June 2019 Class
Are you ready for summer? Well this menu will definitely get you in the mood! This is my take on a few classic summertime recipes. Just by saying their names, I envision a beautiful red, white, and blue summer day. I love having a group of friends over on a hot day. We fire up the grill, get a cool beverage, and get ready for fun. These recipes are perfect for entertaining. They are delicious and they come together quickly and easily. They focus on the beautiful summer time fruits and vegetables. As always, we have a big make-ahead component so that they are made way before your family and friends arrive so you can be out there celebrating.
So, what are we cooking?
Pimento Cheese Spread with Crostini:
This is a spicy, cheesy concoction that every southern girl has in her recipe repertoire as a “go to” appetizer. It’s the signature dish at the Master’s Golf Tournament and I’m sure it is soon to be a staple at your house! This is my version. Make sure you start with a really good sharp cheddar. I like to use Tillamook cheese from Oregon because it has only four ingredients in it and when you use really good ingredients, they shine, and that’s what really matters. The spread is insanely addictive and pairs so wonderfully with crostini, pita chips, or crackers or you can feel a little healthy serving it with crudités. I love it because it can be made up to a week ahead. Just pull it out about an hour before serving, because cheese is best enjoyed at room temperature, and spread it on your crostini. That cheesy goodness, that slight kick of cayenne pepper at the end that catches you by surprise, will have you going back for more.
Tri-Color Bleu Cheese Coleslaw:
This is going to be your go to summer salad! If you like coleslaw, but don’t like ones that are heavy on the mayo, then this is for you. The crunchy, shredded, red and green cabbage and sweet grated carrots are tossed together with a tangy, but light, creamy dressing. Then there is the explosion of bleu cheese that sneaks in there hidden in all the slaw-y goodness, finally topped with the crunch of toasted walnuts. It’s a party in your mouth! It is a stunning accompaniment to other grilled items like burgers, ribs, and all things summer.
The Best Dang BBQ Chicken:
This is my take on a barbecue sauce. It’s tangy, but not too sweet, with just a touch of heat as it finishes. It is the bomb! It tastes like it’s complicated and has been simmering for hours, but comes together very quickly and can last in your fridge for weeks. It’s super on chicken, but equally good on pork or beef. Our BBQ chicken is a 2-step process. We first grill the chicken to add that nice smoky flavor to the meat, also rendering out the fat and making the skin crispy and beautifully caramelized. The second step is to slather it with our BBQ sauce. If we did that and continued cooking it on the grill, the sauce will burn into a flaming mess. So, we will finish cooking it in the oven. It’s the best of both worlds with its smoky flavor from the grill, but the barbecue sauce is not burnt. Also, the chicken is perfectly moist and juicy. It’s sure to be a summer hit!
Raspberry & Peach Shortcake:
This shortcake is kind of a cousin to a biscuit and a scone. The “short” is in reference to the flatness, or shortness in height, and that it is crispier than a biscuit and not as crumbly as a scone due to all the gorgeous butter and cream! Once you taste them, you are going to want to make them a part of your family. They come together quickly in one bowl, then are cut into circles. I top them with Swedish pearl sugar before baking. It makes them look very elegant and like you have sprinkled them with magic snow. The magic is that the sugar doesn’t melt in the oven, but instead leaves a beautiful coating on top. This sugar is available at www.kingarthur.com. We then fill the cakes with raspberries and peaches that have been soaked in Amaretto liqueur, finished with a dollop of sweetened whipped cream, sending it over the moon. It’s an absolutely fabulous way to end your summer meal.