July 2016 — The Independence Day Issue
To celebrate the Fourth of July this year, we are embracing three summer cookout classics. Our menu includes grilled potato salad, gourmet hot dogs and a peach cobbler that was smoke-roasted on the grill. Even though these are classics we are still giving each recipe the full Kalamazoo treatment. Your family and guests will be thrilled with the amazing flavors in these typically humble dishes. Get outside, fire up that grill, and enjoy these fireworks for your taste buds.
Grilled Scallion Potato Salad
This recipe lends a fresh, gourmet twist to the typical potato salad. The grill adds a subtly smoky caramelization to green onions and new potatoes – transforming a classic, creamy potato salad into a cookout masterpiece. Served warm or cold, you’ll love this grilled potato salad.
- 2 pounds new potatoes, washed and trimmed
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon champagne vinegar
- 1 teaspoon freshly-squeezed lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons crème fraiche
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 poblano chili
- 8 green onions
Place the potatoes in a large pot and fill with cold water to cover by 1 inch. Add the kosher salt, cover the pot, and then bring to a boil. Once boiling, remove the lid, lower the heat and cook about 10 minutes more until slightly tender. Drain and let cool.
While the potatoes are cooking, prepare the sauce. Combine the vinegar, lemon juice, mustard, buttermilk and crème fraiche with 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large mixing bowl. Whisk to combine. Keep refrigerated until ready to use.
Prepare the grill for direct grilling over high heat.
Grill the poblano until charred and blackened on all sides, about 6 minutes. Transfer directly to a bowl and cover it with a plate to lock in the steam. Wait 5 minutes, then scrape off and discard the charred skin. Stem and seed the chili, then coarsely chop. Reserve.
Once the potatoes have cooled enough to handle, slice them 1/2 inch thick and arrange on a sheet pan. Brush with olive oil and season with salt on both sides.
Grill over high heat until nicely browned, about 3 to 4 minutes per side. Grill the green onions until browned and wilting, about 5 minutes total time. Trim the root ends off the onions and discard. Slice the onions about 3 inches long.
If serving warm, use a soft spatula to gently fold the poblano, potatoes and onions into the sauce. If serving cold, refrigerate the potatoes, onions and poblano until cool, and then fold into the sauce.
Hedgehog Po’ Dogs
Not long ago, I was dared by colleagues to cook hot dogs for a client demo. At first, I laughed. But then, the grillmaster in me rose to the challenge, and I set out to prepare hot dogs the Kalamazoo way. Of course, I had to figure out what that would be. The result was so fun and delicious, I knew I had to share the recipe.
I score the hot dogs creating a "hedgehog" effect to maximize the flavor and texture when they are browned on the grill. Decadent brioche hot dog buns are toasted on the grill, and then filled with remoulade, micro greens, heirloom tomatoes and those beautiful dogs.
If you don’t want to make your own remoulade, I suggest the Whole Foods brand prepared remoulade.
Prepare the grill for direct grilling over high heat. A charcoal fire is preferred.
Carefully score the hot dogs all over in a cross-hatch pattern, creating a hedgehog effect using 1/8 inch deep slices about 1/4 inch apart.
Use a soft spatula to spread mayonnaise on the insides of the hot dog buns.
Slice the tomatoes into thin wedges.
Grill the hot dogs, rolling them occasionally to deeply brown them on all sides, about 10 minutes cooking time.
Lightly brown the mayonnaise-coated sides of the hot dog buns on your warming rack, or in a cooler zone of the grill.
To assemble, spread or drizzle a moderate amount of remoulade in the center/bottom of the buns. Add the grilled hot dogs, sliced tomato and microgreens.
Smoky Bourbon Peach Cobbler
One of my father’s signature dishes when I was growing up was peach cobbler. This was appropriate since he grew up in Georgia. I remember he never used a recipe, he simply threw it together. It was one of my favorite summertime treats. So, when we were discussing recipes for summer cookout classics, peach cobbler became a must.
This recipe is super easy to make – especially on a Kalamazoo grill because the even flow of heat lends itself very well to baking. The flavor has been ratcheted up with a little bourbon, a hint of maple syrup, and a whole lot of pecan wood smoke. I used the Smoker Pellet Grill Inserts for the Hybrid Fire Grill and Premium Wood Pellets to make this dish. If you have a Hybrid Fire Grill, I highly recommend you check out our new grill accessory!
For the crust:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon fine gray sea salt
- 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold
- 1 1/3 cup buttermilk
For the filling:
- 1 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup bourbon
- 2 tablespoons rich, dark maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon freshly-squeezed lemon juice
- 6 cups yellow peaches, sliced
- Vanilla ice cream
To make the topping, combine the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Cut the butter into 12 to 16 pieces and cut into the mixture with a pastry cutter. Cut until the texture is relatively fine, but don’t completely break down the butter. Stir the buttermilk in with a wooden spoon to finish the dough. Reserve.
To make the filling, whisk together all of the ingredients except the peaches. Gently fold in the peaches last.
Pour the peach filling into a greased 12-inch cast iron skillet. Drop spoonfuls of topping over the top. Transfer to the indirect zone of the grill with the smoke going and close the lid. Bake, rotating occasionally, until bubbly and golden brown, about 40 minutes.
Serve warm with ice cream.