It’s the T-bone of summer, the meatiest cut, when hazy days slouch sweaty toward the relief of afternoon storms and fireflied nights. Hovering ‘round a pile of red-hot coals seems a hellish way to beat the heat, and yet, gourmet grillables beckon. Chill, caveman. A primal, fire-cooked feast is possible without (too much) sweat. With these pre-made goods and easy recipes, we turn a day’s hot toil into easy outdoor dining.
Fire Roasted Pineapple Salsa // Zukali // Plano, TX
If the first cro-magnon to toss a mastodon shank on the fire thought he was smart, consider the moment of Newton-esque brilliance that brought us grilled fruit: a pineapple slice falls in the flames, and summer food is forever transformed. Inspired by the caramelized wedge atop traditional tacos al pastor, from the Texas plains comes an eminently spoonable, dippable, add-it-to-anything sauce of roasted fruit, cilantro, and mellow chilies.
Bourbon Sugar Grilled Peaches Recipe Here
Bourbon Smoked Sugar // Bourbon Barrel Foods // Louisville, KY
A spoonful of sugar can chase the toughest-to-take pill, as our favorite flying nanny told us — or with the addition of whisky, it can be the medicine itself. These raw crystals, smoked over smoldering bourbon barrel staves, will cure whatever ails you, from a lagging julep (sprinkle around the rim) to a last-minute dessert: mix a dash into melted butter, brush onto peach halves, and toss on the grill to caramelize.
Grilled Potato & Chorizo Salad Recipe here
Imperial Dry Cured Chorizo // Pata Negra // Gloversville, NY
Named after Spain’s famous acorn-fattened black-hoofed pigs, Pata Negra brings the best of Andalusia to the foothills of the Adirondacks: high-grade hams, authentic Iberian pimentón, and a languorous five weeks’ aging (if the Spanish know anything, it’s the glory of a good nap). Snack on slices as a tapa while the grill heats up, and if there’s any left over (we doubt it), wrap in foil with potatoes, onions, and a splash of aceite and grill for a juicy, bacon-rich potato salad.
Israeli Couscous With Grilled Lemon & Smoked Olive Oil Recipe here
Israeli Couscous // Bob’s Red Mill // Milwaukie, OR
Smoked Olive Oil // Holy Smoke // Charleston, SC
Time was, side salads meant gloopy mayo and cold ziti — no wonder the Miller Man scoffed. But if you’re sipping craft beer and grilling prime cuts, your pasta should stand proud. With nutty, chewy semolina-flour pearls from the grain gods at Bob’s, cold-pressed California oil, smoked over Carolina hickory and pecan wood, and a spritz of juice from a couple charred lemon halves, the gifts of the grill can kiss even the meatless.
Grady’s Cold Brew Creamsicle Recipe Here
Cold Brew Bean Bags // Grady’s Cold Brew // Brooklyn, NY
The only thing better than coffee is iced coffee — and the only thing better than iced coffee is New-Orleans-style cold brew, perfected, as only Brooklyn coffee snobs can do, by the folks at Grady’s. Steep this spicy-smooth mix of chicory and dark-roasted beans overnight and pour over ice the morning after, or better yet, mix in a few ounces of bourbon, some heavy cream, and a bit of sugar — bourbon-smoked, naturally — and freeze into grown-up creamsicles.
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