Celebrating Summer

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It’s that time again — cookouts, picnics, family reunions and backyard parties are happening all over the country. Grocery carts are getting filled with hot dogs, fresh fruit and condiments galore, all in anticipation of some outdoor fun.

Looking for some inspiration for a get-together? Look no further than time-tested and always versatile potato salad. There are many variations of this classic side, from mayonnaise-based dressings to zesty vinaigrettes. But it’s the dish’s delicious “accessories” that make it a crowd pleaser.

Black olives are a popular addition to American potato salad. Known for their versatility, black olives are the perfect accessory to potato salad, adding a subtle, savory flavor to this party staple. And here’s something you might not know — 95 percent of the nation’s black and green ripe olives are grown on family farms in California, making them a true all-American ingredient.

Here’s an easy recipe for your next gathering. While red, yellow and purple potatoes provide the ideal canvas, it’s the olives that make this potato salad a winner. For more recipe ideas, visit www.calolive.org.

Red, White and Blue Potato Salad

Makes 4 servings

1/2 pound red potatoes, diced

1/2 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, diced

1/4 pound purple potatoes, diced

2/3 cup California Ripe Olives, halved

1/3 cup green onions, chopped

1/3 cup celery, diced

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons capers, drained

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 pinch freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons flat-leaf parsley, chopped

In large pot, boil water and potatoes. Cook until tender, drain and cool to room temperature. Combine potatoes, olives, green onions and celery in a large mixing bowl and set aside. In medium bowl, whisk together red wine vinegar, mustard and capers. Gradually whisk in olive oil, and then season with salt, pepper and parsley. Pour dressing over potato mixture and toss until evenly coated.

Source: California Olive Committee

Fiery flavor for grilling favorites

Summer provides the perfect excuse to dust off the grill and add some sparks to a traditional backyard barbecue menu. This year, celebrate the best of the season with friends and family by serving up some classic grill-friendly dishes with a zesty twist.

Summertime Menu Planning

Here are a few dishes that will add a flavorful kick to any table spread:

• No barbecue party menu is complete without a summer potato salad dish. Mix up a dish with red potatoes, green beans, olive oil, lemon juice, mustard and cheeses. Spice up this American classic with a few dashes of chipotle pepper sauce.

• When it comes to summer fare, baked beans are a must. Add some extra flavor to your regular baked bean dish this year by adding bacon, onion and chipotle pepper sauce. While baked beans may be a standard summertime dish, the combination of sweet and smoky with the added kick of pepper sauce is anything but average.

• To add some more flavor to your table, be sure to serve sliders with chipotle ketchup. These bite-sized burgers boast bold flavors of grilled ground beef, chopped scallions and Tabasco brand Chipotle Pepper Sauce. With each serving smothered in Colby Jack cheese and topped with smoky chipotle ketchup sauce, these sliders are a sure-fire way to spice up any grill master’s menu.

• For dessert, consider grilling some seasonal fruits. Toss some slices of pineapple, peaches, apples or even mangos on the grill, then serve over ice cream for a refreshing finishing touch to the meal.

For more seasonal recipes with a kick, visit www.TABASCO.com.

Sliders with Chipotle Ketchup

Makes: 4 servings

Chipotle Ketchup:

1/2 cup ketchup

1 tablespoon Tabasco brand Chipotle Pepper Sauce

Sliders:

1 pound ground beef

1/4 cup chopped scallions

3 tablespoons Tabasco brand Chipotle Pepper Sauce

1/2 teaspoon salt

8 small rolls, about 2-inches round

2 slices Colby Jack cheese

Green leaf lettuce

In small bowl, combine ketchup and pepper sauce; set aside.

Preheat grill to high. Meanwhile, combine ground beef, scallions, pepper sauce and salt in bowl; mix well. Shape mixture into eight 2-inch round burgers.

Grill burgers about 5 minutes, or to desired doneness, turning once. Cut each cheese slice into 4 pieces. Top burgers with cheese; cook 1 minute longer or until cheese is melted.

To serve, cut each roll horizontally in half. Place leaf lettuce and cooked burger on roll. Serve with chipotle ketchup.

Source: Tabasco

Bold recipes for entertaining

If you’d like to experience some exciting world flavors without leaving home or eating out, these recipes should be on your menu. Chipotle Chicken Mango Salad and

3 Pepper Colby Jack Cheese Dip will take your taste buds on a flavor adventure in your very own home.

Whether you’re entertaining guests or making a weekday meal for your family, these recipes use the intense, sweet, savory and spicy flavors from the new, globally inspired Boar’s Head Bold product line to bring the perfect amount of flair to any dish.

Boar’s Head Bold features Jerk Turkey Breast inspired by Jamaica, Chipotle Chicken Breast influenced from Mexico’s Baja peninsula, 3 Pepper Colby Jack Cheese inspired from Brazil, and Chipotle Gouda infusing the flavors of Veracruz, Mexico.

Get more recipes with bold flavor at www.boarshead.com.

Chipotle Chicken Mango Salad

Servings: 2 as main dish salad, 4 as side salad

4 cups iceberg lettuce, shredded

6 ounces Boar’s Head Chipotle Chicken, sliced 1/4-inch thick and diced

6 ounces Boar’s Head Monterey Jack Cheese with Jalapeño, sliced 1/4-inch thick and diced

1 cup mango, diced

1/2 cup mango chutney with jalapeños

1/2 cup mayonnaise

1/2 cup sour cream

1 tablespoon lemon juice, fresh

1/2 cup almonds, sliced

Toss lettuce, chicken, cheese and mango in bowl; set aside.

In separate bowl, whisk together mango chutney, mayonnaise, sour cream and lemon juice to make salad dressing.

Toss chicken salad with dressing. Garnish with sliced almonds and serve.

3 Pepper Colby Jack Cheese Dip

Servings: Makes 3 cups

1 cup Boar’s Head 3 Pepper Colby Jack Cheese, shredded

1 cup Boar’s Head Chipotle Gouda, shredded

1 cup mayonnaise

4 ounces cream cheese, softened

8 scallions, finely chopped

8 slices Boar’s Head Bacon, prepared crispy to package directions and chopped into small pieces

Mix cheeses, mayonnaise, cream cheese and scallions together in bowl.

Place in an oven safe baking dish and cook for 15 to 20 minutes at 350 degrees, until warmed through and cheese is melted. Stir before serving and garnish with bacon.

Source: Boar’s Head

Time-saving tips

Warm weather means time to slow down, relax and enjoy time with friends and family. But with endless opportunities to enjoy the season - from picnics and baseball games to days at the beach - it’s easy to run out of time and energy to prepare a delicious family meal. How, then, do you bring the family back to the table? One easy way to reclaim precious time is to infuse your menu with palate-pleasing, leftover-friendly staples like pulled pork.

Easily repurposed throughout the week, pulled pork can be cooked once and incorporated in a variety of dishes your family will love. For example, this Chili Rub Pulled Pork recipe can be prepared in the slow cooker, yielding a flavorful meal that’s ready to eat when you return home from an active day. Additionally, the leftovers can be enjoyed throughout the week in a number of different ways. Whether topping creative salads or savory pizzas, filling enchiladas or adding new flavor to baked potatoes, pulled pork is a perfect fit for the laid-back lifestyle that the season is known for.

For more pulled pork tips and recipes, visit www.PorkBeInspired.com.

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Family Features photo

Pulled pork made in a slow cooker.

Chili Rub Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Preparation time: 10 minutes; cooking time: 5-1/4 to 8-1/4 hours. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

1, 3-pound boneless pork shoulder or sirloin roast

2 tablespoons chili powder

1-1/2 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoon cayenne powder

1 tablespoon canola oil or other neutral-flavored oil

1/2 cup chicken broth

Line 9-inch-by-13-inch baking pan with foil and place pork in pan.

In small bowl, combine chili powder, salt and cayenne. Rub mixture over all sides of meat, pressing to adhere (if the meat is tied together with twine or netting, just rub the seasoning right over it). Set aside.

In large skillet over medium-high heat, warm oil. Add pork and brown on all sides, 6 to 8 minutes. Transfer meat to slow cooker.

Add broth to skillet, scraping up any browned bits, and then add broth to slow cooker. Cover and cook until pork is very tender, 6 to 8 hours on low or 4 to 5 hours on high.

Transfer meat to cutting board and let rest 10 to 15 minutes. Use two forks to shred meat into bite-sized pieces. Moisten and season with cooking juices to taste.

Serving suggestions

This recipe is only mildly spiced, so if you like things with a kick, try adding more cayenne to the rub or add some of your favorite hot sauce to the finished, shredded meat. Use the pork to make a traditional pulled pork sandwich, with barbecue sauce and slaw, enjoy it in your favorite chili recipe, or on top of a Tex Mex Caesar salad.

Source: National Pork Board

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