When I’m planning a trip somewhere, I do my research. I am a list maker from way back and I get joy from checking things off of one. I was thinking of taking a trip to Kitty Hawk in NC. Mary Ashley and I do these “Discovery Days” where we take a city in our area and discover all there is to know about it. Fun, and she shares stuff. We tight.
OK, so I found this restaurant people talk about called The Good Life there. Knocking around that website, I see that they cater. They are custom caterers, meaning they’ll do exactly what you want. Even your favorite FAMILY recipes. That idea is so cool to me! I checked the menus they had online and found one that seemed really delicious for a beach side barbecue.
And then I thought…I can do that!
Here’s the plan. I’ve tested most recipes, and the rest I will end up testing before summer so I can have everything just right!
CHEESE AND CRACKER ARRAY
So for my cheese tray I’ll use a nice herbed goat cheese log from Montchevre. I got mine at Wal-Mart of all places! To go with the soft goat cheese, I’d also choose a sharp cheddar from Ashe County. Pricey perhaps, but worth it. Also, I’d include this Chocolate Lab from Asheville’s Looking Glass Creamery that uses a local beer and is rubbed with French Broad Chocolate companies own cocoa nibs. Finally, I’d use a harder cheese from the NC dairy farm Three Graces Dairy like the Goldie, which is raw aged cow’s milk cheese much like gouda. The crackers have to be Root & Branches Seeded Wheat Flatbreads.
HUMMUS AND PITA POINTS
This hummus is life. It just is. It’s a recipe I got out of my New York Times Cookbook, meaning to monkey with it. No need, perfect as written.
- 1 (15 ounce) cans chickpeas, drained
- 5 tablespoons chicken broth
- 3/4 cup tahini
- 1/2-3/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
- 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- Put chickpeas in food processor and add broth, tahini and lemon juice to taste. Blend until smooth. Add salt if needed. Add garlic and pulse to mix.
- Spoon hummus into wide, shallow serving dish. Sprinkle with parsley and drizzle with olive oil. Serve with pita chips.
I’ve tried a million recipes, but you know what? The simplest one is the best one. It reminds me of those my mom used to make and she makes the best, that’s that. So, here’s my recipe for that: Deviled Eggs
NC PULLED PORK BARBECUE
There are better methods I’m sure. But, I’m not great on the grill. It’s on my to do list, so for now, I’d cook the shoulder in a large crockpot with sauce on low for 8 hours, shred and serve with leftover sauce. Done and done. The trick is in the delicious sauce! So for that you need to use: Spicy Barbecue Sauce.
I’m not making these when I can buy something sweetish and soft in the store. Try these:
Purists may not like this idea, but this slaw that I made from Blue Apron is my favorite. And that’s what I’d have with my BBQ sandwiches. If that offends you, the next best thing is to go to Lincoln Seafood and pick up some of their slaw. It’s the best around here.
CREAMY CONE CABBAGE AND RED ONION SLAW
- 1 head cone cabbage, thinly sliced ( or 1/4 head of cabbage)
- 1 small red onion, sliced thinly
- 1/4 cup Mexican crema or 1/4 cup sour cream
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 lime, cut into 4 wedges
- salt and pepper
- In medium bowl, combine cabbage, crema, sugar, juice of 3 limes and as many of the red onion slices you’d like.
- Toss to combine, then season with salt and pepper.
- Allow to sit 10 minutes before eating.
BBQ CHICKEN PIECES
I know this sounds like a lot of ingredients, but you have most of it right in your pantry. Very flavorful!
FOIL BAKED BARBECUED CHICKEN
- 3 lbs chicken, cut up
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/3 cup catsup
- 1/3 cup vinegar
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 4 tablespoons butter, melted
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons dry mustard
- Salt and pepper chicken. Combine all remaining ingredients. Dip chicken into this. Seal tightly with foil. Bake covered for 45 minutes at 400. Uncover and bake 15 more minutes, basting with remaining sauce.
Sounds easy, right? Wrong. Green beans are easily one of the most bland vegetables you can eat. You have to doctor them up to make them palatable.
COUNTRY GREEN BEANS
- 2 (14 1/2 ounce) cans green beans
- 1/4 cup chopped onion
- 1/4 cup chopped cooked ham
- 1/4 cup butter or 1/4 cup margarine
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 garlic clove ( minced)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- Combine all ingredients in saucepan. Cover and simmer 15-20 minutes.