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Grill tips for Summer

Hard Rock’s Chef Gronlund shares these ideas
to put the heat in your July 4 barbecue bash.

Join the army of backyard barbecue masters this summer who strive to create a memorable meal for July Fourth. Jason Gronlund, executive chef for Hard Rock Cafe, offers these tips that will create a barbecue to rock the block.

Gronlund recommends music to inspire the menu.

“Perhaps choose Latin music and look up Latin-inspired dishes to have at the barbecue,” he said. “Let the music match the food, and the food the ambiance.”

When friends who will be attending the barbecue ask, “what can I bring,” inspire them to try something new that will compliment your theme. (See recipe below)

Here are a few additional grilling tips for this summer:

• Knobs on the grill? They don’t always need to go to high, according to Gronlund. Turn the grill down and cook over a low flame.

• Have some great utensils. Gronlund recommends a great knife and a couple of spatulas, including a heavier one for hamburgers and a lighter one for fish and delicate items. “Don’t forget those pair of tongs,” he said.

• Don’t smash the mash. Many people push down on the hamburger or meat when grilling, but that pushes out the juice to the bottom of the grill. Place the meat on the grill, turn four times while cooking both sides for four minutes each time, adjusting the time depending on how thick the cut is. When the meat is ready to be pulled off the gril, let it sit and rest on the platter for several minutes so it is nice and juicy in the center.

• Be brave with your seasonings. Use fresh ingredients and the great items in the local market, like fennel, lemon, and sea salt.

Want to relax and let Hard Rock Cafe do the cooking? Click here for information about AAA dining discounts.

Mojito YogurtMojito Yogurt with Fresh Strawberries and Mixed Tropical Fruit

This light dessert will be a welcome finale to a Latin-inspired outdoor barbecue.
Contributed by Executive Chef Jason R. Gronlund, Hard Rock Cafe International

2 cups Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
2 teaspoons fresh lime zest
1/4 cup sugar
Using a medium mixing bowl, thoroughly mix the above ingredients with a wire whisk until evenly blended. Place in a plastic container. Cover and refrigerate for at least four hours prior to serving.

Strawberry/Mixed Fruit
3 cups fresh strawberries, cleaned, stemmed and quartered
1 cup seasonal mixed tropical fruit of choice, diced. Chef’s note: Tropical fruits may include mango, papaya, and pineapple.
2 tablespoons sugar
Place fruit and sugar in a mixing bowl and gently blend. Store in a plastic container with a tight-fitting lid. Chill for four hours.

To serve: Place 1/2 cup of mixed fruit in individual serving glasses or clear glass bowls. Top with 1/2 cup of the yogurt mixture and garnish with mint leaves.

Makes 4 servings.

Jul/Aug 2012 Issue

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