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We have all found that the great American grill is often featured in our holiday celebrations. Time has passed by so quickly. Now the 4th of July is upon us and the celebration is to be at your place this year. You may have been looking for grilling ideas for your 4th of July celebration. Friends and family may have given you several of the same standby ideas but, you want to change things up a bit. Having looked for ideas since Memorial Day, to find that perfect recipe or dish that says this is the ONE.
You can find some really great deals for great grills for the 4th of July celebration. Check with your favorite retailer such as Lowe’s, Home Depot or Ace Hardware to name a few.
Some Questions About Grilling For The Holidays
What do most people grill for the holidays?
That will depend upon what time of the year it is. During the summer months, there are more hamburgers and hot dogs grilled. Some may smoke a brisket or a pork shoulder for pulled pork.
At other times of the year, you will find at Thanksgiving and Christmas, some of the favorites on the grill are turkeys and hams. It truly depends upon what you desire to grill.
What Is The Best Grill For The Holidays?
That will depend upon what you are grilling and the flavor you want. For example, if you like smoky flavors, it will be difficult to get that flavor with a gas grill, using a charcoal or pellet grill will be the best option. On the other hand, if you need to have a large amount of meat cooked in a short amount of time, you will want to use a gas grill,
How large should my budget be?
When planning for your holiday meal, you will want to be able to purchase enough for all your guests. Do comparison shopping before you purchase anything, by going to the website of the major grocers in your area you should be able to find the best price for your needs.
Now that you know for certain that you will be hosting a 4th of July celebration, you need to decide how much the budget will be. Will there be cost-sharing for the celebration? Who is bringing what or are you paying for all of it? What will be the main item grilled? How many of the sides need to be grilled before the meal (corn on the cob). Now that you have a budget in mind, make a checklist of EVERYTHING, costs, items, food, beverages, games, first aid kits, kids, you get the idea. If it is going to be at your cookout then it needs to be on the list.
With the cost of everything going up, cost-sharing may be the best option. Cost-sharing is something that more and more people are doing as well, this helps everyone’s budget. By cost-sharing, you can all agree on a menu long before your event arrives. This will also allow you to expand your budget.
This allows you to get your main ingredients ahead of time. You will, by this time, have an approximate total of the number of people that will be there for the festivities. You should have a checklist to go by for the meats, side-dishes, place settings and any other items you may need. Someone needs to be in charge of the music, games and fireworks if they are allowed in your neighborhood.
Organize Your Event
By having your event well organized, you should be able to save some money. This will also give you the advantage of being able to have a number of events for all to enjoy. Organization can help you avoid last minute crises, for example, you may not have enough disposable plates or cutlery.
Since you have organized your event, go over your checklist. You may think you are Santa at this point, making a list and checking it twice, but it can save you a tremendous amount of stress, money and frustration.
The Main Event
The main event will be what has been grilled. For this holiday, there are so many options available to you, that making a decision may be difficult. It doesn’t have to be. What do your guests like and what do they not like. Being in charge of the grill, you may want to do some of your favorites, such as hamburgers and hot dogs.
Each of us has to make decisions as to what is to be grilled, based upon our experience and personal preference for grilled food. This year you may want to try something new. Something new may be sides and not meat. Some sides are absolutely, awesomely fantastic on the grill since it releases even more flavor. We will save that for later in this post.
If you are planning on brisket for your 4th of July event, you may want to smoke it a day ahead so you can spend time with friends and family. I know it tastes best when it just comes off the grill but, with the right planning, you can reheat it for a few moments on the grill and not lose any flavor. Reheat it just long enough to get it hot and take it off.
You may have decided to do ribs. You can start smoking them in the morning, to be ready for the early afternoon meal. Ribs are great anytime and for any occasion. Low and slow when smoking ribs bring about great flavor and tenderness. If you use barbeque sauce, don’t put it on until the last 5-10 minutes of cooking. This way your sauce isn’t burned but the outstanding flavor you have created is off the charts.
Depending upon what time you will be serving, you can actually have your pork butt smoked for an evening meal. It will be nice and tender with all the smoke flavor you want. You will have enough time for it to rest before you pull it. I normally do the pulling and make barbeque sauce available for anyone who wants sauce. Making my own barbeque sauce, while it make take 10 hours to prepare, adds a new dimension of flavor to the meal.
The Great American Grill Loves Chicken
Chicken is a favorite item to grill for the 4th of July of and for many holidays. Since chicken is easy to grill and is cost effective, it may become something that you grill on a regular basis. There are several different ways to grill chicken with great success. You can put sauce on it (5 minutes before it is done) or you can roast it with a rotisserie, great success is to be had either way.
Easy Sides For An Event
Most people stick to the sides they have known since childhood for grilling events. This year you may want to change them up a bit for the 4th of July. One of my favorite sides is jalapeno peppers stuffed with cream cheese that is prepared on the grill.
This is how I do them:
- wash the jalapenos
- split lengthwise
- remove the seeds(spoon works best)
- fill with cream cheese(cheddar) or the cheese of your choice
- preheat the grill plate to about 400F
- place jalapenos on grill plate
- allow the cheese to melt
- blister your peppers in the process
- remove from grill.
One thing I have found to help when grilling main ingredients or sides is the use of olive oil on the grates or some of the vegetables like zucchini or squash.
The most important thing to remember when you are grilling your sides is that imagination will lead you to greater inspiration. You will find that as you explore different ideas that different flavors will come to mind for exhilarating flavor and dishes.
Schedule Events Using The Great American Grill While Waiting
This time of the year people plan celebrations commemorating the founding of the United States of America with our Declaration of Independence. There may be some people may show up early to socialize or to help with setting things up for the day.
Some of the things you will want to have organized are:
- when to start the grill
- what time guests are to arrive
- side-dishes to prepare or will be brought
- place settings and cutlery
- fireworks if allowed
By having your celebration organized, you will cut down on the amount of lost time with your family and friends. You will also be using your checklist to make sure that you have everything covered. If you find that you have missed something then you still have time to correct it and still have a great day.
Plan For The Kids With The Great American Grill
All too often, kids are forgotten about and will be running underfoot at the wrong time. I have found that if you have some fun activities planned for them then everyone has a great time.
Some of the games I have found the games most enjoyed by kids are:
- water gun(if allowed)
- water balloons (if allowed)
- backyard bowling
- pool if available
By using your imagination, you will find a variety of games that all can enjoy. You may find they are having more fun than you. It will be interesting to see who has the most fun when everyone gets involved. You will be creating memories that will last a lifetime.
Cleanup The Great American Grill Afterwards
Cleanup is always something that is dreaded by everyone who hosts an event. This can be easily taken care of during the course of your event. For some of the smaller messes, have several trash cans available to everyone to put their plastic cups in as well as the disposable plates and cutlery.
If you don’t have a number of trash cans available, use a wire hanger and attach it to your porch railing to put your trash bag on. This allows your guests to put their trash in the bag to cut down with having to pick up so much after your celebration. It is another quick easy way to have your guests help with the cleanup, without them knowing they are doing so.
The Great American Grill Roundup
Let’s do a roundup of what we have gone over in this post. We have taken a look at your budget, finding ways to get the most from the money that is available. In fact, some of your guests may have contributed some money for a better celebration or they may have volunteered time with the setup or cleanup for a better event.
You have take the step of making a plan for organizing your event, being certain to follow a checklist to keep from overlooking anything that may be important for your event. By taking the time to make a checklist, you have reduced the risk of overlooking an important part of your event.
You took a look at the budget so you could decide what the best foods to prepare would be. Your selections are sure to be tasty, fun and enjoyed by all. You kept to your budget and found ways to stretch your money further than expected.
You set up a schedule of events to make the time pass faster, especially for the kids. With the help of others, you have successfully had the best possible event for everyone. Now that you have your plan in place, you wonder how will I be able to duplicate this event for my next celebration. Just remember that when you plan, your events are more successful.
The Great American Grill Uses Easy Recipes
This video gives some great ideas on what you can grill for your sides. You can explore different places like YouTube for recipes or the manufacturer may have recipes with the owner’s manual. Check these out to see if they work for you.
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