Fireworks, and Fire Up! (your grill that is!)

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Barbecue season will be in full swing this weekend as the 4Th of July is quickly approaching. Many are planning a relaxing summer day with family and friends and there will be cook outs everywhere. The smell of ribs, steaks, burgers and hot dogs will permeate the air!

I thought I’d share with you a few things we like to grill ,and a couple of sides.

Pork tenderloin is great on the grill, it doesn’t take long. the meat is always tender, and if you just slice it open like a book, it can be marinated and stuffed with just about anything. In this case I made an olive tapenade, mixed it with a little Dijon mustard, spread it all over, and then rolled and tied it. Mighty Good!!

Beer Can chicken, if you’ve never tried it, please do! It may not look the most attractive, but the taste is phenomenal, crispy on the outside and super moist on the inside. Just remember to plug the top so all the moisture of the beer stays inside. As far as your choice of spice, the sky’s the limit!! Here I used, paprika, thyme, cayenne, granulated garlic, dry mustard, salt and pepper, cumin, sometimes a little brown sugar too. Mix it all up together and after coating your chicken with olive oil, slather it on.

Pasta salad is always a favorite with my family, you can make it a million different ways, this is an old stand by recipe, I just changed it up with some Cavatappi pasta. Olives, broccoli, shredded carrots, red onions, fresh basil and parsley, granulated garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper, and tons of Romano cheese. This is always a request by my daughter!

Who doesn’t like corn on the cob? Keep the heat out of your house and cook it on the grill. I like to cut the cobs smaller, it’s easier to fit on your plate.
Sometimes I like to spice it up a bit, for a change of pace.

Just melt some butter, have your spices ready, in this case I just mixed some paprika, cumin, granulated garlic, salt and pepper. Dip your corn in the butter, sprinkle with the spice, and grill!
Mmmm, it’s so good!

Cannellini Bean Salad, this is a great side that can be made ahead of time, in fact, it tastes even better as it sits. Canned beans, rinsed and drained, diced tomatoes, red and green peppers diced, a little jalapeno for some heat, crushed garlic, chopped parsley, basil, tossed in a fresh lemon and olive oil dressing.

And last but not least, I can’t take credit for this Blueberry Tart, I actually found it by way of Mile Fiori Favoriti, a blog I visit often. What appealed to me was how she made it sound and the ease of making it, go over and check her out, she has the link to the recipe. I made it last Sunday and it was a real hit!!! I WILL be making this again. Thanks Pat!!

Blueberries, almond flavor, and in my case, ( shhhh, don’t tell anyone) I used a store bought pie pastry dough, you know, the kind that’s already rolled out. Again I’m plugging Trader Joe’s, check it out in their freezer case, it taste’s outstanding.

I hope I’ve given you some inspiration for some good eats ,and good grilling, I would love to know some of your favorites for the summer and the grill.

Wishing you all lot’s of fun and food for the 4TH!!!

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  1. Fire it up,girl…the chicken and pork look grand. Truth be told, I still grill in the winter!

  2. This all looks fantastic Marie! I have never tried beer can chicken..thanks for this post..I’ll have to try it!
    I just made a blueberry & raspberry cheese tart! I love the seasons fruits and veggies!

  3. Love the pork, and my daughter loves pasta salad, never thought about adding the Romano, thanks for the tip.

    Your pics are fantastic!

  4. Whoa… nothing halfway for YOU! 😉

    I think Taste of Chicago should be held at your place next year.

    Everything looks amazing.

  5. Such a spectaculiar meal!
    This is great summertime food. Thanks for the pasta salad recipe. I’m definitely making that one this weekend.

  6. That pork tenderloin looks scrumptious. I’m always looking for ways to cook up tenderloin — thanks for sharing.

  7. ooo lovely, there’s nothing like a bbq of a balmy summer evening! and the bluberry tart sounds divine, nothign wrong with using bought pastry at all, a shortcut or 2 never hurt anyone!

  8. Im loving the pork tenderloin. What a great stuffing. And thatpie looks heavenly. Need to try the Trader Joes puff pastry.

  9. What a splendid, colorful feast! My favorite summer grill dishes include grilled fruit like peaches, pineapple and watermelon with a honey-lime glaze. I’m also crazy for grilled corn, zucchini, and green onion with fresh pesto.

  10. Marie ALL THIS looks fantastic and yummy I love this type of BBQ’S so nice, look lovely, LOL xxxGloria

  11. Your pictures look so good, I am drooling!

  12. Wow! Now that’s what I’d call a festive spread! The grilled pork tenderloin as well as the beer can chicken look terrific. I’ve never done the beer can thing; I’ll have to give it a go! And that salad … YUM!
    Bring on the holiday!

  13. So much great looking food! That stuffed pork sounds really tasty!

  14. I’d love to come to your next barbecue, Marie, you are a food artist for sure! And I can’t wait to try my hand at that Rum, Raisin and Ricotta Danish Braid – it looks sumptuous. Happy Fourth of July!

  15. Wow Marie! That looks like a wonderful BBQ — great recipes just in time for the 4th of July! I love “beer can” chicken — so moist when it’s cooked that way.

    I am so flattered that you liked the blueberry tart on my blog to make it yourself — and yours looks so delicious! Wasn’t it so easy? Even the dough was easy to make in a food processor, but store bought Trader Joe dough is great too 🙂 The nice thing about the tart is that each slic eis only 200 calories and blueberries are high in antioxidants, so it fits well into a healthy diet too!

    Thanks so much!

  16. Man you’ve really lit a fire under us!

    I like the idea of cutting and stuffing the tenderloin. Oh, your pasta salad has inspired me to make my own. I have always been skeptical based on what I have had at other places.

  17. I can’t stop looking at that corn! Or that crust on the tart!! All great ideas for the 4th!

  18. I’m with you on the grillin’ — although it’s not a holiday here, I’ll be serving up a fine bbq dinner to end the week (and to bring on the weekend). A shame though, that there won’t be any fireworks!

  19. Happy 4th of July early. BBBQ’s are in the works:D

  20. What time will I come over Marie:)

  21. I’m with Lorraine – what time should we arrive? I’ll bring the frozen watermelon & tequila! My goodness. All of this looks so grand.

    Happy 4th to you or as Alfredo & my son say, “May the Fourth be with You!” (I know, I have the biggest dorks in my family, but they still make me laugh.)

    xoxox Amy

  22. Congrats on the Chicago’s Best Blog award from the Tribune. They are correct, you do have one of the best blogs!

  23. Peter, I do too,but not when it’s 30 below brrrr!

    Laurie, I hope you try beer can chicken its so good. I gotta go check out your tart!

    Ohio, Thanks, Romano makes it!

    Jen, lol Your too funny, thanks!

    Eating Club, You’re very welcome!

    Rachel, Especially if it’s really a good product!

    Michelle, Let me know how it turns out,ok?

    Courtney, its the pie pastry, not puff, I guess its sort of new.

    Thanks Susan, and all the things you mentioned sound wonderful!

    Thank you Gloria!

    Jo, Most of this, you and UJ shared with us!

    Paula, Do the beer thing!

    Kevin,It really was!

    Barbara, You’re welcome anytime!

    Pat, No, Thank You for leading me to that tart, and its only 200 cal per slice?

    Cynthia, No need to be skeptical anymore!

    Cakespy, lol! Thanks

    Rowena, I hope you take pic’s of that fine BBQ

    Val, Thanks 😀

    Lor, Any time you want!!

    Amy, I got the glasses chillin in the freezer for us! May the fourth be with you too! lol

    Thanks Jo, I’m so excited and honored!!

  24. It looks like you’re all sorted out for the weekends celebrations. Thx for the pork recipe – I have a pork fillet that I can use for this. Enjoy yourselves!

  25. I just stumbled on your blog. I’m in food heaven. I am adding you to my newest blog called An Herbal Bedfellow, it’s a companion to Thyme for Herbs. I can’t wait to visit again. You are inspiring.

  26. I’m so proud of our Italian Cook receiving a Chicago’s Best Blog award! You go girl! Big big hug!! xox

  27. Hi Nina, You’re so creative, I can’t wait till I see what you come up with!

    H Jane Mare, Welcome and thanks for visiting, can’t wait to check out you blog.

    Thanks Maryann, Big hug to you too!!

  28. Oh my- I wish I lived next door is all I’m saying- I’d completely be knocking on you door saying can I borrow a cuppa everything! 😉

  29. What’s this about an award?? Tell meeeeee;)

  30. Hi Marie – I have been traveling, and missed reading my favorite blogs. Today is the Fourth of July, and I am so happy reading this post. How festive. And cooking for a crowd, you’ve got loads of great ideas. Hope you have a wonderful holiday, and I know for a fact that your family will be eating well 🙂

  31. Wow! What an amazing spread. I particularly want to try the chicken and tart. But everything looks sooo good.

    Congratulations on the recognition!

  32. I heart beer can chicken!