(Family Features) Fireworks, family and food are what the Fourth of July is all about. This year, add some spark to backyard staples like grilled chicken and potato salad with a little help from tangy condiments, smoky rubs and your cast-iron skillet.
For a main dish that’s sure to be a crowd pleaser, smother grilled chicken with a white barbecue sauce – the South’s tangy little secret. It’s made with simple pantry ingredients like mayonnaise, cider vinegar and mustard.
Make a one-pan side dish next to the cooking chicken by placing your cast-iron skillet directly on the grates. Smash whole potatoes in the pan then top with bacon, cheese and a chipotle seasoning. Let it all melt together and then top with sour cream for a smoking side.
Round out the meal with a festive cake that looks as impressive as it tastes. Dye white cake mix batter red and blue using food color then assemble in a flag shape with whipped cream and berries.
Find more recipes and ideas to fire up your Fourth of July at McCormick.com.
White Barbecue Sauce with Smoky Chicken
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
White Barbecue Sauce:
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 cup cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons Zatarain’s Creole Mustard
- 1 teaspoon prepared horseradish
- 1/2 teaspoon McCormick Coarse Ground Black Pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon McCormick Garlic Powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup hickory wood chips
- 2 pounds bone-in chicken parts
- 2 tablespoons McCormick Grill Mates Applewood Rub
- To make sauce: In medium bowl, mix mayonnaise, vinegar, creole mustard, horseradish, black pepper, garlic and salt until well blended. Cover. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving to blend flavors.
- To make chicken: Cover wood chips in water and soak 30 minutes. Season chicken with rub. Drain wood chips. Fill smoker box with wet wood chips. Place smoker box under grill rack on one side of grill before lighting. Close grill.
- Prepare grill for indirect medium heat (350-375° F). Heat grill by turning all burners to medium. Once cooking temperature is reached, turn off burner(s) on one side. Place chicken on unlit side of grill. Close grill cover.
- Grill, turning occasionally, 30-40 minutes, or until internal temperature of thickest part of chicken is 165° F. Move chicken to lit side of grill with skin side down. Turn lit side of grill to high.
- Grill, uncovered, 3-5 minutes longer, or until chicken is charred. Serve chicken with White Barbecue Sauce.
Test Kitchen Tip: Refrigerate any leftover sauce and use as salad dressing, condiment for burgers or dipping sauce for pretzels and vegetables.
Grilled and Loaded Smashed Potatoes
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 25 minutes
- 1 1/2 pounds medium Yukon gold potatoes
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 5 teaspoons McCormick Grill Mates Bacon Chipotle Seasoning, divided
- 6 slices Applewood smoked bacon, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
- 1 cup chopped yellow onion
- 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper
- 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped green onions
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- Heat grill to medium.
- Place potatoes on microwavable plate. Pierce potatoes with fork several times. Microwave on high 5-6 minutes, or until fork-tender but still firm. Let stand until cool enough to handle. In large bowl, toss potatoes, oil and 3 teaspoons seasoning until well coated.
- Place potatoes on grill and cook, turning frequently, 4-5 minutes or until skin is crispy. In large cast-iron skillet on grill, cook and stir bacon 8-10 minutes, or until crisp. Add yellow onion and bell pepper; cook and stir 2-3 minutes, or until tender-crisp.
- Push bacon mixture to one side of skillet. Add potatoes to other side of skillet. Smash each potato with heavy spatula, bottom of small sturdy bowl or meat pounder. Sprinkle potatoes with remaining seasoning. Spoon bacon mixture over potatoes. Sprinkle with cheese.
- Cover pan or close grill. Cook 3-5 minutes, or until cheese is melted. To serve, sprinkle with green onions and dollops of sour cream.
Test Kitchen Tip: Cooking potatoes before grilling reduces overall grill time.
Red, White and Blue Cake
Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
- 1 package (2-layer size) white cake mix
- 2 teaspoons McCormick Pure Vanilla Extract
- 1/2 teaspoon Blue McCormick Assorted Neon Food Colors & Egg Dye
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons McCormick Red Food Color
- nonstick spray
- 1 container (16 ounces) white frosting
- 1 cup raspberries
- 1/2 cup blueberries
- Heat oven to 350° F.
- Prepare cake mix as directed on package, adding vanilla. Transfer 1 1/2 cups batter to small bowl and tint with neon blue food color. Tint remaining batter red by adding cocoa powder and red food color. Pour each color batter into separate 9-by-5-inch loaf pans sprayed with nonstick cooking spray.
- Bake blue-tinted cake 20-25 minutes; red-tinted cake 30-35 minutes. Cool cakes in pans 10 minutes. Remove from pans; cool completely.
- Trim cakes to remove rounded tops and edges. Slice red cake in half horizontally to form two thin layers. Place one layer on platter. Slice remaining red cake layer in half lengthwise. Slice blue cake in half lengthwise. (Blue and red cakes should be same dimensions.)
- Frost red cake layer on platter with 1/3 frosting. Top with lengthwise slices of red and blue cake side-by-side. Frost with 1/3 frosting. Repeat cake layer and frosting. Garnish with raspberries and blueberries to resemble flag.
Source: McCormick Spice
Adds Spark to End-of-Season Cookouts
(Family Features) “Barbecue” is a word that, when uttered, makes mouths water and keeps folks tending pits and grills for hours at a time. But with little time left for optimal outdoor cooking this season, how do you turn up the heat and ensure your next barbecue is the best of the bunch?
Although the “world’s best” barbecue is perhaps the most feuded-over food claim, it’s hard not to think of the South in connection with best-of-class barbecue.
<p>Southern barbecue, with its time-burnished, rich tradition of cooking meat slowly over a wood fire, offers a distinctive style and unique flavor. Great pitmen come from the South, and many great barbecue showdowns take place in the South, like the Jack Daniel’s® World Championship Invitational Barbecue Contest held annually in Lynchburg, Tennessee. And while the definition of “best barbecue” varies from region to region, there are a few standard Southern barbecue traditions that hold true throughout the entire Southern barbecue belt and beyond.
For one, barbecue in the South usually means pork, but there are a few exceptions; beef is most often the meat of choice for Texas barbecue, and mutton is used in parts of Kentucky.
Another sticking point for Southern barbecue is the sauce. Most would agree that bathing your barbecue with a perfectly seasoned, balanced sauce makes the difference between ho-hum and sublime.
Many sauces contain ingredients such as molasses, brown sugar, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, cider vinegar, black pepper, onion, celery, garlic, mustard, cayenne pepper, vegetable oil and salt, with some variations. And while there are some true Southerners that would take issue with any barbecue sauce that’s simply not their own, there are a few bottled sauces that can make your celebration simpler while still holding true to Southern barbecue traditions.
Jack Daniel’s® Barbecue Sauce, for example, is a welcomed Southern guest at any barbecue just burning to make a good impression. Whether it’s the sweet and spicy flavor of Original No. 7 or the genuine wood-smoked flavoring of Hickory Brown Sugar, Jack Daniel’s Barbecue Sauce offers the flavor of the famous Jack Daniel’s Whiskey with just the right amount of Southern hospitality to please everyone.
Yet another long-standing tradition at Southern barbecues are the sides and accompaniments. Some of the most popular items used to complement a traditional barbecue meal include old standards such as cole slaw, baked beans and hush puppies. However, modern-day Southern cooks are more willing to welcome a wider array of accompaniments, including something as delightful as bacon-wrapped barbecued shrimp.
So, light the grill, hum a few bars of the “Tennessee Waltz” and get ready to go out of the season in style — Southern barbecue style, that is. Try these tempting recipes or visit www.JackDanielsSauces.com for ideas on how to inspire your own barbecue specialty. Let’s get to eatin’!
Makes 4 servings
- 1-1/2 cups Jack Daniel’s® Honey Smokehouse Barbecue Sauce, divided
- 1-1/2 cups Jack Daniel’s Hickory Brown Sugar Barbecue Sauce
- 3 pounds country ribs (boneless pork)
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/4 cup honey
- Set aside 1/2 cup Honey Smokehouse barbecue sauce to use on cooked ribs.
- Place ribs in 4-quart saucepot. Combine remaining ingredients and pour over ribs. Cover and simmer 1 hour or until tender. While cooking, prepare grill.
- Remove ribs from sauce and discard liquid. Grill 15 minutes or until browned. Brush on reserved sauce to finish ribs.
Backyard Brawl Baked Beans
Makes 4 servings
- 4 slices thick-sliced bacon, chopped
- 2 cups chopped onion
- 1/2 green pepper, chopped
- 2 garlic gloves, chopped
- 2 (16-ounce) cans Heinz Vegetarian Beans, drained and rinsed
- 1/3 cup molasses
- 1/2 cup Jack Daniel’s® Spicy Original Recipe Barbecue Sauce
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce
- 1 teaspoon dark brown mustard
- 1 tablespoon dry mustard
- 1 tablespoon Heinz Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1/4 tablespoon Liquid Smoke, or to taste
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- In heavy pot, cook bacon over medium heat to render fat. Add onion, green pepper and garlic, and cook until vegetables are soft, about 5 minutes.
- Stir in beans, molasses, barbecue sauce, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, brown mustard, dry mustard, cider vinegar and liquid smoke. Simmer, uncovered, until rich and thickly flavored, 10 to15 minutes, stirring with wooden spoon. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Note: May also place beans in baking dish and bake in preheated 350°F oven about 30 minutes.
Bacon-Wrapped Barbecued Shrimp
Makes 4 servings
- 1-1/2 cups Jack Daniel’s® Barbecue Sauce
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 pound peeled and deveined shrimp
- 1/2 pound pepper bacon (or preferred bacon)
- Cut bacon slices in half. Cook bacon partially (should not be crisp). Prepare grill.
- Combine barbecue sauce, garlic powder and lemon juice; pour half of mixture into separate bowl for use later. Dip shrimp into remaining sauce to thoroughly coat. Wrap each piece of shrimp with 1/2 piece of bacon. Place on skewer (leave small space between pieces). Brush grill with vegetable oil, place skewers on hot grill and baste with remaining sauce. Grill approximately 4 to 6 minutes.
Southern-Style Cole Slaw
Makes 4 servings
- 1/4 cup Heinz Apple Cider Vinegar
- 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- Pinch of ground allspice
- 3 ounces red onion, finely diced
- 6 ounces green cabbage, coarsely chopped
- 4 ounces cucumbers, peeled and seeded, coarsely chopped
- 3 ounces red pepper, coarsely chopped
- 2 ounces green pepper, coarsely chopped
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- In medium saucepan, bring vinegar, brown sugar, celery seed, turmeric, ginger and allspice to simmer on medium heat.
- Stir in onion, remove from heat and allow to stand 5 minutes to cool. Meanwhile, toss cabbage, cucumbers and peppers in mixing bowl. In another bowl, whisk olive oil into cooled vinaigrette mixture.
- Pour mixture over vegetables and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Source: Jack Daniel's Sauces
(Family Features) For millions of football fans, the grill is as important as the gridiron when enjoying a weekend of games. There’s nothing like team spirit, the anticipation of kickoff and the smell of a delicious pregame tailgate wafting through the stadium parking lot.
National barbecue expert Rocky Stubblefield of Stubb’s Legendary Bar-B-Q offers tips and recipes for game day grilling that will have the whole crowd cheering.
Keep it simple
Stubblefield says anything that cooks fast on the grill is great for tailgating – burgers, hotdogs, chicken – and to bring on the flavor without having to pack a carload of ingredients, use sauces, rubs and marinades. Prepare as much food as you can ahead of time and have a checklist for the things you always need but are easy to forget, like napkins and tin foil.
For perfectly shaped, evenly cooked burgers, make a thumbprint in the middle of each patty before grilling. Amp up the flavor by rubbing your burgers with Stubb’s Bar-B-Q rub before putting them on the grill – just like you would a brisket or ribs. No matter what you’re making, wait to put the sauce on until the very end of grilling to avoid charring and burning.
For dozens of easy, delicious tailgating recipes, visit stubbsbbq.com.
Toasted Pecan Burgers
- 1 pound ground chuck
- 1/4 cup chopped red onion
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans, toasted
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped green bell pepper
- 3 tablespoons Stubb’s Original Bar-B-Q Sauce
- 2 tablespoons Stubb’s Bar-B-Q Spice Rub
- Mix together chuck, onion, pecans, bell pepper, sauce and rub. Shape into 4 patties.
- Prepare grill for direct cooking. When coals are ashed over in charcoal grill, spread them in bottom of grill so food can cook directly over coals.
- Grill burgers over direct, medium heat, first on one side then the other, 7-10 minutes, until they reach desired doneness. Medium burgers register an internal temperature of 160° F.
- Serve with your favorite burger toppings on toasted buns.
Smokey Stuffed Jalapenos with Bacon
- 1/2 pound uncooked chorizo
- 16 ounces cream cheese
- 24 fresh jalapenos, halved and seeded
- 24 slices bacon (about 2 pounds), halved
- 1 cup Stubb’s Smokey Mesquite Bar-B-Q Sauce
- Heat skillet to medium heat and prepare grill for direct cooking.
- Remove chorizo casing and cook in skillet over medium heat until cooked through. Transfer cooked chorizo to paper towel-lined plate to drain and cool.
- Mix cream cheese and chorizo.
- Stuff each jalapeno half with cream cheese mixture. Wrap with half strip of bacon and secure with toothpick.
- Place peppers on grill and cook 8-10 minutes, turning frequently. Baste peppers with sauce during last 2 minutes of cooking.
Source: Stubb's Legendary Bar-B-Q
(Family Features) The rich smell and crisp, smoky flavor of fresh sizzling bacon is a temptation few diners can resist. Indeed, some 53 percent of Americans eat bacon at least once a week, according to a recent survey by Smithfield. This love for bacon is fueling a culinary craze for bacon-infused and -inspired foods - everything from the tame (sauces) to the outrageous (ice cream).
But perhaps this trend should come as no surprise. After all, a full 78 percent of Smithfield's survey respondents agreed that bacon makes everything better.
Whether you're pairing your morning eggs with strips of their most perfect protein sidekick, loading up a BLT with an extra layer of bacon-y crunch, or following the lead of the nation's top chefs and experimenting with new flavor combinations, you're likely to achieve a crowd pleaser.
Quirky products and recipes aside, for the average consumer, the simple versatility of bacon makes it a winning addition to most meals. Even a classic pork chop, one of the most popular cuts of fresh pork, takes on a new personality when paired with the distinctly savory flavor of bacon, as in this recipe for Bacon Pork Chops with BBQ Glaze.
Image and recipe provided by The Pork Board
Bacon Pork Chops with BBQ Glaze
- 4 6-7 ounce Smithfield Boneless Pork Loin Chops (1 1/4-inch thick)
- 1 teaspoon coarse salt
- 4 slices Thick-Cut Smithfield Bacon
- 4 tablespoons barbecue sauce
- 1/2 cup lager beer
- 1 teaspoon canola oil
- 1/2 cup chicken broth, reduced-sodium
- Season pork with salt. Wrap bacon around edges of pork and secure with wooden toothpick.
- Mix together barbecue sauce and beer.
- Heat oil in oven-proof large skillet over medium-high heat. Stand chops with bacon-wrapped edges down in skillet, leaning against side of pan if needed. Using tongs, rotate chops along edges to lightly brown bacon (allow about 45 seconds to brown each section).
- Place chops flat side down in skillet and cook until underside is lightly browned, about one minute. Turn chops over. Spread equal amount of barbecue sauce mixture over each chop, letting excess run into skillet.
- Place skillet with chops in oven and bake for 10 minutes. Transfer each chop to dinner plate and let stand.
- Pour fat from skillet, leaving browned bits. Heat skillet over high heat until hot. Add broth and bring to a boil, scraping up browned bits with wooden spoon, and boil until reduced by half, about two minutes. Top each chop with spoonful of sauce and serve hot.