February 9, 2013

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The summer and fall months are the perfect time to eat outdoors. Whether you are making a meal for your family or entertaining friends, everything tastes better outdoors. It doesn't matter whether you are planning a casual dining event or an elegant dinner complete with china, these menu ideas will work wonderfully.

All of the following dishes can be prepared on an outdoor grill. It doesn't matter whether you prefer propane or charcoal, you will still get excellent results. If you want to speed things along, you can also make some of the items inside while your grilling partner works outside.

If you have the time and inclination, you can even decorate the table with fresh cut flowers from your garden.

Here's the menu:

Grilled pizza. You can use italian bread or pita bread to make the pizzas. Other people prefer to purchase pre-made pizza crust. If you are making your own pizza crust, make sure to cook the crust thoroughly before putting it on the grill. Then, top the crust with pesto, cut tomatoes from the garden and feta cheese if desired.
BBQ Chicken. In order to speed things along, you should parboil the chicken on the stove until it is mostly cooked. Then, put the chicken on the grill and cover with BBQ sauce. If you cover the grill with aluminum foil before putting the chicken down, it will make clean up much easier. By starting the cooking process indoors, you can cut down your cooking time significantly. You can use both chicken breasts as well as chicken drumsticks to make this dish. You should cook at least 3 drumsticks per person or one chicken breast per person to make sure you have enough food for guests.
Grilled vegetables. Grilling vegetables is easy if you know a few tricks. The key is really to properly prepare the vegetables before placing them on the grill. You can either skewer the vegetables and make vegetable kabobs, or you can cut up vegetables and put them in aluminum foil packets. You can cut up potatoes, carrots, onions and tomatoes. Add some butter, parsley and oregano for flavoring. Then, place the packet on the grill for about 20 to 30 minutes to cook or until the vegetables are tender.
Kid friendly food will be sure to please. If your guests are bringing their children, you may want to cook some hot dogs on the grill just in case. Most children will eat hot dogs, even if they don't like grilled chicken. Don't forget dessert! After everyone has eaten and the grill is cleaned, you can start grilling dessert. It is possible to cook dessert on the grill!
One of the easiest dishes to cook is grilled peaches or apples. To do this, cut up peaches or apples and place them in an aluminum foil packet. You can add sugar and cinnamon to the packet to enhance the flavor of the fruit. You can also sprinkle brown sugar over the fruit as it is done grilling. The fruit is done when it is tender. After taking the fruit off the grill, you can serve with ice cream or homemade cookies.

Christianne Child is a top sales representative and award winning Guelph Realtor. For more tips on how to sell your house for top dollar, or for help buying a house, check out her Guelph Real Estate website.

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