As I look outside at my thermometer hovering just above 91 degrees, something tells me it’s that time of year! BBQ/POOL SEASON! Every year we get together with friends and family to celebrate and experience these interesting Arizona summers. No matter what to occasion is, loved ones birthday, surprise party, Graduation, fourth of July, a backyard wedding, They all have one thing in common, the smell of charred food on an open flame, or what we like to call “Arizona BBQ”.
When Planning your Summer Cook out don’t forget the side dishes. Often over looked. Grilled vegetables are a family favorite. Slice them so they lay flat in your grill basket. I like to toss the vegetables in olive oil balsamic vinegar, fresh herbs, salt and pepper. Salads and dips made with mayo should be put in a bowl or platter and placed in a larger bowl of ice to make sure they are cold and stay safe to eat. Cold food should be less than 44 degrees at all times.
Let’s talk protien! Fish, hot and fast! Use the grill basket Don’t overcook it. Steak, sear the outsides then reduce the heat and finish cooking to desired internal temp. Rare is 125 degrees. Resist the urge to poke or cut into it. Let is rest to seal in the juices. Chicken on the bone is best par cooked then grilled. You can boil it then grill it with the skin on. Add the sauce when it is nearly finished so it will caramelize but not burn. Boneless breast of chicken doesn’t take long. I recommend marinating them before grilling. Kabobs are a great idea for short cooking time but do take longer to prep.
If you want to impress your friends just a little bit more slow roast a pork shoulder. This is a less tender less expensive cut of meat with enough fat to make it so juicy. It needs to cook low and slow. A great mix of cayenne pepper, paprika, brown sugar, black pepper, salt, garlic powder and onion powder make a great crust. Just coat pork with rub, wrap in foil and place on the grill on low for about 3-5 hours. Or in your smoker. (follow recommended cooking times) When finished, remove and shred with fork and toss with your favorite sauce. Makes great pulled pork sandwich with the right bun on a taco with tortias and some condiments.
And what’s an Arizona summer bbq without the addition of ice cold refreshing beverage? You can always take it up a notch by putting a twist on a classic favorite. My Lavender Arnold Palmers are perfect for those hot summer days by the pool. A 50/50 ratio of lemonade to ice tea with the addition of a little lavender spring and some lemon wheel garnish really hits the spot! Make it tipsy with some vodka or rum.
Remember, no matter what the occasion, as long as there is a pool near by, the grill heating up, and an ice cold glass within reach, Arizona BBQ’s are the perfect remedy to bring together friends and family of all kinds! If you don’t want to do it yourself call us. I am always here for any questions or helpful hints. We have Great menus for Hawaiian Luaus, Caribbean themes, Fiestas, Ho-downs, and Traditional Arizona BBQS.
Executive Chef Adam Zimnisky