Fourth of July 2015: Five recipes to share with family and friends at a cookout

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By: Danielle Waldron
dwaldron@flavor574.com

Andrew Malone/Flickr

When you’re invited to someone’s home for a cookout, the very least you can do is bring some paper plates or a party-sized bag of potato chips. 

Fourth of July falls on a Saturday this year, so more likely than not, there will be chances for a few great barbecue get-togethers. Try these five recipes that are a welcome change from store-bought potato salad or vegetable trays — just be sure to make plenty to share. 

Happy Fourth of July! 

Grilled sweet corn with chili-lime honey butter

From Iowa Girl Eats

It goes without saying that sweet corn is a sure sign of summer in Indiana, and no cookout is complete without it. 

Ingredients: 

  • 6 tbsp. salted butter
  • 1 tbsp. lime juice 
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • Dash cayenne pepper
  • 6 ears sweet corn, shucked 
  • Salt and lime wedges for serving 

Directions: 

In a small bowl, add butter, honey, lime juice, chili powder and cayenne pepper and mash with a fork until well combined. Refrigerate until ready to use. 

Preheat the grill to medium-high heat and add sweet corn, rotating occasionally until evenly cooked. While corn is hot, spread chili-lime honey butter, then serve with extra salt and lime for drizzling.

Avocado pasta salad

From Spend With Pennies

A cookout fan favorite, pasta salad, gets a major upgrade with avocado dressing. 

Ingredients: 

  • 8 oz. rotini or bow tie pasta
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, diced 
  • 8 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled 
  • 1 green onion, thinly sliced 
  • 2 tbsp. chopped cilantro 
  • 1 avocado, diced 
  • 1 tsp. lime juice

For the dressing: 

  • 1 ripe Avocado
  • ½ fresh lime, squeezed 
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro 
  • ½ tsp. cumin 
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ cup buttermilk 
  • Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions: 

  1. Place all dressing ingredients in blender and process until smooth. 
  2. For the salad, cook the pasta according to package directions. Drain and run under cold water. 
  3. Toss diced avocado with lime juice and combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Toss gently with dressing. Refrigerate one hour before serving. 
  4. Store refrigerated for up to two days. 

Hot dog bar 

From Catch My Party

When it comes to hot dogs, no two are made alike. Let your guests dress up their dogs however they choose by setting out mustard, barbecue sauce, guacamole or whatever spreads you think they’d love. 

Ingredients: 

  • Hot dogs, grilled according to package 
  • Buns, toasted if desired 
  • Condiments like ketchup, mustard, relish, guacamole, hot sauce, barbecue sauce, chopped onions, pickles, peppers and more 

Directions: 

Grill hot dogs according to package and toast buns, if desired. Set out condiments for guests. 

Garlic, bacon and beer macaroni and cheese 

From Erica’s Recipes

Three strong flavors converge for this macaroni and cheese to rule them all. 

Ingredients: 

  • 6 strips bacon, cooked, crumbled and divided
  • 4 tbsp. unsalted butter, divided 
  • 3 tbsp. all-purpose flour 
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 1½ tsp. fresh thyme leaves, divided 
  • 2 cups milk 
  • ¾ cup stout beer 
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt 
  • Pinch fresh cracked pepper
  • 2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese 
  • ½ cup Kaukauna-brand sharp cheddar cheese spread 
  • 8 oz. elbow macaroni 
  • ½ cup breadcrumbs 
  • Fresh thyme leaves for garnish 

Directions: 

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bring large pot of water to a boil. In a medium saucepan, heat 3 tablespoons butter with the flour over medium heat, whisking until bubbly. Cook for two minutes. Add garlic and 1 tablespoon of thyme. Cook for an additional minute. 
  2. Slowly whisk in the milk and beer. Stirring occasionally, heat a few minutes, but do not let it boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and add both cheeses, salt and pepper and cook, whisking until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in half of the bacon. 
  3. Cook the macaroni al dente according to package directions. Drain and add to cheese sauce. Transfer to a 2 quart baking dish. 
  4. In a small saucepan, melt the remaining tablespoon of butter. Add breadcrumbs, the remaining thyme and remaining bacon. Sprinkle over the macaroni and bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes until bubbly. 
  5. Serve garnished with thyme or a pinch of barbecue seasoning. 

Blueberry pie 

From Cosmo Cookie

There are usually sweet treats abound during Fourth of July celebrations, but a sweet, festive blueberry pie is never a bad bet. 

Ingredients: 

For the crust: 

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour 
  • 12 tbsp. butter, chilled and cut into pieces
  • 2 tbsp. heavy cream, chilled 
  • 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar, chilled 
  • 2 tbsp. ice water 

For the filling: 

  • 4 cups blueberries 
  • 2 tbsp. lime juice 
  • ¼ cup sugar 
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour 
  • 1 tbsp. cornstarch 
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon 
  • 1 tsp. vanilla 

 

For the assembly: 

  • 3 tbsp. butter 
  • 1 tbsp. heavy cream 

Directions: 

  1. For the crust: In a food processor, pulse the butter and flour until it resembles a coarse meal. With processor on, slowly add cream, vinegar and ice water until dough begins to stick. Press dough into a ball the transfer onto a lightly floured surface. Knead dough a few times until smooth. Flatten into a disk. Wrap disk in plastic wrap and refrigerate for one hour. 
  2. For the filling: Toss blueberries with lime juice, sugar, flour, cornstarch, cinnamon and vanilla in a bowl. Set aside. 
  3. For the pie: Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Set aside one-fourth of the pie dough. Roll the rest on a floured surface into an 11-inch circle, then flit into a 9-inch pie plate. Transfer filling into pastry bottom and scatter the three tablespoons of butter over fruit. Roll the remaining fourth of dough out onto floured surface and cut out star shapes for the top. Place on top of filling. Brush crust and cutouts with a teaspoon of cream. Bake until pastry is golden, for about an hour. Let cool for several hours before serving. 

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Follow digital producer Danielle Waldron on Twitter @DanielleWaldron
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