Turn the tables on dad and fire up the grill

Instead of having him cook the meal, do the work yourself and make everything from the entree to dessert

The grill may be dad’s territory, but on Father’s Day try to impress him with your outdoor cooking skills.

Brats, burgers and hot dogs are easy meals, but if you want something more challenging, try cooking chicken, steak, ribs or even a pizza on the grill.

In addition to the main dish, you can make side dishes and even create tasty desserts on the grill. Grill a skewer of fruit or a slice of angel food cake and serve it with a scoop of ice cream.

Grilling is an easy way to make a meal without heating up the house, and the smoky flavor adds an extra zing.

One more plus for grilling your meal — clean up is generally much simpler, freeing you to spend more time with dad.

When grilling, trim visible fat from meat and poultry to help prevent flare-ups.

For the most part, grill over medium heat. For gas grills, set controls to medium. For charcoal grills, the coals should no longer be flaming and be covered with gray ash.

If food is grilled at a temperature that’s too high, the exterior can become overcooked or charred before the interior is done. Charring meat, poultry or fish is not recommended.

Use an instant-read thermometer inserted horizontally into the side of the meat to check if it is done. Thermometers should penetrate the thickest part or center of the meat and not touch bone, fat or the grill.

Use a long-handled spatula to turn meats, and don’t press, flatten or pierce the meat or flavorful juices will be lost.

Following are some recipes from www.thekitchn.com.




Garlicky Grilled Kale Salad With Grilled Bread


For salad:

2 bunches (about 1 pound) kale, washed and dried

3 tablespoons grapeseed or other high-heat oil

1/4 teaspoon salt, plus more for bread

2 thick slices sourdough bread

1 small clove garlic

2 tablespoons shaved Parmesan, optional

For dressing:

1 large clove garlic

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil


Cut out and discard the stem and central rib from each kale leaf. In a large bowl, toss the kale leaves with two tablespoons oil and 1/4 teaspoon salt until leaves are evenly coated with oil. Rub both sides of the bread with the remaining oil and sprinkle with a little salt. Rub the small garlic clove over both sides of the bread.

Preheat a grill or grill pan to high heat.

Working in batches, grill kale leaves over high heat for 30 to 60 seconds per side, until brown and crispy on both sides. Grill bread one or two minutes per side, until crisp and lightly charred.

Roughly chop kale leaves into bite-sized pieces and place in a large bowl.

Cut bread into large cubes and set aside.

To make dressing, grate the large garlic clove with a microplane or use a garlic press, then combine with lemon juice and salt in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in olive oil. Pour dressing over the chopped kale and toss to coat. Add the bread cubes and toss.

Transfer to a serving platter or bowl and garnish with the cheese, if desired.



Salmon Burgers With Lime Mayonnaise


For burgers:

1 large egg

1-1/2 pounds skinless salmon

1/2 medium red pepper, finely chopped

2 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped

2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

2 chopped scallions

1 teaspoon lime juice

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup panko

2 tablespoons olive oil

For lime mayonnaise:

1/2 cup canola mayonnaise

2 tablespoons lime juice

1/2 lime zest

To serve:

4 English muffins, split and toasted


Place salmon in the freezer for 20 minutes, until firm but not frozen. Finely chop salmon by hand into 1/8 to 1/4-inch pieces.

Lightly beat the egg in a large bowl. Stir in salmon, red pepper, mint, cilantro, scallions, lime juice, salt, and panko. Mix thoroughly.

Divide mixture into four even piles. With slightly damp hands and working with one pile at a time, gently form the mixture in a ball, then flatten the ball into a 1-inch-thick disk. Don’t mash or overly compact the patties.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add patties and cook about four minutes per side.

Make lime mayonnaise by combining mayonnaise, lime juice and zest.

Serve burgers on the English muffins, topped with the lime mayonnaise.



Garlicky Marinated Grilled Mushrooms


4 cloves garlic, grated

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

2 teaspoons low-sodium tamari or soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 pound cremini mushrooms

2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves


Place garlic, vinegar, brown sugar, butter, soy sauce, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Whisk to combine.

Trim mushroom stems, then halve any mushrooms that are larger than one inch in diameter. Add mushrooms to marinade, toss to combine and let marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes.

If using wooden skewers, soak them in water.

Prepare an outdoor grill for medium-high, direct heat. Once hot, scrape the grates.

Thread mushrooms onto the skewers,  spacing them about 1/2-inch apart. Reserve any marinade left in the bowl.

Place mushrooms in a single layer on the grill over direct heat. Grill uncovered for five to seven minutes per side, flipping once, until tender. Transfer to a large plate or baking sheet. Remove mushrooms from the skewers and place in the bowl with the remaining marinade. Top with parsley and toss to combine. Serve immediately.




Grilled Flank Steak


1 medium scallion

3/4 cup canola oil

1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce or tamari

2 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar

1-1/2 teaspoons ground ginger

1 teaspoon garlic powder or garlic granules

2 pounds flank steak


Trim and coarsely chop scallion and place in a blender. Add canola oil, soy sauce or tamari, honey, white vinegar, ground ginger and garlic powder. Blend on medium-high about 30 seconds, until smooth and combined.

Place flank steak in a gallon-size zipper-top plastic bag. Pour the marinade over the steak and seal. Place in a bowl and marinate in the refrigerator for eight to 24 hours, flipping the bag periodically.

Heat an outdoor grill for direct, medium-high heat. Scrape grill grates. Remove steak from the marinade and place on the grill grates. Grill three to five minutes per side, until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 135 degrees.

Transfer to a clean cutting board. Let rest five minutes, then slice across the grain.



Smoky Salmon BLTs


For salmon:

2 5-to-6 ounce wild salmon filets

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon packed brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Pinch of cayenne, optional

Juice of half a lemon

For sandwiches:

2 croissants, split in half sandwich-style

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

1/2 teaspoon lemon zest

Squeeze lemon juice

4 cooked bacon slices

4 thick tomato slices

4 large pieces green lettuce


Preheat gas grill, covered, on highest heat for 15 minutes.

Stir together smoked paprika, salt, brown sugar, black pepper, and cayenne. Spoon lemon juice on salmon. Rub spice mixture into the salmon and set aside.

Leave one burner on high and turn the others to medium-low. Brush grates thoroughly with cooking oil, then place salmon, skin side up, on hottest grate and cook about one minute, until grill marks appear. Flip salmon, close grill  and cook three to four minutes.

Re-oil the cooler grates. Move salmon, skin side up, to those grates and cook one to two  minutes, until fish is cooked through. Set aside.

Toast croissants lightly. Stir together mayonnaise, lemon zest and lemon juice. Spread a dollop of the mayonnaise mixture onto the top half of each croissant. On the bottom half, layer lettuce, tomatoes, bacon and salmon. Top sandwich and serve with additional lemon slices and potato chips.




Grilled Watermelon


1 personal-sized watermelon, about 3 pounds

1/4 cup sugar

1 tablespoon finely grated lime zest

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Lime wedges


Heat grill to high.

Trim the ends of the watermelon. Stand the watermelon on one cut end, cut in half, then cut each half in half again. Cut the quarters into 1/2-inch-thick slices.

Combine the sugar, lime zest and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. Sprinkle watermelon slices on both sides with the sugar mixture and rub it in.

Grill watermelon slices in a single layer for two to three minutes per side, until warmed through and grill marks appear.

Serve grilled watermelon on its own with lime wedges, topped with feta cheese or Greek yogurt, or as dessert with a scoop of ice cream.



Grilled Shrimp Skewers With Chimichurri


1-1/2 cups packed fresh parsley leaves

1/2 cup olive oil

1/4 cup packed fresh oregano leaves

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

2 cloves garlic

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

2 pounds extra-large uncooked shrimp, peeled and cleaned

1 medium lemon, cut into 10 wedges


Place parsley, oil, oregano, lemon juice, vinegar, garlic, 1/2 teaspoon salt and red pepper flakes in a blender or food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse until it forms a chunky paste.

Transfer three tablespoons to a large bowl and the rest to a serving bowl.

Add shrimp and remaining salt to the large bowl and toss. Let sit for 15 minutes. Heat grill to high.

Thread a lemon wedge onto a water-soaked skewer and slide down until about 1/2-inch from the end. Thread five shrimp onto the skewer, skewering each through the tail and head  and spacing them evenly. Place on a baking sheet and repeat with remaining lemon wedges and shrimp.

Place skewers in a single layer on the grill without touching. Cover the grill and cook about four minutes, until grill marks appear on the bottom. Flip, and cook, covered, about one minute, until shrimp are just firm. Transfer skewers to a serving dish and serve with chimichurri sauce.



Campfire Banana Boat S’mores


4 ripe bananas

12 marshmallows, or a handful of mini marshmallows

12 squares dark chocolate

1/4 cup caramel chips

8 graham crackers, crumbled


Cut a slit in each banana and open the skin slightly. Scoop out a few small chunks of banana.

Stuff three to four marshmallows in the scooped out sections of the banana, then tuck a square of chocolate beside each marshmallow. Sprinkle a few caramel chips over top.

Close the skin as much as possible, then place bananas directly on a campfire grill or wrap them tightly in foil and place directly on coals.

Grill five to seven minutes, until chocolate and caramel melt and the marshmallows begin to look squishy.

Using metal tongs, move bananas to plates. Sprinkle with crushed graham crackers.



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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
(262) 284-3494


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