Summer is finally here, and the time to celebrate America’s birthday with good food, friends, family, and fireworks is upon us. To most Washingtonians July 4th means our beautiful and pristine outdoors is finally open for BBQ season. The patios, parks, and gardens of Western Washington become the bright and balmy living room, kitchen, and dining room for many a patriotic American.
However as much as we enjoy celebrating the 4th of July, preparing for the occasion may leave many a Seattlite to rely on the store bought treats appearing at your typical neighborhood Independence Day celebrations. So with that in mind – and spatula in hand – here are our 9 patriotic and unique recipes to try and to stand out this Fourth of July, selected by the Jaguar Land Rover staff:
1.) Apple-Glazed Barbecued Baby Back Ribs
- ACTIVE: 30 MIN
- TOTAL TIME: 4 HR 30 MIN
- SERVINGS: 4
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 4 teaspoons garlic salt
- 4 teaspoons pure ancho chile powder
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
- 1/2 cup apple cider
- 1/4 cup apple jelly, melted
- 1/4 cup honey
- 2 racks baby back ribs (about 4 pounds total)
- 1 cup prepared barbecue sauce
- Preheat the oven to 250°. In a bowl, mix 1/4 cup of the sugar with the garlic salt, chile powder, salt, black pepper, celery salt, cayenne, cinnamon and white pepper. Transfer 1 tablespoon of the spice mix to a medium bowl and whisk in the cider, apple jelly, honey and the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar.
- Pull the membrane off the underside of each rib rack using a towel to grasp the corner. On a rimmed baking sheet, rub the ribs with the remaining spice mix; bake, meaty side up, for 2 1/2 hours. Pour the cider mixture over the ribs and turn to coat. Tightly cover with foil and bake for 1 hour.
- Light a grill. Uncover the ribs and brush with the barbecue sauce; grill over moderate heat, turning and brushing, until glazed, 15 minutes. Let rest for 10 minutes, then cut between the bones and serve.
A bold red is a great choice for ribs, and Syrah’s sweet spice is delicious with this apple glaze. Try one from Washington state.
2.) Bacon Burgers on Brioche Buns
- TOTAL TIME: 40 MIN
- SERVINGS: 8
- 2 medium red onions, thinly sliced
- 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 8 slices of thick-cut bacon (12 ounces)
- 3 pounds mixed ground chuck and ground sirloin
- 12 ounces brie, sliced
- 8 brioche burger buns, split
- Preheat the oven to 400°. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the onions with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and roast until softened, about 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the lemon juice. Gradually whisk in the remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
- In a large skillet, cook the bacon over moderately high heat until crisp. Drain on paper towels and break each strip in half.
- Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Form the ground meat into eight patties. Season generously with salt and pepper and brush with olive oil. Grill over moderately high heat until well-browned on the bottom, 5 minutes. Flip the burgers, mound the brie on top and grill for 4 minutes longer, until the cheese is slightly melted and the burgers are medium-rare.
- Spread the lemon mayonnaise on the cut sides of the buns; set the burgers on the bottoms and top with the bacon and onions. Close the burgers and serve right away.
3.) Crosshatch Hot Dogs on Grilled Croissants
- TOTAL TIME: 30 MIN
- SERVINGS: 4
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon honey
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon sherry vinegar
- 6 cups finely shredded green cabbage (from 1/2 small head)
- 3 fresh red chiles such as Fresno, seeded and thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 4 croissants, split but still attached on one side
- 4 large hot dogs
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 1 large garlic clove, minced
- In a large bowl, stir the honey with the sherry vinegar until the honey is dissolved. Add the shredded cabbage and red chiles, season with salt and toss. Let stand until the cabbage is slightly softened, tossing a few times, about 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, blend the butter and the mustard. Gently spread the cut sides of the croissants with the butter.
- Light a grill. Thread each hot dog lengthwise onto a thick metal or wooden skewer. With a small, sharp knife, make cuts at an angle in 3 rows down each hot dog, about 1/2 inch apart, cutting partway into the hot dog. The cuts should look like rounded half circles. Lightly run the knife down the center of the cuts to halve the half circles.
- On a large plate, mix the ketchup with the soy sauce, oil and garlic. Turn to coat each hot dog with the mixture.
- Grill the croissants over high heat, cut side down, until toasted, about 30 seconds. Turn and grill the other side for about 10 seconds. Grill the hot dogs over high heat all over, until nicely charred and the cuts open up, about 2 minutes total; the hot dogs should resemble pine cones. Mound the cabbage salad on one half of each croissant, set the hot dogs on top and serve.
The cabbage salad can be refrigerated overnight. The cut hot dogs can marinate overnight in the refrigerator.
4.) Filipino Grilled Chicken
- TOTAL TIME: 1 HR 30 MIN PLUS OVERNIGHT MARINATING
- SERVINGS: 8
- 3 cups water
- 1 cup coconut vinegar or apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/2 cup tamari or soy sauce
- 1/4 cup Asian fish sauce
- 10 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
- 5 whole star anise pods
- 5 bay leaves
- Two 3 1/2-pound chickens, cut into 8 pieces each
- Canola oil, for brushing
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- In a large, sturdy resealable plastic bag, combine all of the ingredients except the oil, salt and pepper. Shake to evenly distribute the chicken and adobo marinade; seal the bag, pressing out the air. Refrigerate overnight.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade. Pat the chicken dry and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, light a grill. Brush the chicken with oil and season with salt and black pepper. Grill over moderate heat, turning occasionally, until lightly charred and an instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest parts registers 165°, about 30 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a platter and let rest for 10 minutes before serving.
5.) Three-Cheese Mini Macs
- TOTAL TIME: 45 MIN
- SERVINGS: 48 MINI MACS
- 1/2 pound elbow macaroni
- 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for brushing
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup milk
- 4 ounces cheddar cheese, shredded (1 packed cup)
- 4 ounces deli-sliced American cheese, chopped
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1/4 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
- Preheat the oven to 425°. In a large saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the macaroni until al dente, about 5 minutes. Drain, shaking off the excess water.
- Brush four 12-cup, nonstick mini muffin tins with butter. Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons of the Parmigiano; tap out the excess.
- In a large saucepan, melt the 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter. Whisk in the flour over moderate heat for 2 minutes. Whisk in the milk and cook, whisking, until boiling, about 5 minutes. Add the cheddar and American cheeses and whisk until melted. Off the heat, whisk in the egg yolk and paprika. Fold in the macaroni.
- Spoon slightly rounded tablespoons of the macaroni into the prepared muffin cups, packing them gently. Sprinkle the remaining 2 tablespoons of Parmigiano on top.
- Bake the mini macs in the upper and middle thirds of the oven for about 10 minutes, until golden and sizzling. Let cool for 5 minutes. Using a small spoon, carefully loosen the mini macs, transfer to a platter and serve.
The recipe can be prepared through Step 4 and refrigerated overnight.
6.) Strawberry Shortcake with Star Anise Sauce
- ACTIVE: 40 MIN
- TOTAL TIME: 2 HR 20 MIN
- SERVINGS: MAKES ONE 9-INCH LAYER CAKE
- 3 ounces white chocolate (preferably Valrhona), chopped
- 2 cups cake flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 sticks (6 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 4 large eggs, at room temperature, separated
- 1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream, chilled
- 1/2 cup crème fraîche, chilled
- 3 pints strawberries, hulled and quartered
- Strawberry Star-Anise Sauce
- Preheat the oven to 350°. Butter two 9-inch round cake pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper; butter the parchment paper. Coat the pans with flour, tapping out any excess.
- Melt the white chocolate in a small saucepan set over a pot of barely simmering water, stirring occasionally. In a medium bowl, whisk the flour with the baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter with 1 1/4 cups of the sugar until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the vanilla, then beat in the egg yolks, 1 at a time. Beat in the melted white chocolate. Add the dry ingredients in 2 batches, alternating with the buttermilk.
- In a medium bowl, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in 1/4 cup of the sugar until the whites are glossy and firm. Stir one-third of the beaten egg whites into the batter, then fold in the rest until no white streaks remain. Scrape the batter into the prepared pans and smooth the tops. Bake for about 35 minutes, or until springy and golden and a toothpick inserted in the centers comes out clean. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then run a knife around the edges and invert them onto a wire rack to cool. Peel off the parchment paper.
- In another bowl, beat the cream and crème fraîche with the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar until firm peaks form. Place 1 cake layer on a serving plate and spread with half of the whipped cream. Top with half of the strawberries and the second cake layer. Spoon the remaining whipped cream over the cake, swirling it decoratively. Top with the remaining strawberries. Serve with the Strawberry Star-Anise Sauce.
The cake can be refrigerated for up to 2 hours.
7.) Minted Watermelon Popsicles
- TOTAL TIME: 10 MIN PLUS 3 HR FREEZING
- SERVINGS: 8
- 1 1/2 pounds seedless watermelon without the rind, cut into 1-inch dice (about 4 cups)
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 1/4 cup mint leaves, minced
- 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
- Pinch of salt
- In a blender, puree the watermelon with the sugar until smooth. Stir in the mint, lemon zest and salt. Pour the puree into 8 popsicle molds or 2 standard ice cube trays (insert popsicle sticks halfway through freezing) and freeze until hard, about 3 hours.
The watermelon popsicles can be frozen for up to 1 week.
One Serving 31 cal, 0 gm fat, 0 gm sat fat, 8 gm carb, 0.4 gm fiber.
8.) Amberjack (Hard Drink)
- SERVINGS: MAKES 1 DRINK
- 1 ounce apple vodka
- 1/2 ounce Macallan Amber (Scotch-based maple-flavored liqueur)
- 1/2 ounce Calvados
- 1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
- 1 1/2 ounces chilled apple lambic
- 1 thin green apple slice
- Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add the vodka, Macallan Amber, Calvados and lime juice; shake well. Strain into a chilled martini glass, stir in the lambic and garnish with the apple slice.
9.) Cucumber Cooler (Soft Drink)
- SERVINGS: MAKES 1 DRINK
- 1/2 cup fresh pineapple chunks
- 2 ounces pineapple juice
- 1/4 ounce Simple Syrup
- 2 ounces Cucumber Water
- 1 ounce chilled club soda
- 4 thin cucumber slices
- In a cocktail shaker, muddle the pineapple chunks and juice with the Simple Syrup. Add the Cucumber Water and ice; shake well. Pour into a highball glass and top with the soda and cucumber slices.
We hope you enjoy these nine unique and fun recipes. Have an amazing Fourth of July!