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5 reasons to fire up the grill this summer

June 20 2017

With July just around the corner, summer is definitely here - and that means it's time to break out the barbecue and sizzle up some delicious dishes. 

From steaks and fish to chicken and even vegetarian options, there are plenty of tasty treats that can be cooked on a grill. If you're looking to offer diners foods that match the latest cooking trends, the McCormick Flavor Forecast 2017 has some great ideas for you to try.

McCormick Executive Chef Kevan Vetter explains that summer is all about bringing new inspiration to grilling favourites like burgers, barbecue sauce, potatoes, and wings.

“Add a twist to your burgers by mixing Korean flavors like sesame, garlic, soy, and honey into the patty, then top with grilled kimchi and ginger garlic mayo. Or put that cast iron skillet to work on the grill and create the ultimate sausage and egg hash," he added.

This year, the McCormick kitchens have teamed up with some of the world's most renowned pit masters and celebrity chefs to discover the latest grilling trends. Here are five ideas - perfect for a summer special.

  1. Korean BBQ burgers - Mix ground beef with sesame, soy sauce, honey, and spices, throw the burgers on the grill and serve topped with grilled kimchi and ginger garlic mayo.
  2. Poke - This Hawaiian seafood salad is normally made from raw fish, but giving the fish a very quick sear can add a lovely smokey flavour. Add shrimp, fresh summer vegetables, and fruits, then mix in a bowl with a citrus-based sweet and spicy dressing.
  3. Potatoes cooked in cast iron - Cold potato salad is a staple of a barbecue feast. But if you want something different from your spuds, try cooking them on the grill in a cast-iron pan. Then turn them into mashed potatoes or a breakfast hash for a unique side dish.
  4. White BBQ sauce - We're all used to red BBQ sauces with a tomato-based smoky flavour, but this mayo-based alternative topping hails from the American South and is a great choice for drizzling over smoked chicken or salad.
  5. Peppered sticky-sweet wings - Black pepper, combined with summer fruits like blackberries and peaches can be a recipe for some delicious grilled chicken wings. Toss the meat in the glaze before cooking, and be sure to reserve plenty of sauce for dipping too.