The best part about Spring, is being able to enjoy nice weather and beautiful flowers (to name a few good things 😀 ). Along with enjoying nice weather, comes grilling and eating outside 😀 This past weekend Adam decided to put together a lovely Spring BBQ Inspired meal for his father’s birthday. I assisted with making a Watermelon Sangria and an Herby Potato Salad. The rest was courtesy of Adam and his mom.
Herby Potato Salad (Simple but Perfect Salads Cookbook P. 189)
Coleslaw (From Safeway, it was okay. I probably would not buy it again)
Corn on the cob
Grilled Pineapple Slices
-For my dry white wine, I decided to use “Vihno Verde” which is a nice light fizzy white wine. I found it at Trader Joe’s.
-Since I was too lazy to walk down to Giant to buy white cranberry juice I decided to buy Trader Joe’s Sparkling Pomegranate Flavored Juice. I thought it would add a nice reddish color to the drink along with a nice flavor (I am kicking myself for not having bought pomegranate seeds to add to the drink!)
-The recipe called for Watermelon Schapps but all I could find was Watermelon Pucker. I didn’t like adding the Watermelon Pucker… it gave it too much of a candy flavor and I just didn’t care for it.
-After mixing everything together I found that the sangria was way too sour for my taste so I made a little bit of honey syrup (3 tablespoons of honey in ¼ of water. I brought that to a boil to melt the honey. I then slowly added it to the sangria while mixing as I poured in order to not burn whatever was floating at the top of the jug).
-Garnish with a sprig of mint
Herby Potato Salad P. 189
– I used baby red potatoes and I didn’t add salt or pepper. I boiled the baby red potatoes for about 30 minutes. I kept checking them every 8 minutes or so past the 15 minute allotted cook time in the recipe book.
Corn on the cob
– Adam made the corn straight from the package (what I mean by that is that he didn’t pre-soak the corn). The corn was purchased from Giant in Springfield. Adam carefully separated the husks from the corn and removed any of the hairs so that he could coat it with olive oil and sprinkle it with cumin, garlic salt and cayenne pepper. He then put back the husks (see photo below) and placed it directly on the grill for about 20 minutes (5 minutes per side) on medium. Check to make sure the corn doesn’t catch fire please 🙂
-Adam used two pineapples which he cut up in rings thanks to this handy dandy tool my in-laws have. I don’t know where they got it but it allows you to easily make pineapple rings with no fuss or muss. Whenever I get my hands on this tool, I will have to write a post because it is way TOO COOL!
Adam then sprinkled brown sugar and shredded coconut (from Whole Foods Springfield) on the pineapple after he put the pineapple rings on the grill. He grilled them for about 10 minutes (5 per side) on medium.
This is Adam’s write up because he prepared the pulled chicken the day before while I way away photographing a wedding.
“The key ingredient is the barbeque sauce. Depending on which barbeque sauce you use will determine how the recipe is modified and your flavor preference. I used the Trader Joe’s barbeque sauce. Out of the bottle, it has a strong smokey flavor and a bit of a kick/spicy. If that is your liking, then great. I like the flavor, but it needs some sweetening. So, I added some honey and apple juice. The first time I made this recipe, the honey did just fine, but when I made it for my Dad’s Birthday, it kind of all globed together at the bottom. I would recommend just sticking to brown sugar, unless you wanted to put a little bit of honey on the top. I probably sampled more than a 1/4 cup of BBQ sauce until I found the right flavor profile.
When I heated it up for the actual meal, I used a little bit of honey, apple juice and really light on the BBQ sauce, since I made it the day before. I also recommend making it the day before since it really allows the flavors to sink in.
If you choose to use apple juice as a sweetener, this will thin the BBQ sauce out, which is fine for the cooking part, but not for the serving part. You’ll need to add extra corn starch to thicken up the sauce. It is a recipe that you really need to play around with.
If I was going to make it again, I would just use brown sugar, some apple juice, and put some honey on top of the chicken when it is put in the crock pot.
The other modification I used was chicken thighs instead of breasts. I think thighs have a better flavor for BBQ than breast, but again personal preference.
Lastly, I used Ken’s Lite Italian dressing for the dressing part and I went light with it.
You really need to follow the cook times too. I would say don’t go more than 4.5 hrs on the cook time. If you do, the chicken gets too soft and that isn’t what you want for BBQ.”
Finally, toast hamburger buns on the grill and serve the pulled chicken on top 😀
Enjoy! It is a GORGEOUS weekend in Washington D.C. to grill out!
My cat was very interested in all the commotion I was creating while photographing the watermelon balls 😀
Stealth says, “What are you doing down there????”