Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Labor Day BBQ

Yep, it's Labor Day and what is Labor Day without a cookout??  Here Labor Day is 1 May, so we got Monday off.  With some impromptu planning on Sunday, we were able to reserve a BBQ pit at my condo and send out some text invites.  I went out shopping for meat, came back with a boatload of stuff, but only about half what I thought I needed :).  In true family fashion, I decided to over-do things a bit.  

Menu for the afternoon:
-Ground beef for sliders
-Cubed lamb for kebabs
-Red & yellow peppers for kebabs and salad
-Mushrooms for kebabs
-Tomatoes for sliders and salad (cold salad with sliced roasted peppers, chunks of tomatoes and olive oil - with feta if you like)
-Coke for some Captain'n'Coke
-Johnsonville brats
-Cheap Cambodian beer for brats
-Buns for sliders and brats
-Avocados & other ingredients for Nicole's guacamole
-Cheese and pickles for sliders
-Pita bread for hummus
-Tostitos for the guac

...yeah and that was only my list.  Everyone else was bringing a dish and drinks as well :).  Not to mention that I got more beef and lamb Monday morning along with Tzatziki sauce and something special for dessert.  

I hadn't realized that I've never actually used a charcoal grill.  Thankfully a couple of pro-grillers were in the group and saved the day.  I got some starter blocks but no lighter time I know :).

We managed to finish off half the brats and sliders I got along with some marinated chicken wings someone else brought along.  The lamb kebabs unfortunately were frozen to be grilled another day.  The guac was also postponed due to unripened avocados and plenty of other salads brought by others.

Then for dessert.  I spoke with my good friend from home, aka Martha Stewart of Peoria, and she said what about grilled pineapple?  I'm a sucker for pineapple with anything of late.  So, I bought the inside of a pineapple - yep they had already "peeled" it for me.  Sliced it up, put it in a bowl, added some dark rum and plenty of brown sugar (all to taste - very judgmental).  Then shake and let marinate.  Heat it up on the grill, serve....and everyone loves it :).  Definitely a hit and I'm not sure if I'll be able to have a BBQ again without the grilled pineapple.

It was a wonderful afternoon and we managed to avoid the rain even though the clouds remained.  Only thing better would have been sunny skies and a dip in the pool.  Oh! - and removal of the whistles from the pre-teen birthday party a few pits away from us :).

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