August 10, 2011

Best Southern Barbecue!

There is one summer activity The Maine House loves to do which is barbecue. I think Darling likes the entire experience of firing up the grill, having all the family around, having a good cocktail at hand, and talking about old times and celebrations yet to come.

Our Summer Yard

Although Texas summers are normally triple digits, we never failed to create a little oasis on the deck and enjoy the barbecue experience. Now that we are in Maine, the summers are so much more tolerable, without too much humidity and evening temperatures dropping into the high 50's! It has been quite an unusual experience wearing a light jacket in August in the twilight hours! So, while August days are nearing the end, try these best of the best summer barbecue recipes with your family. Enjoy each other and take lots of pictures. You will have these memories for years to come! Happy Barbecuing Ya'll!

2 chickens (2 1/2 to 3 pounds each), quartered, with backs removed

Marinate the chickens in 2/3 of the barbecue sauce  overnight in the refrigerator.

Place the chicken quarters on the grill, skin side down, and cook for about 45 minutes, turning once or twice to cook evenly on both sides. Brush with the marinade as needed. The chicken quarters are done when you insert a knife between a leg and thigh and the juices run clear. Discard any unused marinade.

Serve with extra barbecue sauce on the side.

The Best Barbecue Sauce You Ever Tasted
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion (1 large onion)
1 tablespoon minced garlic (3 cloves)
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup tomato paste (10 ounces)
1 cup cider vinegar
1 cup honey
1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
1 cup Dijon mustard
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 cup hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes

In a large saucepan on low heat, saute the onions and garlic with the vegetable oil for 10 to 15 minutes, until the onions are translucent but not browned. Add the tomato paste, vinegar, honey, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, chili powder, cumin, and red pepper flakes. Simmer uncovered on low heat for 30 minutes. Use immediately or store in the refrigerator.

When it comes to baking, Kay Upchurch’s recipe for Sour Cream Pound Cake proves simple is best. It uses only six ingredients, most of which are staples you probably already have in your fridge and pantry.

“It’s a really simple, easy recipe for plain pound cake, and you can dress it up a lot of different ways,” says Upchurch, wife of Tennessee Farm Bureau Federation President Lacy Upchurch. “We enjoy the cake a lot in the spring and summer with fresh or frozen strawberries or fresh peaches.”

Upchurch discovered the Sour Cream Pound Cake recipe in a cookbook compiled by ladies from the Cumberland Homesteads area. A Jamestown native, she is a self-taught cook who learned by trial and error, with lots of “flops” along the way.

“My mother was a beautician who didn’t really like to cook, but my mother-in-law was a great cook and a real inspiration to me in the kitchen,” Upchurch says. “The best compliment she ever gave me was when she told me I turned out to be a better cook than she was.”

The Upchurches have three grown children and seven grandchildren, and they gather at holidays for “lots of home-cooking,” Upchurch says. Her oldest daughter also loves to cook and is a big help in the kitchen. Their permanent home is in Crossville, and they have a second home in Columbia while her husband is serving as Farm Bureau president. He is an avid gardener and grows potatoes, green beans, corn, peppers, cabbage, onions, blueberries, apples and blackberries at their Crossville home, where they spend most weekends. “We do a lot of our own canning and freezing of fruits and vegetables,” Upchurch says. “In the summer we love to make barbecue chicken on the grill, and I do homemade potato salad and coleslaw. I also like to make coconut and chocolate cream pies, fried pies, and homemade cookies and brownies.”


Prize Winning Sour Cream Pound Cake
2 sticks butter or margarine
3 cups self-rising flour, sifted
1 (8-ounce) pkg. sour cream
3 cups sugar
5 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla

Cream sugar and butter well. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Mix in vanilla. Add flour and sour cream alternately. Beat well, and bake in greased tube pan at 325 degrees F. for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Top with fresh or frozen strawberries or other fruit if desired.


Estelle's Strawberry Lemonade!
1 pint frozen strawberries
3 Cups Prepared Lemonade (Estelle's uses Simply Lemonade)

Place frozen strawberries in a blender. Add 3 cups of the prepared Lemonade. Blend together and serve in a pretty crystal glass! I added lemon slices for a festive, cool look!

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