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Lighten Up: Memorial Day BBQ Veg Out

Kicking Your Muffin Top’s Ass for America

Not that I’m one for reducing, but with the weather getting warmer and bathing suit season quickly approaching (Damn! It’s here!) my tummy starts craving veggies in a manic kind of way. And when the Memorial Day barbecue gets its flare on, I want to smother my plate with a mess of farm-fresh goodies in a salad extravaganza. I figure with enough luscious tomatoes, crisp greens and light and lovely lemony vinaigrette, my stomach will have enough wholesome veg to stave off the actions of the celebratory booze sloshing around my tummy without adding to the muffin-top. Fuck a muffin top. Regardless of any sort of dietary aims, this menu is a grand celebration of the season and a good use for any produce you’ve managed to grown on your own (or with the help of the local farmer’s market).

watermelonsorbet Watermelon Sorbet - This sorbet is an absolute delight that celebrates the joy of the season - fresh watermelon. The sticky pulp is heightened by zesty limes, with just a bit of grenadine and cherry to enhance its bright pink color.
Chicken Paillard with Arugula © Spice or Die Chicken Paillard with Arugula - This recipe is a playful take on the humdrum grilled chicken salad. Rather than constructing the plate as a salad topped with pannéed chicken breast, arugula and sun-ripe tomatoes are piled atop the protein.
pastasalad Greek Pasta Salad - I like this pasta salad because it's made from simple ingredients that most people love, and the flavors are bright and tasty. Nothing strange here - just crisp veggies and curly pasta sopping up lemony vinaigrette.
String Bean and Heirloom Tomato Salad String Bean & Heirloom Tomato Salad - Ok, maybe it's not summer yet, but I do like it when I can get produce to do my bidding at any given season and remind me of the joys of a fruitful harvest from the garden. This salad, based on one that I fell in love with at the restaurant The Smith, is a bright assortment of crisp and tart, sweet and salty flavors. It'll make you want to sit in a hammock and sway on a warm summer night.

6 thoughts on “Lighten Up: Memorial Day BBQ Veg Out”

  1. This is a very nice Memorial Day menu. I’m still, however, drawn to your buttermilk fried chicken with butter pecan waffles.

  2. I love summer foods. They make my mouth so happy. Unfortunately we’re about to plunge into winter here. The sun is shining but my hands are numb, and hot, rich comfort food seems like the meal du jour…

    1.  @vanessalillian You had the opposite problem with my dilemna over cooking Bouef Bourguignon in the dead middle of summer!  What is your go to comfort food for the winter?

      1.  @Angela G.
         Anything casserole-y or containing gravy, served with mashed potatoes, thus my extreme happiness with the Bouef Bourguignon! In fact, sausages with onion gravy served with mash, carrots and peas makes me verrrry happy and doesn’t take as long to make as a casserole, nor does it require turning the oven on and heating the house up :) In fact, let’s face it – I could just live off mashed potato. Or sausages. Or gravy *goes to happy place* Any favourites for you besides BB?

        1.  @vanessalillian Mashed potatoes and swedish meatballs.  Hell, mashed potatoes with anything.  Macaroni and cheese with crispy breadcrumbs on top.  Slurping up long strands of spaghetti bolognese.  Chicken soup with homemade noodles that are so blubbery, they’re almost dumplings.  Braised shortribs with crimini mushrooms on a bed of creamy polenta.  And yes, gravy over all ;)

        2.  @Angela G.
           Oh, Ange, I’m in a food coma just thinking about it. Now I’m glad the weather has turned because this stuff is on the menu! I’ll do my best to post about it so you can eat vicariously through me :)

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