Make your own. That's my motto, usually. The deli counter is full of prepared salads and while it's certainly easier to just buy some side salads to go with your summer meal, it's much more satisfying (and cost effective) to prepare it at home.I don't use feta cheese much, but its saltiness goes nicely with the mild cucumbers and tomatoes.
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The best flank steak I ever had was prepared by a co-worker some years ago and featured a Korean-style marinade for which he refused to divulge the full list of ingredients. I've never fully tried to replicate it for fear of complete failure, but I still love marinated flank steak. This one is done in an Asian style soy-based marinade, seared over direct heat, then finished off the heat.
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I'm an idiot.
It's that simple. I fully intended to post this baby back ribs recipe and take some nice pictures to go along with it but in the rush of my father's day gathering, I simply forgot. And by the time I remembered those two lonely stalks you see above were all that remained of four gorgeous racks of ribs. I'll update the photo next time I make them... Of course, now I have an excuse.
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There are some quality prepared barbecue sauce products on the market these days (Stubbs is a brand I recommend) but, nonetheless, I prefer to make my own. This recipe was modified from the Kansas City Ribs recipe in
Weber's Big Book of Grilling. I cut back on the ketchup and added some roasted peppers and a bit more onion.
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I use roasted peppers in a lot of my recipes. Many times I'll replace tomatoes in a recipe with roasted peppers, or use them to add sweetness to a dish. Normally I stick with Red, Yellow, and Orange Bell Peppers, but the method described below works well for any type of pepper. If you're roasting peppers with thinner flesh, be sure to watch them carefully or they'll roast away to nothingness.
My Texas Style Chili, Salsa, and Barbecue Sauce all make heavy use of roasted peppers so instead of describing the method in each of those recipes I figured I'd make a separate post. They're also great on an antipasto plate with a little roasted garlic mixed in.
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I really dislike canned / jarred salsa. The texture is often too pasty and there's zero freshness when all that really matters in good salsa is fresh ingredients. I like to balance mine with a bit of sweetness. Sometimes I'll use fruit (mango, for example) and sometimes I'll use roasted peppers. Roasting your own peppers takes a little more time, but it makes the dish.
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My youngest son said he wanted brownies for his birthday.
The only problem was that we'd already booked a party with loads of dinosaurs and, well, ice cream. Admittedly, we went a little over-board on this one. His actual birthday is in the middle of July - after school has let out for the summer and smack in the middle of our summer beach rental. So while his brother has been having parties with all his school friends in the middle of winter, he's had to make do with a couple beach friends and a cup cake. We knew he'd catch on eventually, and this year he did.
So we threw him his first "real" birthday party and despite the fact that we had vanilla ice cream on order, he wanted brownies.
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Part of my Father's Day gift is I get to stay home and cook for my extended family. It seems like an odd gift, I know, but if you understand why I cook then you'll get it. Anyway, I've been considering the menu for about a week now and, barring any last-minute grocery store mishaps, here's what I have planned so far:
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