It’s been about six years since my father died. But this upcoming weekend, my family will celebrate him and the other fathers in our lives — men who are role-models, “fathers” who became ones by being friends, and those who are actually part of our family.
My father was the cook of our house. My mom primarily dabbled in reheating frozen meals. He was picky about his food. I remember experimenting with tuna salad by putting some mustard in with the mayonnaise and some celery. I still remember him looking at me, going “That’s not how we make this.” Then he proceeded to show me how its done.
At one point, he “showed” me how to grill. I put that in quotes, because it was more like I watched him, and then a few days later, he gave me some ribs and said, “These are dinner. Cook them.”
I had no clue what to do. So I did my best.
My younger sister complained how the ends were burned but the middle was a bit too raw. My dad and I gave her a little side eye, but I made something on the grill. It was so cool.
He never showed me how to correctly make ribs, but he did show me how to smoke a turkey – hint, it takes forever in teenager time. He showed me how to make my own spaghetti sauce and a lot of other things that don’t involve cooking at all.
Below are a few grilling recipes he shared with me for old-time’s sake.
For all the dads out there, enjoy your Father’s Day!
GRILLED RIBS WITH CHERRY COLA BARBECUE SAUCE
5 to 6 lb. pork baby back ribs
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1 teaspoon garlic pepper blend
½ teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup barbecue sauce
1 can (12 oz.) cherry cola
¼ cup cherry preserves
½ teaspoon ground mustard
1 to 2 teaspoons hot sauce
■ Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cut ribs into serving-size sections. Rub ribs with Mix seasoned salt, garlic pepper and ginger and rub on ribs. Place ribs in 15x10x1-inch pan, overlapping slightly. Bake uncovered about 1 hour 30 minutes or until tender.
■ While the ribs cook, using a 2-quart saucepan, mix barbecue sauce, cola, preserves, mustard and hot sauce. Heat to boiling; reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer uncovered 30 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until flavors are blended and sauce is slightly thickened.
■ Heat coals or gas grill for direct heat. Cover and grill ribs over medium heat 10 to 15 minutes, turning and brushing occasionally with barbecue sauce mixture to glaze.
■ Heat remaining barbecue sauce mixture to boiling; boil and stir 1 minute. Serve sauce with ribs.
GRILLED SOUTHWESTERN CORN
4 medium ears corn
¼ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon olive or canola oil
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1 cup Taki’s, crushed (they’re a kind of chip, usually where you find spicy chips)
■ Heat gas or charcoal grill. Brush grill rack with canola oil. Place corn directly on grill over medium-high heat. Cover grill. Cook corn 8 to 10 minutes, turning occasionally, until lightly browned on all sides.
■ Meanwhile, in small bowl, mix salt, cilantro and Takis; set aside.
■ In 8-inch nonstick skillet, mix 1 tablespoon oil and the cumin. Cook over medium heat about 30 seconds, stirring frequently until fragrant. Stir in garlic powder. Brush cumin mixture over hot corn; sprinkle with Takis mixture.
GRILLED SUMMER COBBLER
¼ cup butter or margarine, melted
1 ¼ cups Original Bisquick™ mix
¾ cup sugar
½ cup milk
1 nectarine, sliced (1 cup)
1 cup fresh blueberries
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
■ Heat gas or charcoal grill. In medium bowl, mix Bisquick mix, 1/2 cup of the sugar and the milk; beat 30 seconds.
■ In 9-inch round foil cake pan, melt butter on grill over medium heat. Pour batter over butter in pan. Top with nectarine and blueberries. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup sugar and the cinnamon.
■ Cover grill; cook about 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.