to food shipments and national TV and print coverage) will be able to experience its classic recipes at home and learn about the history of the celebrated Texas institution in the upcoming publication of The Salt Lick Cookbook: A Story of Land, Family, and Love by owner and pit master Scott Roberts and Jessica Dupuy.
BBQ lovers likely know of The Salt Lick, as its been featured on The Food Network, The Travel Channel, and The Today Show, as well as in the New York Times, Everyday With Rachael Ray, USA Today and Food & Wine, among others. In addition, owner and author Scott Roberts was a featured judge on Bravo Network’s recent series Top Chef: Texas.
The book is more than a collection of barbecue fare made famous by the restaurant as it contains an array of closely guarded family recipes that until now have never been shared. It is a story of over four generations of the Roberts clan, their love of each other, and the food that brought them together over the years. For The Salt Lick Cookbook, Roberts painstakingly chose the best family recipes and the stories behind them to share with the world, from his grandmother Roxieâ??s biscuits to his mother Hisakoâ??s catfish and hush puppies. These Roberts family’??s recipes are steeped in tradition and have provided the foundation for the barbecue restaurant, located in Driftwood, which has evolved into a great Texas landmark that attracts visitors from across the globe
I’m no Master of the Pit, but I know my way around a barbecue grill. In addition to the usual burgers and dogs, I can grill a mean porterhouse, rub a rack of ribs, or even beer-can a chicken with the best of them. I learned how to grill from my grandfather, who improvised a lot and never actually prepared any dish the same twice. Any time I’d ask him to write down a recipe or just provide specifics, he’d just take a drag on his Pall Mall and tell me, “We’re grilling steaks, not baking cookies.”
So, is it really cheating to use a recipe for barbecuing? My friends are divided on the issue. Some maintain that cooking by rote or recipe is totally acceptable, while others insist it’s akin to painting by numbers and calling it art. Since I never acquired my grandfather’s talent for spontaneity, I tend to favor the recipe approach. For me, it’s all about repeatable process. My wife Anne loves my beer can chicken, but she knows it’s going to taste the same as it did last time, and the time before.
A couple of weeks ago, Anne downloaded a free ebook of BBQ Recipes from the American Family website. For someone like me, who can’t cook without a crib sheet, this book is a godsend! It’s got over 40 recipes, ranging from the basic (grilled steak, grilled vegetables) to the complicated (Caribbean grilled scallop salad, grilled quail with white polenta). There are awesome (and easy) recipes for grilled stuffed peppers and grilled corn on the cob, and even a recipe for grilled BLT pizza.
The recipes, even the more complex ones, are presented on a single page each, with serving size, ingredients, and instructions for preparation. Each entry also includes nutritional information, for those of you who may be grilling to eat healthy.
Thanks to this book, I’m well on my way to adding a few more grilled dishes to my repertoire. I used the grilled sausages recipe to fire up some brats for the in-laws last weekend, and Anne has asked me to grill another batch of stuffed peppers for her Keno game next week. She’s also taken an interest in grilling, and says she’s tempted to take a stab at the Grilled Peaches Jezebel (peaches with honey, horseradish, and Dijon mustard, in case you’re wondering).
If you’re interested, the BBQ Recipes book can be downloaded at
http://www.americanfamily.com/lp/SciOpsBBQ/download.html. American Family—a part of Synapse Group, Inc.—is one of those websites where they pay you to play games, collect recipes, clip coupons, and take quizzes. Unless you’re already a member, you’ll have to sign up before you can download the book, but it’s totally free!
Lobster is a truly decadent meal that is deceptively simple to prepare on a grill. Impress your friends with a gourmet meal that takes less than half an hour from lighting the grill to dinnertime.
Start with at least one high-quality lobster tail per guest. The only other ingredients you need are a stick of butter, a clove of garlic, lemon juice and salt and pepper. Place the tails in a waterproof bag and soak in a bowl of warm water to thaw if you purchased them frozen. If you have a charcoal grill, light the coals to get an even heat going while prepping the tails.
Use a microwave or stovetop to melt the butter. Mince or finely chop the clove of garlic and add to the butter. Finally, juice the lemon and add lemon juice, salt and pepper to the melted butter. You can substitute bottled lemon juice in a pinch, but fresh squeezed juice gives a better flavor.
Use a sharp knife or kitchen shears to cut the tails down the center to the tail fan. You can choose to either place the tails on the grill alone, or skewer them. Skewering helps keep the tails flat during the cooking process, which looks nicer for presentation. If you use wooden skewers be sure to soak them in water first.
Completely cover the tails with the basting mixture before placing them on the grill. Oiling the grate prior to placing the tails helps keep the meat from sticking to the hot metal. Place the tails cut-side down on the grill, being careful to avoid flare-ups from dripping butter. Allow the tails to cook for four to five minutes, or until you begin to see grill marks on the meat. Flip them over and baste frequently for the next three to six minutes. When the lobster meat becomes firm and opaque it’s ready for the table. Consider serving lobster tails with steamed vegetables and fresh bread for a simple but impressive meal.
Lobster tails can also be great food gifts. They are an easy-to-make special treat for the college student, new parents or good friend in your life. Pair them with a high-quality steak and prepare to wow with a Surf and Turf combination that can’t be beat.
Featured on Good Morning America in Fall of 2011 and personally endorsed by Iron Chef, Michael Symon, Pig of the Month is an online retailer specializing in world famous barbecue and sides – all one click away from your dinner table. With a smoking technique that was perfected over decades, the company ships homemade, all natural BBQ products ranging from a variety of meats, sides, and sauces straight to your door – all ready to be served within 30-minutes of arrival.
Established in 2010 by Lea Richards after leaving her high stress job in finance, Ohio based Pig of the Month BBQ is the product of a beloved family tradition and the result of one family’s insanely wild goose chase throughout the U.S. for the best barbecue. Until the realization hit that they didn’t have to go anywhere for the best barbecue… The Pig of the Month team has all the experience, tips, and recipes from around the country to make the best barbecue in the country right in their house, and now offer customers the chance to eat it in theirs.
Perfect for the Super Bowl, holidays, special occasions or just the craving of amazing barbecue, Pig of the Month brings barbecue straight to your door without a trip to the store, hours of cooking or a mess to clean up in the kitchen.
Bring on the bacon flavored products. This time it’s croutons. Perfect!
I recently got a chance to try these out and they are good. Not overwhelming bacon taste, but it’s there, just the right amount. The croutons are nice and big, crunchy. Not some little runt croutons.
I bet they’d make good breadcrumbs for baking chicken in….
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