The first Labor Day was celebrated about 130 years ago on Tuesday, September 5, 1882. Like all successful endeavors, there is contention over who is the true originator of the idea for such a holiday, however, its purpose is without dispute. This day of rest is a tribute to the contributions that workers have made to the prosperity and success of the country.
Bearing this is in mind, your Labor Day barbecue (otherwise affectionately referred to by the three letter acronym “BBQ”) should not be a chore. The food should be delicious, your friend should think you slaved over it…but you should not have to toil on such a day of celebration.
Here are some Stark Insider favorites from my kitchen to yours to help you gear up for this weekend. Enjoy!
Appetizers (aka. What to feed your guests when they arrive so they stop lurking and back seat grilling)
“Sunshine in a Bite” sundried tomatoes and salami appetizer recipe: This appetizer not only looks great, but has a wonderful balance of sweetness of the sundried tomatoes with the saltiness of the salami.
“How gourmet!” macadamia nut goat cheese log: This recipe will transform a Plain Jane cheese platter into something really special.
‘Sushi Obsession’ asparagus prosciutto rolls: What is not to love about prosciutto? With the latest pork craze, this recipe will make sure you are deliciously with it. Variations of this could include swapping out the asparagus with pear or melon.
‘Cool as a cucumber’ Summer Squash Chips and Dip Recipe: Want something a little healthier than nachos and dip?
The Main Stage
“Spoil and pamper me, darling” steak marinade recipe: Simple, yet effective. This recipe will tenderize your steaks and give them more depth of flavor. This marinade can’t turn poor cuts into good ones, but it will make good cuts into specular pieces of beefy glory.
Buyers Guide to BBQ Smokers and Drunken Salmon recipe: Want to outdo the Jones’? Why not offer some fancy home-smoked meats
“Just Peachy” Grilled peach with honey mustard glaze: Love peaches? This is the recipe for you. It’s surprisingly simple and gives the summer peaches just a nice kick.
“Live simply” tomato and feta salad: This recipe depends on tomatoes picked at their peak ripeness. Best to by the tomatoes from the local farms, you won’t regret it.
“Ugly, but Good” Papaya, avocado and macadamia nut salad: This recipe was inspired by a trip to Hawaii. It doesn’t look good, but one bite and you won’t care what it looks like.
‘Easy As Pie’ Apple Pie Recipe: A summer BBQ classic. Top with vanilla ice cream is a must. I use a store bought crust from Trader Joe’s which I find has the most “homemade” taste and well worth the time savings for the results you get.
‘I dream of lemons’ Lemon Dream Cupcakes: Cupcakes are these cupcakes are simply dreamy to look at and dreamy to eat.
“All’s well that ends well” Lemon Almond Chocolate-Dipped Biscotti: If you want a light dessert that is easy to carry around and doesn’t require another set of dishes, this biscotti recipe may just be the answer.
If it is a hot day, Mother Nature’s watermelon is always a welcomed refreshing end.
Finally, here are some tips to pull it all together: Summer Dinner Parties.
Have a great labor day weekend!