Friday, October 5, 2012

End of Summer Grilling

We have had a few BBQs with friends to round out the end of summertime, 
and I've been trying to make something new each time!  
I found all of these recipes on Pinterest
and the links to the original recipes are below the photo collage.     
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A couple of weekends ago we did some more of the grilled artichokes I mentioned here.  I'm thinking of making them again this weekend actually.  I love artichokes and they always seem to be a hit with guests.
The same evening we had blue cheese stuffed burgers.  They were SO GOOD!  My boyfriend actually made them.  He basically made two thin patties and piled blue cheese between them before sealing the edges. Warning: hot, melty cheese awaits your mouth!  Take the first bite over a plate!  ;-)
Along with the artichokes and burgers I made a cucumber and tomato salad.
It was so easy and so refreshing! 

Refreshing Cucumber and Tomato Salad
You only need: 
2 medium cucumbers, peeled and sliced  
1 ripe tomato, cut into bite sized pieces (I used one small tomato, from our garden!!, and a handful of grape tomatoes)
½ medium onion, diced
½ cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon milk (I left this out, it was already quite watery, I think from the cucumber)
Salt and pepper to taste

Mix the sugar and may, pour over cucumber/tomatoes and stir until coated. Salt/pepper... That's it!  Easy, yummy, refreshing, perfect for a picnic or BBQ. 

The following weekend, we cooked again!  We had a few friends over and ate: hot wings, more (the rest of the) artichokes, grilled halloumi and watermelon salad, and grilled strawberries (again, soooo good!) to top it all off.   YUM!

 I saw the halloumi/watermelon recipe in my Blogger feed one day, via The Cozy Kitchen.  The picture (featured below) made my mouth water!  Oftentimes I don't click on food blog recipes, as they tend to be WAY above my skill level.  But...I had just recently gotten an amazing heirloom tomato and watermelon (with balsamic) salad from a food truck so this caught my eye.  I Pinned it and just a few days later we were at Sprouts for some groceries and I saw Yanni Grilling Cheese.  While it wasn't actually labeled "halloumi" it sure sounded like the same thing to me!  So I threw it in the cart, and then grabbed a watermelon. It's very simple...

Watermelon and Grilled Cheese Salad
You need...
(I carried ) A watermelon, cut up and rind removed (keep in fridge until ready to assemble)
Halloumi or other "grilling cheese" (mine was an 8oz package)
Balsamic (1/4 cup or more depending on how many people/how big your watermelon is...?)
Honey (1 Tablespoon or more... as above)
Fresh Mint leaves (a few)
Olives (I actually  did not do the olives but they look good in the pic!)

Heat the balsamic vinegar and honey, whisking it along the way, until it simmers for a few minutes, then let it cool so it will thicken up!  As it is cooling you want to grill the cheese.  The way I cut the cheese did not work perfectly with our grill (which has pretty large spaces between the rungs/bars/whatever they are called on the grill...) but it was still kind of fun grilling cheese.  I finished the last few pieces in an egg pan on the stovetop while I was putting the salads together.  The edges of the cheese get nice and brown, and it gets really soft but doesn't lose it's shape. Then you basically just stack pieces of cold watermelon and hot cheese, drizzle some of the balsamic reduction over the top, garnish with a torn up mint leaf and dig in!  Nobody at our place was sure what to think of this when I presented it...aaand EVERYONE loved it.  :-)  I really loved it.  The cold, sweet watermelon offsets the warm and salty cheese perfectly.  And the balsamic somehow brings it all together.  Ah-maze-ing!!

The artichoke and strawberry pics are mine.  
The salads are from Pinterest/original sources. 
            1) Grilled artichokes (yep, again)
                                                       2) Cucumber and Tomato Salad                      
             3) Watermelon and Grilled Halloumi Cheese Salad (OMG)
         4) Grilled Strawberries (yep, again!)

What new dishes did you try making this summer?

I loved this watermelon salad so much I am going to share it all over the place.  :-)  Linking up with these ladies for this week! 


Secret Mom Thoughts said...

Looks yummy!

Sarah E. said...

All of those look GREAT!

Thanks for linking up to Tasty Thursday!

Soo Detroit said...

Such a nice food.