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Grilled Paiche Tacos with Pickled Veggies

There are not many things I love more than having friends over for a backyard barbecue. The simplicity of backyard gatherings puts everyone at ease – even me, the host. The menu doesn’t have to be complicated. In fact, letting seasonal superstars like berries, tomatoes and stone fruit shine along side a fillet of fish or a steak and green salad is my only requirement.

Make Some, Buy Some

Backyard barbecues are casual by nature, so don’t spend hours cooking in preparation. However, it would be a shame not to get a little adventurous and try grilling a less common cut of meat or mixing a new cocktail. The solution is to get the best of both worlds.

Find time-saving shortcuts like ready-to-cook frozen patties (Hilary’s Eat Well Veggie Burgers are a winner) or grill-ready kabobs at our meat and seafood counters. Also, our butchers will grind, season, cube and filet, so you can spend less time in the kitchen and more time with people you love. Or make the prepared foods department your secret weapon for salads and sides.

Your New Favorite Recipe

Now what should you make? Something delicious. Here are a few recipes that hit the mark.

  • Grilled Paiche Tacos with Pickled Veggies. Paiche (pronounced PIE-chay) is a deliciously thick and meaty, lean fish, which grills up great in a grill basket or foil.
  • Chicken Burgers with Corn Relish. Flavorful chicken burgers and a classic Southern-style corn relish ramp up your regular cookout fare. (Tip: the relish makes a great side dish too.)
  • Marinated Summer Squash Grilling Packs. With this recipe for tender marinated squash you can minimize the stress of hosting by doing a little prep ahead of time.
  • Grilled Potato Salad. Give your summer potato salad a new twist by grilling precooked potatoes for a crisp texture and smoky flavor. Greek yogurt gives the salad its familiar creaminess with a delicious tang.
  • Strawberry Smash Parfait. This light and delicious parfait is perfect for a summertime dessert on the patio. You can even make the cashew cream a day or two in advance and keep refrigerated. (Harried hosts rejoice!)
  • Gluten-Free Grilled Stone Fruit Trifle. When you want to make the most of summer grilling, grill your dinner and dessert too like in this scrumptious treat.

Get Adventurous

We’re all looking for that little something that wows, so here are a few simple tricks that can elevate your backyard bash from burgers and beers to burgers, beers and boom!

  • Foil. It can be your best buddy when you’re cooking over a grill. Before guests arrive, prepare individually portioned meal packets of parchment paper wrapped in foil, like in this recipe for Marinated Summer Squash Grilling Packs. Assemble and season to taste:
  • Halibut fillet + diced tomatoes + olives + capers + chopped shallot
  • Portobello mushroom cap + diced garlic + chile flakes + extra-virgin olive oil
  • Sliced sausage + bell peppers + onions
  • Carrot sticks + honey mustard + extra-virgin olive oil
  • Peaches + brown sugar + cinnamon
  • Put a lemon on it. Grilling halved citrus makes it easy to squeeze over freshly grilled meats and veggies for extra flavor, or to give a smoky kick to your favorite cocktail. Oh, yeah!
  • Secret sauce. Serve grilled items with a sauce you created yourself. Think: herbaceous chimichurri, zingy pesto, spicy peanut or creamy avocado. Search for more sauce inspiration on our website.

Cool Comfort

Tell the pests to bug off and keep sunburns at bay by having insect repellent and sunscreen nearby. When everything is easily accessible, your guests (and you) can sit back and relax.

Share your backyard barbecue tips in the comments section below. What’s on your essentials list?