Summers are short in central New York, so we take advantage of every moment - boating on the lake, relaxing on the patio, grilling, and eating outdoors. That made choosing an August project for Trish's Cook It Up! cookbook challenge a cinch. Weber's Real Grilling has been on my shelf for years. I bought it to go with a Father's Day grill so long ago that the grill is history. The cookbook, however, remains on the shelf, woefully underutilized.
Now it's decision time. Should I keep it or donate it to the library book sale? The first think I did was look through the book for comments on recipes we've already tried. I found just two:
- Halibut with Grill-Roasted Lemon and Caper Dressing - very good! try with swordfish, too
- Bottle o' Beer Chicken Thighs - pretty good
I would have sworn there were others. Since I almost always make some sort of notation, perhaps they weren't worth a comment?
Anyway, the book is printed on very high-quality paper and each recipe is accompanied by a color photograph. There is an introduction to grilling, tips on choosing a grill, and a discussion of basic techniques and handy tools. Chapters include starters, red meat, pork, poultry, fish, veggies and sides, and even desserts. Each chapter offers additional information specific to the category - for example, cuts of meat, what to look for in purchasing beef, how to tell if its done, etc. There are even post-it flags in the back so you can mark your favorite recipes.
Armed with my own supply of post-it flags, I marked nearly 20 recipes to try. In the end, one fish, one red meat, and one chicken recipe made the cut.
Halibut a la Tunisia
Halibut is one of my favorite types of fish. This recipe calls for making a paste of lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, paprika, coriander, cumin, garlic, kosher salt and pepper. It is spread on the fish, refrigerated for an hour or so, and then grilled. The recipe was okay, but there are so many tastier ways to prepare halibut I doubt I will make it again.
New York Steaks with Corn and Avocado Salsa
We used a filet and a strip steak, and rubbed them with the mixture of chile powder, paprika, garlic, kosher salt, oregano, and pepper as directed. After the steaks were grilled, they were topped with the corn and avocado salsa, made according to the recipe. The result...meh. I prefer the spice mixture my husband has perfected over the years, and the salsa wasn't that great either.
Tandoori Chicken Kebobs
After seeing The Hundred Foot Journey, we were craving Indian food and this marinade of plain yogurt, fresh ginger, and several spices including turmeric and cumin sounded perfect. It was good, but not great. I wouldn't make it again.
My final verdict:
Three mediocre recipes. There are still several more I want to try but, given the track record, I think this one goes to the library. Besides, I need to make room for Ina Garten's new cookbook!
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