Many parts of the country are sweltering in August’s heat. Which is why we like to move serious cooking out of the kitchen, and to our grills or smokers. (Our ancestors used to maintain “summer kitchens” in the 18th and 19th centuries.) Below are some of our most popular recipes to grill or smoke in August. We’ll publish more for you in the days ahead.
Recipes for August
Sangria comes from one of the world’s great grill cultures, Spain. While we’ve never seen anyone grill this refreshing wine cooler in the land of paella and chuletón, we think you’ll find the Project Fire version as spectacular to make and serve as it is to drink. In a nutshell, you crust the citrus fruits with sugar, then caramelize them over a hot fire before adding wine. The resulting smoky burnt sugar flavor takes this sangria into the stratosphere.
You’ve heard of a “kid in a candy store.” Well, “foodies in a farmers’ market” aren’t any different! We’re so beguiled by the fresh produce, the jewel-like colors, and the abundance! Once home, we rejigger the refrigerator to make room for the glorious vegetal issue of August. But how to use it? Add this frittata to your repertoire. Perfect for weekend guests, as it can be served warm or at room temperature for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
Sometimes the difference between good and extraordinary lies in a whiff of wood smoke. Consider this salsa: You start with the usual ingredients—ripe summer tomatoes, sweet onions, jalapeños—plus one offbeat ingredient, raw corn. You smoke them before dicing and blending. Long enough to impart a hickory smoke flavor, but short enough to keep the crunch of raw fresh vegetables.
If you garden, the basil you’ve babied all summer is about to bolt (blossom). But before you give up on it—while you still have bunches!—make this swoon-worthy dish featuring salmon. This recipe is a treasure, and perfect for the waning days of summer.
Admit it: It’s the bell peppers at the market (supermarket or farmers’ market) that are the most seductive! Red, yellow, orange, green, and even purple, they’re impossible to ignore. This vinaigrette is one of the most beautiful late summer sauces we can think of, and compatible with everything from beefsteak to seafood.
In Mexico, they substituted pork for lamb when introduced to these Middle-Eastern “tacos.” So we didn’t feel too guilty subbing boneless, skinless chicken breasts for pork. These are fabulous tacos. Be generous with the pineapple. And the cilantro.
Get ‘em while they’re good! Peaches, we mean. Turn them into an ethereal peach cobbler, a recipe shared with us by Georgia native Russ Faulk. (Russ is the chief designer for Kalamazoo Gourmet, a company that creates some of the most stunning grills on Planet Barbecue.) Serve with whipped cream (REAL whipped cream) or vanilla ice cream. Maybe serve a little shot of good bourbon on the side?