Ideas for a Kosher BBQ on the 4th of July

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Summer… and grilling is easy. Turns out, there’s so much more to a barbecue than preparing delicious meals on the grill.

“When I barbecue, it’s always more jazz than a three-act play to me,” chef Jeff Frymer told the Journal. Frymer, a certified marriage and family therapist in private practice and certified Inner Bonding facilitator, spends his free time as a guest chef on a catamaran.

For a recent family barbecue, tri-tip pre-seasoned Frymer with salt and pepper. Then he took it out of the fridge 20 minutes before cooking it. He also drizzled the salmon with olive oil, then added salt, pepper, paprika, chopped fresh garlic, minced red onion and fresh thyme. While the meat went straight to the grill, he would wrap the salmon in foil (skin side down) before putting it on the heat.

Cooking times, Frymer said, vary because everyone’s grill is a little different. “I pretty much go by smell and check for doneness often.”

Frymer also has a “tried and true technique” for cooking corn on the cob. After removing the husks and silks, Frymer butters and seasons the cobs. He then wraps them in washed envelopes and covers them with foil.

“Turn/roll the corn often over well-prepared coals/wood or gas,” he said. “Not too much flame or it will burn, unless that’s the result you want to taste.”

Be careful when removing foil so you don’t scald yourself from the steam.

“The corn comes out amazing,” Frymer said. “It’s juicy and crunchy to bite with just a hint of smoky, charred flavor.”

Ali Rosen, cookbook author and Emmy and James Beard Award-nominated host of “Potluck with Ali Rosen,” believes you don’t have to put cheese on a burger to be tasty.

“For the perfect Jewish barbecue, you really need a sauce that makes you forget that any other grilled food exists.”
–Ali Rosen

“For the perfect Jewish barbecue, you really need a sauce that makes you forget that any other grilled food exists.”

Rosen’s Grilled Beef Ginger Sauce only has four ingredients, but it gets the job done. This sauce comes with lots of different proteins, but goes especially well with steak. Once you’re done preparing your steak, you can also pair it with Rosen’s Plum and Cucumber Salad.

Ali Rosen’s grilled beef with ginger sauce. Photo credit: Noah Fecks

Grilled Beef with Ginger Sauce

For 4 to 8 people

For 4 to 8 people
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh ginger
2 cups finely chopped green onions
2 tablespoons of soy sauce
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
Pinch of salt
4 lb sirloin steak
1/4 cup vegetable or canola oil

Prepare the sauce: Combine the ginger, green onions, soy sauce, vinegar and olive oil. Set aside (I think the sauce gets better the longer it sits, but at least let it sit while you cook the steak so it has time to settle). Then prepare the steak. Generously salt the steak on both sides.

Light your grill and let it heat up. Rub the oil on both sides of the steak. Place the steak on the grill and cook for 5-8 minutes, depending on the size of your steaks and desired doneness. You’ll want to flip the steak every 30 seconds or so to make sure it cooks evenly – it’ll cook better this way rather than letting it only flip once. Remove the steak and let it rest for at least 5 minutes. Cut the fat into slices, then cut the steak lengthwise into ¼-inch pieces. Add the sauce on top and serve.

Plum and cucumber salad

Servings: 8 to 10 people

This recipe is perfect for a Jewish BBQ because you get all the intense flavor without any restrictions on dietary restrictions. And it only takes 10 minutes to do

4-5 large ripe plums, diced
(about 4 cups)

2 large English cucumbers, sliced
1/4 inch discs (about 4 cups)

3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
(about 2-3 limes)

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro

1/2 tbsp dried chili flakes

Pinch of salt

Mix all the ingredients and serve.

Note: This dish is spicy as is, so if you want it less, you can easily halve the amount of chili flakes. Remember: you can’t remove the spices, so sometimes it’s good to start with half and then you can always add more.

Substitutions: This dish is also excellent with peaches. This way you can use the flavor combination all year round. Simply replace the same amount of peaches with plums and you’re ready to have a summer version of the same dish.

Spicy grilled pineapple

Makes 6 slices of pineapple

For a great, unexpected dessert, try Rosen’s Spicy Grilled Pineapple.

“It takes a fruit that is often just the topping of a fruit salad and turns it into something exciting and different,” Rosen said. “Grilled pineapple is a delight on its own, but adding some spicy flavors to it will make it unforgettable.”

1 whole pineapple
1/8 teaspoon chili powder or cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

Cut the pineapple: cut the top, bottom and sides, then core the middle (you can also leave the heart). Cut the pineapple into 1-inch-thick rounds. In a bowl, combine the chili powder, sugar and ginger. Sprinkle the chili mixture over the pineapple slices.

Light your grill and make sure it has completely reached full heat. Turn on your range hood or fan before cooking the pineapple slices because once they hit the pan they will smoke a little. Cook the pineapple slices on one side for 2 minutes, without moving them, until the slices are golden brown. Flip to the other side and repeat. Cool on a wire rack, letting the juices drain, before serving.

No-Bake Vegan Cheesecake from Michael Tanenbaum. Photo credit: Michael Tanenbaum

Delicious no-bake vegan cheesecake

“Sharing food is a wonderful way to spend a vacation,” said Consciously Kosher’s Michael Tanenbaum. “It allows us to expand our palette of shapes, textures, flavors, aromas, colors and sounds that our foods come in.”

Tanenbaum founded Consciously Kosher to help busy people in the kosher food community with limited time and budget make healthier food purchasing decisions.

Her Raw Vegan Cheesecake is a wonderfully flavorful alternative to real dairy and the perfect way to top off any summer meal.

Crust:
3 pitted Medjool dates
1/2 cup organic pecans and/or walnuts
1/2 cup almond flour (not almond flour)
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1 tablespoon cinnamon (we use Ceylon
cinnamon)
Pinch of salt

Filling:
2 cups soaked cashews
1 cup coconut milk
1/3 cup maple syrup
1/4 cup coconut oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup fresh blueberries (plus an extra cup of blueberries for garnish)

Crust: Place all ingredients in a food processor and blend on high power for about 30 seconds. Pour into an 8 inch round pan. Put in the freezer for a few minutes while you prepare the filling.

Filling: Soak the cashews (overnight if possible, or for at least 2 hours); drain and rinse. Add all topping ingredients to a high speed blender and blend on high speed for 30-45 seconds.

Remove the crust from the freezer. Pour 2/3 of the filling mixture over the crust. Return to freezer for 30-45 minutes or until hardened.

Add a cup of blueberries to the remaining 1/3 of the topping mixture and stir over high heat for 15-20 seconds.

When the first layer hardens, take out of the freezer and pour the second layer on top. Put back in the freezer for at least 30-45 minutes. Remove from freezer and garnish with fresh blueberries. Thaw a few minutes before serving.

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