3 Memorial Day BBQ Must-Haves
Along with red, white, and blue, every Memorial Day backyard barbecue needs a few standout recipes. So we’ve pulled out three of our favorites for you: a fun-to-make Grilled Pizza, a colorful Grilled Halibut, and a refreshing Orange Granita.
Take your barbecue up a notch with something unexpected—our easy grilled pizza. If you make the dough ahead of time and have all of your ingredients chopped and ready to go, all you’ll have to do on BBQ day is assemble and grill the pizza. If you’re making individual pizzas, your friends can top and grill their own!
Makes one 12-inch pizza or four individual pizzas
2 1/2 teaspoons active dry yeast
2 cups warm water
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup semolina flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tablespoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1 1/2 cups prepared tomato sauce
2 cups grated mozzarella
1/4 cup sautéed diced onions
2 tablespoons fresh basil, rolled and sliced thin
Combine yeast and water in a medium mixing bowl and stir to dissolve. Let the mixture sit until a thick foam forms.
Add the flours and salt to the yeast and stir by hand, or mix on medium speed in an electric mixer, using the dough hook attachment, until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes.
Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let rest at room temperature until doubled in size, about 1 1⁄2 hours. Gently fold dough over and let it rise for another 45 minutes. The dough is ready for use now or can be covered and refrigerated for up to 2 days.
Preheat a gas grill to high. If using a charcoal grill, build a fire and let it burn down until the coals are glowing red with a moderate coating of white ash. Spread the coals in an even bed. Clean the cooking grate.
Roll or stretch the dough into a 12-inch round. If preparing individual pizzas, divide dough into four pieces and stretch into rounds. Lay the dough round(s) on a lightly floured surface.
Brush olive oil over the entire dough round(s). Place dough directly on grill with the oiled side face-down.
Brush dough with remaining olive oil. Grill until dough is marked and puffs slightly, 3 to 4 minutes. Flip over with tongs and top with tomato sauce, cheese, and onions. Cover grill.
Cook until crust is golden and cheese is melted, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove pizza from grill and sprinkle with basil.
Source: The CIA Grilling cookbook
Grilled Halibut with Roasted Red and Yellow Pepper Salad
While you’re cooking for your barbecue, consider making a double or triple batch of our pepper salad to have on hand. The peppers are a great addition to omelets, salads, sandwiches, stews, and soups.
Makes 8 servings
2 red bell peppers, or 1 cup of prepared roasted peppers
2 yellow bell peppers, or 1 cup of prepared roasted peppers
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 onion, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons garlic, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons capers, chopped
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/8 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
3 pounds Alaskan/Pacific halibut fillet
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Rub the peppers with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and roast them in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the skins start to fall off. Place the peppers in a bowl, cover with a piece of plastic wrap, and allow them to steam for 5 minutes.
Peel the skin off the peppers and remove the stems and seeds. Slice the peppers into thin strips.
Heat the remaining olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until lightly caramelized, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until aromatic, about 30 seconds.
Add the capers, vinegar, cumin, red pepper flakes, and coriander. Season with about 1/4 teaspoon salt and a pinch of black pepper. Add the onion mixture to the peppers and keep warm.
Preheat a grill to medium-high. Cut the halibut into eight 6-ounce portions and season with salt and pepper. Grill the halibut until just cooked through, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Serve each portion with 1/4 cup of the roasted pepper salad.
Source: The CIA Vegetables cookbook
Serve this refreshing citrus granita in a simple glass dish or bowl with a few crispy cookies and some citrus zest garnish.
Makes 4 to 6 servings
2 cups freshly squeezed orange juice
3⁄4 cup white wine
3 tablespoons Grand Marnier or other orange-flavored liqueur
1⁄4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
Combine all ingredients in a non-reactive saucepan and warm over low heat just until the sugar dissolves, about 4 minutes. Set the saucepan in a large bowl of ice water and stir occasionally until the mixture is cold.
Pour the mixture into a shallow metal or glass container and place it in the freezer. Stir the mixture with a small spoon or fork once every hour until it is completely frozen, 2 to 3 hours. The granita will have a very granular consistency.
With a sturdy serving spoon, scrape out the granita into chilled serving bowls or wine glasses.
Source: The CIA Baking at Home cookbook