It’s dreary outside today and I’m dreaming of sunnier days. That led me to think about what I did in summer, and that led to summer BBQs. I have a whole whack of photos from a particular crazy weekend of eating. Why was it a crazy weekend? Well, my friends and I held another BBQ/hotpot/sleepover, which meant a straight 18 hours or so of eating. The next day I had brunch at a friend’s and it was my birthday potluck. Needless to say, all I did was eat (and snap a few photos between bites.)
On the menu for the BBQ: strawberry citrus salad, veggie skewers, burgers, hummus and chips, sangria, and wings (I probably missed an item or two.)
Simple Veggie Skewers
- peppers, sliced
- zucchini, sliced
- mushrooms, halved
- Montreal steak spice
Take whatever veggies you fancy and toss them with some steak spice. Thread them onto some skewers and toss on the grill until cooked through. Easy and delicious!
Strawberry citrus salad.
I love summer. Living in Canada means that we get very few months of hot weather; generally it’s 10 months of winter and then 2 months of construction. But nevertheless, we DO get some nice days, and I try to take advantage of it. This means grilling and BBQ-ing and chilling outside by a pool. Lucky for me, plenty of my friends are up for this. One of my friends, Jordan, has a pool at her parent’s place, and we spent an afternoon hanging out and making lunch. On the menu included a pear and candied pecan salad, lamb burgers, and apple crisp.
- 1 lb ground lamb
- half an onion (we used red, but I’ve also done it with white), diced
- several cloves of garlic, minced (I don’t remember how many I used, but I love garlic, so a liberal amount)
- salt and pepper
- ground coriander
- 1 egg
Take all the ingredients and mix well. You can adjust the seasonings to your taste; we found that lamb really takes spice well and we could really tasted the cumin-it was delicious! We just eyed it and threw in what we had on hand. Form the lamb into 4 patties. We grilled them on the BBQ and didn’t even have to garnish them with anything, they were so tasty. I did this again a week later and didn’t have coriander, but that was fine. I just used cumin, and it tasted fabulous!
I hope everyone is enjoying summer as much as I am!
Here are a couple more recipes to try if you’re throwing a summer party: pasta salad and mango salsa (although it does go great with chips, most of us were eating it as a salad, it’s so tasty on its own).
- one red pepper, diced
- one green pepper, diced
- 450 grams penne pasta, cooked and drained
- one bag of Hellmans ancho chipotle sauce
Toss everything together!
- 4 mangoes, diced
- 1 mango, pureed
- half a red onion, diced
- one lime, zested and juiced
- mint leaves, chopped
- 1 tablespoon of honey (or to taste)
The next day we had breakfast on the patio because it was such a gorgeous morning. We BBQ’d our breakfast and had sausages and bacon. Just be careful when you do this and have a spray bottle with water nearby because the fat WILL make the flames shoot up, and the flames had to be doused every so often so our breakfast didn’t burn. The bacon and sausages definitely tasted better grilled on the BBQ rather than cooked on the stove top. Take advantage of summer weather and get out there and use your grill!
The fun continued for me on the weekend with a BBQ-sleepover with a bunch of friends. I feel like every time we get together to do this, our gatherings get more and more epic, food-wise (not that I’m complaining). The menu was quite extensive, and almost everything was homemade! I’ll have to split the post for recipes as I haven’t gathered everyone’s contributions yet, but here’s what we ate: burgers, wings, roasted veggies, pasta salad, Caesar salad, mango salsa, salmon sashimi, shrimp and veggie skewers, and strawberry citrus salad. For dessert there was mint chocolate chip ice cream (PC brand-it’s the best for mint chocolate chip ice cream!) and homemade chocolate chip cookies. There was so much food, we got to have a late night feast at about three in the morning (where we promptly ate up a lot of the leftovers). So much fun!
The following recipes were provided to me by Abby.
Caesar Salad Dressing
- 2 g Dijon mustard
- 150 ml lemon juice
- 1 tsp salt
- 5 eggs
- 30 g anchovy paste
- 5 tsp capers, chopped
- 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 10 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 litre olive or canola oil
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 100 g Parmesan Cheese (optional)
*This recipe makes 1.5 L of dressing, so make sure to adjust it to what you need.
Whisk mustard, lemon juice, salt, eggs, anchovy paste, capers, Worcestershire sauce, and garlic until frothy. Slowly drizzle in the oil while whisking. Once the emulsion forms, add remaining oil in a steady stream. Add remaining ingredients and adjust seasoning. Store in a noncorrosive container in the fridge and use within 3-4 days.
Strawberry Citrus Salad
- 3 cups hulled strawberries, sliced
- 3 large navel oranges, peeled, thickly sliced crosswise, cut into 3/4 inch pieces
- 2 tbsp of packed golden brown sugar
- 2 tsp fresh mint leaves, thinly sliced
Toss all ingredients into a large bowl. Let stand at room temp for 30 minutes.
This strawberry citrus salad is one of my favourite summer salads. For some reason, people were not eating very much of it and I think I ended up devouring about a third to a half of it!