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May is national BBQ month! Days are getting longer and the weather is getting warmer, so what better time to gather friends and family together for a casual, fun dinner. Here are some of my favorite dishes to serve this time of year – a variety of main dishes as well as the perfect sides and an impressive, refreshing dessert, all of which can be prepared in part or completely ahead of time. And, I’m featuring here “no-grill” recipes you can prepare for your BBQ! Read on . . .
You can buy lots of delicious BBQ sauces at the grocery store, but once you make my Oklahoma BBQ Sauce, you’ll never buy the bottled stuff again. Super easy to prepare, this sauce has just the right balance between spice and sweet. It lasts for months in your refrigerator and is delicious on ribs, beef, pork or chicken.
Just put a chuck or arm roast in the slow cooker with water in morning, drain it, shred it and put it back in with our Oklahoma BBQ Sauce and cook it a few more hours, and presto! you have scrumptious BBQ Beef for your sandwiches.
For this recipe, if you don’t have a grill you can bake it in the oven. If you do like to grill, fire it up and get ready for some fabulous BBQ Chicken, again using our Oklahoma BBQ Sauce.
Tradition requires that I make this salad at least once every year. Dorothy Hartwell is the creator of this recipe, and she was the mother of my childhood best friend Katey. Every summer Dorothy would host a casual summer dinner with hot dogs and her potato salad. Once the weather starts to turn warm, I start craving this salad. Note that it’s best to start preparing this salad the day before.
I created this dish one night when we were camping in our airstream trailer. Shredded cabbage, carrots, green onions and jicama are tossed together with mayonnaise, dijon mustard, lemon juice, vinegar, celery seeds and celery salt. Yum!
After BBQ dishes, I like to serve a refreshing, fruity dessert like this tart. The secret ingredient in my tart is ginger – two ways: gingersnap cookies in the crust and crystallized ginger in the filling.
Here are two suggested menus featuring these dishes, with a few other favorites added in too:
Menu #1: Southern style BBQ
Benedictine Cheese Canapés
Coleslaw with Lemon-Mayonnaise Dressing
Minted Green Beans with Feta and Pecans (in A Well-Seasoned Kitchen®, p.76)
Key Lime Pie with Ginger Whipped Cream (in Fresh Tastes, p.231)
Menu #2: Family-Style BBQ
Pimiento Cheese Spread
BBQ Beef Sandwiches
Dorothy’s Potato Salad
Cilantro Peanut Coleslaw (in A Well-Seasoned Kitchen®, p. 70)
Potato Chips (purchased)
Lemon-Ginger Blueberry Tart