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Top 5 Foods to Celebrate National Barbecue Month

5-great-barbecue-recipesBarbecues and summertime are a classic pairing, and with Memorial Day officially kicking off the season, it’s no surprise that May is National Barbecue Month. If you’ve already dusted off the grill and filled the propane tank (or stocked up on charcoal), your next move is probably sifting through your various barbecue recipes or seeking out new techniques from the best culinary schools.

But instead of relying on tried-and-true recipes that are predictably crowd-pleasing, why not celebrate National Barbecue Month by expanding beyond barbecue sauce and tossing some variety on the grill? From meats to sides to desserts (yes, even the best baking schools acknowledge the wonder of grilled fruit), here are 5 great barbecue recipes that will transport you and your grilling guests out of your comfort zones and into a whole new realm of deliciousness:

1. Stuffed flank steak pinwheels

A simple grilled steak is one of life’s simple pleasures, but consider punching up the flavor with a variety of savory ingredients rolled inside the meat and cut into pinwheels. The recipe looks much more complicated than it really is, but if you can roll up a sleeping bag, you can roll up a thin slice of steak layered with salami, fontina, Parmesan, scallions, and breadcrumbs. But be warned: the final result, a juicy pinwheel bursting with melty flavors, might make you think twice about grilling up a simple steak in the future.

2. Thai chicken satay

Chicken is one of the most versatile meats out there, with endless options for grilling, roasting, baking, and frying in recipes that span the globe. Thai chicken satay is as common in certain corners of the world as barbecue chicken is in the US, and for good reason: the succulent flavors of chicken marinated in coconut milk, chili oil, coriander, and curry powder and served with homemade peanut sauce can easily become your new barbecue staple.

 

3. Smashed potatoes

When planning your barbecue menu, don’t forget about the side dishes. Grilled vegetables in general are usually delicious, but there’s something special about grilled smashed potatoes. After boiling in water to get nice and soft, your choice of red, white or gold potatoes are gently flattened and grilled to create a near-magical combination of textures: warm and creamy on the inside, savory and crispy on the outside.

 

4. Grilled Mexican corn

If grilled corn on the cob needed nothing more than a pat of butter, Mexican corn (also called elote) wouldn’t be so increasingly popular at food truck stations and county fairs. The secret is a perfect mix of ingredients topping a precisely charred cob of corn: a dusting of chili powder, a squeeze of lime, and a generous crumble of Mexican cheese (queso fresco or cotija) that melts as it settles on the hot kernels.

 

5. Grilled and glazed strawberries

No one wants to be stuck in the kitchen on a hot summer’s day making dessert. That’s where grilled fruit shines. You’ve probably heard of grilled peaches, nectarines, and pineapples, but skewered strawberries also hold up great, caramelizing just enough to enhance their natural sweetness. Of course, that doesn’t mean they couldn’t benefit from a little extra sweetness by adding a super simple vanilla cream cheese glaze for drizzling, dipping, or dunking.

 

Expand your culinary horizons this National Barbecue Month

Now that you have a handful of new barbecue recipes to try this summer, why not consider expanding your foodie horizons beyond the grill? If you have a passion for cooking and baking but you’re not sure how to turn that passion into a career, our school of culinary arts might be the answer. At National Culinary School in San Diego, we offer cooking, pastry and baking classes as well as culinary degree programs to prepare you for a brand new career.

National Culinary School is one of the best culinary schools in San Diego, offering high quality programs and payment plans that work within your budget. So whether you’re interested in a culinary career or simply a boost in your own kitchen with cooking and baking classes in San Diego, call us today at (619) 249-5180 to speak to an enrollment advisor or fill out our contact form.