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FATHER'S DAY MENU

 Grilled Pork Chops with Savory Butter or Mango Salsa
Grilled Potato Wedges
Tomato, Vidalia Onion & Basil Salad
Garlic Bread
Dad's Favorite Dessert

A Father's Day grill-fest (or any weekend grill-fest for that matter) is a friends and family affair and the best part of any day is making a delicious meal for Dad and everyone else.  A relaxing, backyard barbecue is the perfect way to bring the whole family together. 

This menu features my favorite meat....grilled pork chops that are served with a savory steak butter or a mango salsa.  Count on at least one thick rib chop per person.  I always grill at least 2 extra chops for any hearty appetites that may turn up!  The chops are sprinkled with seasoned black pepper - look in the spice section of your supermarket and you'll find several varieties of seasoned black pepper and choose the mixture you like best.  One of my favorite spice mixtures is Aromatica

When it comes to my favorite meat - pork - I try to find pork that is NOT mass produced by big-Agra.  If you have the time, you can order the most delicious pork chops from www.nimanranch.com   Here is a link directly to the pork chops page

You might find Niman Ranch at upscale food stores such as Whole Foods Market and other specialty food stores.  I can personally guarantee that once you've tasted any meats from Niman Ranch, it will be difficult to go back to the ordinary supermarket grade of "Choice" or lesser quality meats.

As far as dessert, since it's Dad's day, let dessert be whatever is his favorite - preferably store-bought so there's no additional fuss!  Maybe a great cheese cake or ice cream cake - I know either one would be my favorite store-bought dessert!  Or you can set up a make-your-own Sundae Bar (indoors when the weather is too hot!) with quality delicious ice creams in various flavors and a choice of toppings like chocolate syrup, assorted crushed nuts, dried coconut, dried fruits, chocolate chips, sprinkles, candied cherries,  and of course whipped cream for everyone to  make their own favorite Sundae!  Don't forget the maraschino cherry on top even though there isn't one in the photo!

For excellent products from King Arthur Flour including the luscious looking hot fudge in the photo, click here http://www.kingarthurflour.com/shop/items/hot-fudge-sauce-mix

A delicious alternative dessert for those who may not want to have an ice cream Sundae is a large platter of serving size cuts of summer fruits - watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew, strawberries, and tree ripe peaches from California are in the stores or at your local farmers' markets now. 
   
Click to visit Niman Ranch website Click to visit Aromatica website Click to visit Olave website

Grilled Pork Chops with Savory  Butter

 8 rib Frenched pork chops, at least 1-inch thick
Aromatica Garlic Pepper Seasoning
Savory Butter and mango salsa (recipes below)

Brush Olave olive oil on chops and season both sides generously with Aromatica organics garlic pepper seasoning to taste (available at Whole Foods Market stores or from Aromatica Organics directly).  Grill over medium-hot coals until just done, about 6 minutes each side or to an internal temperature of at least 155°F.  Serve with savory Steak Butter or Mango Salsa - or both!

     

Savory Butter 

You can make this the day or two before you need it:  In a small bowl, beat together 1 stick unsalted butter (room temperature), 2 tablespoons steak sauce (try Newman's Own Steak Sauce) 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt, 1 teaspoon liquid smoke seasoning, 1 finely minced garlic clove and a dash of hot pepper sauce. Transfer seasoned butter to a sheet of plastic wrap; re-form butter mixture into a log about 1-inch in diameter using the plastic wrap.  Store in freezer until chops are ready.  Cut pieces of seasoned butter and serve on top of hot grilled pork chops.

     
 

Mango Salsa

2 large mangoes peeled, seed removed and flesh cut into 1/4" cubes, 1 red bell pepper, seeded, cut into 1/4" cubes, 2 jalapeņo peppers, seeded and minced, 1/4 cup cilantro, minced, 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice and salt & pepper.  Combine all ingredients in a glass bowl; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until serving time.

Click to visit Olave website

Grilled Potato Wedges

Scrub 6 medium size baking (Russet) or Yukon Gold potatoes.  Cut in half lengthwise - then cut each piece in half again to yield 4 wedges. Repeat with all potatoes. Brush wedges with Olave garlic infused olive oil (available at Whole Foods Markets) and sprinkle with sea salt (or kosher salt) and ground black pepper.  Place potato wedges cut side down on a hot grill surface.  When grill marks appear on one cut side, turn wedges to grill the other cut side of each wedge.  Test for doneness with the tip of a knife or a fork.  Potato wedges can be prepared ahead of the pork chops - transfer potatoes to a foil pan and reheat on the grill before serving.

     

Tomatoes, Vidalia Onion & Basil Salad

Buy 6 vine-ripened tomatoes - they are more expensive (hot house grown) but taste the best until the local farmers start harvesting their summer tomato crops. 

Vidalia onions are starting to show up in the produce section of most large supermarkets almost year-round and you'll need maybe 3 large sweet onions. 

Slice tomatoes (a serrated bread knife works well) and arrange on a large round or oval platter. Peel and slice the Vidalia onions into 1/2 inch thick slices and place along side the tomato slices.

Drizzle on a good quality store-bought vinaigrette (try Newman's Own Oil & Vinegar Salad Dressing or Newman's Own Balsamic Dressing) or just drizzle a good extra virgin olive oil and some balsamic vinegar on the tomato and onion slices. Cut about 6 or 8 large basil leaves into thin julienne strips and sprinkle over the tomato and onion slices.  Cover the platter with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature for an hour before serving (but not outside if it's summertime hot!).

Click to visit Olave website
     

Garlic Bread

Buy a loaf of bakery quality (not a supermarket bakery unless your supermarket sells artisan and rustic style breads) French baguette or an Italian-style bread such as a Ciabatta loaf shown in the photo above.

Cut loaf in half lengthwise.  Spread each cut half with a mixture of Olave Organic extra virgin olive oil, finely minced garlic, salt, pepper, minced thyme, minced parsley.  Sprinkle grated Parmesan cheese on both halves.  Place halves together and wrap in foil.  Place on a hot grill surface for about 5 - 7 minutes on each side.  Transfer bread to the top shelf of the grill or place to the side of the grill away from direct heat to keep it will stay warm until serving.

 

 

 

 
 
           
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