Now that it’s starting to feel more like summer, the smell of charcoal is all around. Gather up your friends for a little backyard fun, food, laughs and a cold drink.
Brad here, filling in for Rob and making my morning news blog debut! For me, cooking is something I enjoy, and I experiment frequently in the kitchen. Here are a couple of my favorites, some easy, others a little more challenging if you feel like throwing down.
What would summer grilling be without burgers? I’m going to introduce you to the Juicy Lucy. It’s super simple and combines two of my favorites, cheese and burgers. Using whatever kind of meat you want, ground beef, chuck, sirloin, or even lean meats, make your patties. You can make them a little thinner if you like because you will be putting two of them together. Once the patties are made, take your favorite cheese and place it in the middle of one of patties. Last week, I put extra sharp cheddar in mine. Then place the other patty on top and crimp the two together. Now you’re ready to grill and when you bite into the burger that cheese will ooze out. Delicious!
Another great combination is tomatoes, crackers or bread, cheese and a little red wine. Now this can be served as an appetizer or even a meal. Slice up some fresh tomatoes, pick a couple basil leaves from your garden, sprinkle a little salt and pepper and you have a nice caprese salad/snack once you add the cheese.
Cheese and crackers is always easy and usually a pleaser. I like to slice up some French or Italian bread and throw in the oven for a few minutes to give it an extra crunch. Now, here is where you decide to go all the way with the cheese if you want. Sure, I love the block cheese, it’s easy and tasty. However, recently I decided to make cheese from scratch. I had never done anything like it, but I will certainly do it again. It took about an hour, but it was worth it. I won’t bore you with the long tedious process, so I’ll simply leave you the link. http://www.cook-italian.com/weblog/2009/08/how-to-make-mozzerella-recipe.html
This is certainly not the only recipe for homemade cheese; it’s just the one I used.
However, I wasn’t done. I made my mozzarella with a twist. After I was finished I flattened the ball and put about a cup of ricotta in the middle and then made a ball again leaving me with a mozzarella ball stuffed with ricotta…yes, cheese stuffed cheese!
On a hot day a cold drink might be better, but I served it with a Ruffino Chianti.
Most of the dishes I make are based on a recipe but I always alter it, adding my own flavor and touch. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t, but that’s why I love cooking.