The unofficial start of the summer season - Memorial Day - is almost here! Warm days, sunshine, boating, pool parties, vacations. I do love summer! The days are long and lazy and we all seem to relax and enjoy ourselves so much more. That's definitely a reason for celebration!
After all the canceled plans last year, lots of you will be cooking for friends and family, so I've put together a little roundup of 15 of my favorite summer celebratory recipes to help you with your Memorial Day menu planning.
I have everything from ribs to barbecue, brunswick stew and potato salad, along with some delicious sides and a few desserts. There's enough variety here that I'm sure you'll find one or two you'd like to include on your menu.
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Let's start with the main course. An always popular menu item here is my Slow Cooker Ribs! Followed closely by Slow Cooker Pulled Pork. Both of these would be a good choice for celebrations in the southeast this year since there's the chance of a tropical low bringing rain that day!
If you're not a fan of barbecue, then how about a great grilled burger. BeeBop's Bacon Cheeseburger is a fantastic choice.
Of course, you can't plan a summer menu without including several salads. Some of my favorites are this Black Eyed Pea Salad, old-fashioned Copper Pennies, Fire and Ice Tomatoes, and my traditional Potato Salad. And if you're a born-and-bred Southerner (or just one at heart) you know you must include a congealed salad! Polly's Pink Stuff fits that requirement very nicely.
Now, on to the sides! What better to go with the pulled pork or barbecued ribs above than a side of Brunswick Stew? And, of course, Baked Beans are a given. Also, if your crew doesn't care for the mayonnaise type of potato salad, why don't you try my Lemon-Dill Potato Salad? It's nice and tangy and you can easily take it to an outdoor get-together without worrying about the mayonnaise! And then there are Deviled Eggs. One of BeeBop's all-time favorite recipes. I think he could eat a dozen of them right by himself.
No celebration would be complete without a delicious dessert. One of my favorites is good Old-Fashioned Southern Teacakes. Not exactly a cookie but not cake either and not too sweet, they're just perfect for a light treat after a big meal. Or maybe you could go for something cold like my Homemade Peach Ice Cream. But if cake is what you're craving, choose one of these Southern specialties - Caramel Layer Cake or Chocolate Little Layer Cake. Both are delicious and very, very Southern.
So there you have it! A roundup of some of my very best recipes for your Memorial Day menu planning. Here's wishing you and your family a fantastic long weekend full of fun and great food!
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