Summer Eating & Grilling – What’s your favorite?

A repeat post from last year, but it’s about time. I’m adding a video from a favorite YouTuber.

To start out, Glen’s take on backyard barbecue potato salad. There are lots of variations of potato salad; my mother marinated her cooked potatoes in pickle juice (think bread & butter) before finishing hers:

To be honest, I’m not much of a griller these days, but I do like grill-type food in the summer, with lots of fruits and vegetables. These are a couple of things that I fix.

I really love bison/buffalo burgers. Honestly, I usually just season with salt and pepper and pan fry them, and I like them a little pink. Bison is mostly grass fed and pretty lean, so it can be dry if cooked too well done. I don’t eat them on a bun, but as a main protein accompanied by other things like sauteed mushrooms, green veggies or salad, and a baked potato.

I do mushrooms two different ways that are fairly similar. Slice 1/2 pound of mushrooms and cook them with scallions in olive oil (I like it better than butter in this case) until mostly cooked through (did you know that you can’t overcook mushrooms; see video below), add about 1/4 to 1/3 cup of either dry white or red wine and about a tablespoon of Dijon mustard. Cook down to reduce the liquid and alcohol. If I’m adding white wine, I splash in some heavy cream and cook down to a sauce consistency.

Another grill-type food I do is St. Louis style pork ribs. I usually buy mine in a 3-rack Swift Premium package from Costco, cooking one right away, and freezing the other two for later. The 3-rack package is about ten pounds. I remove any silver skin, and cut the ribs into serving size pieces (1 to 3 ribs), rub them all over with lemon juice, then coat them with a dry rub that I make. This is just about the right amount for a rack of St. Louis style ribs:

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder (not powdered chili)
  • 2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves (not ground oregano)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper

You could spice this up a bit, if you wanted to, with a little cayenne or other dried chile.

Put the ribs meat-side down in a large baking pan (I use an old lasagna pan, which holds them snugly) and cover tightly with aluminum foil. Bake in a 300 degree oven for two hours, or until the meat is tender. I have also done this part of the cooking in a crock pot, but I honestly don’t remember how long I cooked them.

Drain the liquid from the pan, but don’t throw it away immediately, as you can mix some of the liquid with thick barbecue sauce to make a thinner glaze. At this point, you can finish the ribs either in a very hot oven/broiler, or on your gas or charcoal grill. Glaze the ribs and grill on one side, then turn and glaze again. Watch that they don’t burn, but turn and glaze until they are finished the way that YOU like them! I don’t usually make my own barbecue sauce, but here is a recipe to try. This is not spicy:

  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup onion, finely diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons molasses
  • 2 Tablespoons spicy mustard (like Guldens’ Spicy Brown Mustard)
  • 1 Tablespoon Worcestershire Sauce
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder (NOT powdered chili pepper)


  1. Heat oil in a saucepan over medium-high heat and sauté onion & garlic for 2 minutes until golden brown.
  2. Add everything else and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, for about 25 minutes. Sauce will thicken as it cools.

I love steak, and I like it rare. Any kind will do, but I’m partial to Ribeye. Grilling is great, but I also like a steak cooked in a hot cast iron skillet, and simply seasoned with salt and pepper.

My favorite sides? Simple vegetables and salads – and potatoes. I love fresh sweet corn, any kind of salad, and green vegetables prepared very simply. A good salad to try is a Caprese salad:

  • Sliced tomato fresh from your garden or farmer’s market
  • Thinly sliced red onion
  • Fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • Fresh basil leaves

Layer ingredients on a plate, and dress very simply with good olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper.

I know that some of you have really good recipes to share, so let’s hear about them (even if you have shared them before.)

Now is the season for really great produce and what is better, really?

Now, here is that video about mushrooms that I was talking about:


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24 Responses to Summer Eating & Grilling – What’s your favorite?

  1. JTR says:

    We have a fig shrubbery that is taller than the house! I think the birds beat us to many of them, but we get plenty. My favorite way to eat them is to grill them, cut in half, on a hot grill. Start cut side down. When you have grill marks, flip them over and put a bit of goat cheese on top. Let it melt a bit. Take them off of the grill and drizzle a bit of balsamic glaze on them, and there you go!

    Liked by 4 people

  2. stella says:

    I made a spring veg mix with a buerre blanc sauce. It’s good, and I learned to like turnips. Vegs are turnips, asparagus, snap peas and radish slices.

    Liked by 1 person

    • JTR says:

      We eat turnips the old Scottish way. just boil ’til tender, drain, mash with butter and a bit of cream. They call them “Neeps”!


      • stella says:

        I had not eaten turnips since I was a kid. I hated it at the time (maybe it was old?) and haven’t eaten it until this week. Shows you that it doesn’t hurt to try something again. I’ll bet it would be good in a mixed roasted veg.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. hocuspocus13 says:

    I’m a Lucky Cheater…
    I just walk down to the boardwalk to get all that delicious Summer Food with a side dish of Live Entertainment just perfectly prepared
    Best part…
    No clean up!!!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Menagerie says:

    That potato salad is almost like mine, except my husband would kill me if I put horseradish in it. Strangely, potato salad is almost my favorite food.

    We have to cut down on red meat. Instead of just chicken breast, etc, I’ve been very into ground chicken and turkey recipes. I’ll come back with a link to the turkey, spinach and feta burgers I grilled a few weeks ago.

    Also, I’ll try for find a link for a cheaper steak I love. Costco sells packs of them, they are huge. I absolutely love them as much as a ribeye if you cook them right and marinate them a long time. The leftovers are so good on top of a big green summer salad with lots of raw veggies. The trick is cook them on a hot grill, rare to medium rare, no more, and you must cover them and let them sit.

    My daughter in law makes killer deviled eggs, bacon topping, then, of all things, drizzled with honey. Sounds weird but is so good. My son has bought a smoker and the meats and veggies he cooks are indescribably good. Had something Monday called a tomahawk steak, along with pork and ribs. Smoked corn on the cob, broccoli, and slaw. Wow!

    Liked by 2 people

    • stella says:

      When you cook horseradish, it has an entirely different flavor – sweet, actually. I put a generous amount on top of my pot roast after browning, but before cooking. It’s good! I would definitely try adding it to the potato cooking water just to see.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Menagerie says:

    Cooked these on the grill. Everyone loved them, and so easy to do.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Menagerie says:

    This one was good, but if cooked on a grill would need a tray to cook one. Also it was a pain to do. Really, really good though.

    Liked by 1 person

    • stella says:

      I wonder how these would be as meatballs. Also, if you chill burgers like these (or meatballs) they are easier to cook.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Menagerie says:

        Instead of bothering with the tomato stuff I served it with a good store bought salsa. That was just exactly perfect with it. I also forgot the panko crumbs, which would have made it hold better, but not enough to grill.

        It was kind of a pain with all that chopping of the vegetables, but worth doing again. I made a double batch.

        Liked by 2 people

    • JTR says:

      You need to get one of those non-stick grilling sheets. They keep your food from falling through, but you actually get grill marks on your chicken, steaks and burger.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Menagerie says:

    Gotta have corn with summer foods, especially grilled food! Haven’t tried this yet, but it’s on the list!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Menagerie says:

    Okay, here’s the steak. I love this recipe, and until I found it I had refused to buy flank steak. When beef got so very high several years ago, and I craved a steak, I decided to risk it. It has to be cooked hot and fast!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Menagerie says:

    Here’s another summer favorite, a must have at least a couple of times. Strawberry shortcake. My husband likes the berries pretty sweet, so I slice and sugar them early in the day, then usually smash them a little. I just use angel food cake, and always make fresh whipped cream. Oh so good.

    No better summer dessert, I think. Although like the Colonel I do love blueberry pie. About six years ago I had some blueberry pie in Maine, made with those itty wild blueberries. It was divine. Best I’ve ever had, by a factor of about 10.

    I had never heard of a lobster roll until then. I bet that would be a fine summer meal too, for those lucky enough to live close to the ocean.

    Liked by 2 people

    • stella says:

      Blueberries aren’t my favorite, but the little wild ones are the best! I think I like the strawberry shortcake better with a biscuit, but the angel food is good too (if there’s enough whipped cream.)

      Liked by 2 people

    • JTR says:

      I have a really weird recipe for strawberries. Cut up as usual, sprinkle with a bit of sugar, add generous black pepper, then a good bit of balsamic vinegar. Let them macerate in the fridge as usual.
      I know, sounds strange, but it’s delicious.

      Liked by 2 people

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