We love the freshness and abundance of July produce, but finding creative uses for all those veggies can feel daunting sometimes. While large tossed salads are a great go-to, you don’t always have lots of lettuce on hand (and, face it: we can eat only so many salads), and that’s where pizza steps in.
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This time of year, it’s tempting to rush into grilling, throwing whatever ingredients you’ve got onto the hot grates with abandon. We know you can’t wait to dine alfresco, but it’s worth taking a moment to remind yourself of the basics — especially when it comes to kebabs. These crowd-pleasing meals on a stick are a big part of many a griller’s regular rotation. Here’s how to get them right every time.
1. Don’t forget to soak those skewers!
If you’re using wooden skewers instead of metal ones, dunk them in water for at least 20 minutes before you start grilling. This minimizes the chance that they’ll catch on fire.
Finishing off a burger with a good slice of cheese in the final moments on the grill works, but hold it right there. These totally stuffed burgers prove that burgers are good to their very core when they’re stuffed to the gills with cheese, bacon and more.
Sunny Anderson’s Bacon-, Onion- and Cheese-Stuffed Burger (pictured above) may sound like a mouthful, but these burgers take just 35 minutes to reach your plate. Each smoky-meets-savory patty is fixed up with a mixture of bacon, onion and grated sharp cheddar for max flavor.
Cookout season is here, and no backyard barbecue is complete without a fruity dessert. We love to use fresh produce in simple, crowd-pleasing pies and cobblers. Mix and match berries and stone fruits for an unexpected twist, or just stick to pure one-fruit flavors. Try one of these recipes for a grand finale at your next backyard party.
Strawberry Crumble Pie (pictured above)
Use this year’s strawberry haul in this Food Network Magazine recipe. Tossing the strawberries with lime juice and cardamom gives this pie a little extra oomph of flavor.
It’s July. It’s steamy. You’re likely sweating. And yet tonight’s dinner still has to be made. Instead of cranking on the stove and making your kitchen and home only more sweltering, skip the range altogether and opt for a stove-free supper. On this morning’s all-new episode of The Kitchen, the co-hosts showed off new ways to enjoy a Stove-Free Summer, including one machine that will save the day come dinnertime: the slow cooker. Thanks to this do-the-work-for-you device, you can set and forget many of the same items you’d otherwise watch over on the stove. And best of all, it doesn’t heat up your kitchen. Check out two ways to prep mussels right in the slow cooker for simple weeknight cooking.
If you’ve ever organized a road trip, then you know how tricky it is to locate desirable dining options on particularly remote stretches of road. And if your travel companions are picky eaters, it makes the challenge all the more impossible come mealtime. Snacking in the car may not seem like the most-glamorous way to experience the open road, but it’s often our most-reliable (and most-affordable) option. Perhaps you’re worried about turning your vehicle into a greasy spoon on wheels — a valid concern, especially if you’re traveling with kids. Do your co-pilots a favor and avoiding packing foods that tend to be oily, crumbly or pungent. You’ll keep your car clean and your spirits high. Not sure what dishes fit the mold? Here are a few suggestions.
As long as you have an insulated cooler bag or some other reliable source of refrigeration on your journey, there are no holds barred on pasta salad. We recommend something light and bright, with minimal dressing, or else you’ll be chomping on wilted, soggy greens. Rachael Ray’s wholesome Spinach-Artichoke Pasta Salad would definitely do the trick, as would this hearty Tomato-Feta Pasta Salad.
Sipping lemonade on the porch (bonus points if you’ve got a swing) isn’t a symbol of summer for nothing. And you’ll never be too far from your next pitcher when you’ve got a recipe roster like this at the ready.
Perfect Homemade Lemonade (above)
Before you get fancy, make sure you’ve nailed the basics. Ree Drummond’s quintessential recipe makes a giant batch, perfect for filling a party-sized dispenser.
By Angela Carlos
Summer has officially arrived on the Chopped Junior set. This week contestants unpacked their summer-themed baskets filled with fresh eggplant, watermelon gelatin and beach-ball cake pops. The challenge, as always, was how to make something tasty out of so many incongruent items.
You wouldn’t necessarily believe that “smaller is better” when it comes to summer fruit pies — but leave it to the reliably adorable Mason jar to convince you. While you might cast aside the metal lids in favor of sipping lemonade Pinterest style, they’re actually the perfect vessels for baking mini pies. Our recipe has blueberries and peaches — absolutely delicious topped with a melty scoop of ice cream. Good thing you can easily claim a portion that’s all yours.
For a lot of us, a mountain of potato salad is a given at any cookout we’re throwing. Though a lot of deli-counter potato salads may be seriously boring (and really off on the potato-to-mayo ratio too), that’s far from the case here. Never gloopy, these new-age picks — each with its own flavor-boosting edge — deserve a spot on your cookout menu, starting now.
Kick It Up
Bobby Flay’s Southwestern Potato Salad (pictured above) boasts all the creaminess of your classic potato salad, plus a kick of heat from chipotle pepper puree and cayenne. Do it up with fresh lime juice, chopped cilantro and onion for your zestiest potato salad yet.