As the excitement grows for the holiday weekend, we thought we would share four more mouthwatering recipes from Honey Salt’s Elizabeth Blau. If you caught our last post, we were all agog over her Corn Flake Crusted French Toast Recipe—so much so that she kindly agreed to share some of her favorite summer-inspired recipes for this year’s Fourth of July celebration. From an ambrosial Red Sangria and an exquisite Burrata Heirloom Tomato Salad to savory Barbecued Ribs complemented with a sweet Summer Berry Spoon Bread, this is one menu that should be on repeat. For those just catching up, Elizabeth Blau is a Las Vegas-based restaurateur. With her husband, Chef Kim, her eponymous firm caters to all aspects of the restaurant industry—making her a perfect partner. She also just happens to have one of our 48” Glass Door Refrigerator’s in her own kitchen.
But back to the more pressing matter of Fourth of July feasts: Blau has a variety of tips she shared that are also echoed in her book, Honey Salt: A Culinary Scrapbook. When it comes to making your Burrata Salad, there is no need to be stingy with the tomatoes. Not only does she confer that they are a great source of lycopene—a powerful antioxidant—she also explains that one cup of raw tomatoes can contain a third of your daily vitamin C and mineral intake. So indulge away! The Barbecued Ribs, which Blau claims come with more of an instruction manual on how to create delicious, yet easy-to-make ribs than an actual recipe, are the quintessential summer treat. As for the dessert? A good rule of thumb is to search out the most fragrant berries—those will be the ripest. She also advises that the berries should be plump, firm, dry, and blemish free. If you choose your berries right, Blau promises a foolproof recipe. When it comes to Sangria, whether it’s for two or twenty, making large batches will free up time and make hosting all the easier—so you can actually sit back and enjoy your own fête! Whether it’s for two or twenty, a premade signature cocktail also allows for a creative holiday or seasonal theme. Elizabeth’s special touch? She substitutes San Pellegrino Limonata for the Sparkling Lemonade.
Happy Fourth of July!
- 1 bottle of lightly flavored red wine (though you can use white or rosé if you prefer)
- 2 cups seasonal fruits and citrus, diced into half-inch pieces (Elizabeth recommends using apple and citrus fruits—but to definitely play around with orange, blood orange, and even grapefruit in a white sangria. When in season, peaches, nectarines, and cherries make a great addition. In the summer, raspberries and blueberries add gorgeous color and flavor)
- 3 oz club soda
- 3 oz sparkling lemonade (Elizabeth’s tip: use San Pellegrino Limonata)
A day ahead of time, pour the wine into a pitcher or other container. Add the fruit, place into the refrigerator, and let macerate overnight.
To serve, pour a half-ounce of club soda, a half-ounce of the sparkling lemonade, and the sangria into a glass. Garnish with an orange peel if desired.
(Elizabeth recommends a favorite brandy or Grand Marnier if you like a bit more of an alcohol punch.)
BURRATA HEIRLOOM TOMATO SALAD
- Handful of fresh-picked basil (enough to equal 1 1/2 cups chopped)
- ½ cup grape-seed oil
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil plus more to drizzle
- 2 lbs. Burrata cheese
- 5 Rosa Bruno tomatoes, cut into wedges
- 1 pint red and yellow teardrop tomatoes, chopped
- 10 Black Mission figs, quartered
- ¾ cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup balsamic reduction
- Basil oil:
- 1 ½ cups basil, chopped ½ cup grapeseed oil, ¾ cup olive oil
Start by preparing basil oil. Place fresh-picked basil leaves in a blender. Heat grape-seed oil and olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat until hot but not smoking.
Pour the oil over the basil leaves in the blender and, using a towel to prevent splattering, puree mixture until smooth. Pour through a fine sieve and reserve.
Place the Burrata in the center of a large oval platter or shallow bowl and drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
Place the tomatoes and figs in a separate bowl, and toss with balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper. Then arrange the tomatoes and figs around the cheese on the platter.
Garnish with a drizzle of balsamic reduction, basil oil, sea salt, crushed pepper, and fresh basil.
- 2 racks of pork spare ribs, 4-5 lbs. each
- 2 ½ cups of your favorite barbecue sauce
- For the grill, 1 cup hickory, mesquite, or applewood chips
Soak the wood chips in water for at least 30 minutes. Preheat your grill to medium-low heat, about 250 degrees F.
If using a charcoal grill, drain the wood chips and scatter over the hot coals. For a gas grill, drain the wood chips and put in a smoker box positioned over direct heat.
Place the ribs on a cutting board, meat side down. Insert a sharp boning knife between the bone and the membrane, and trim off the membrane.
Season the ribs liberally with salt and pepper, then put the ribs meat side down onto foil and place at the coolest point of the grill. Close the lid. When the temperature reaches back to 250 degrees F start timing the ribs for about a 3-hour cook.
Remove the ribs, wrap tightly in foil, then return them to the grill. Close the lid and cook for another 1 ½ hours.
Again, remove the ribs and unwrap. Return the ribs to the grill, this time meat side up, and baste with your favorite barbecue sauce. Cook until the ribs are tender.
Remove the ribs and let rest for 5 minutes before slicing. Serve with the remaining barbecue sauce.
SUMMER BERRY SPOON BREAD
- 2 pints fresh blueberries
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 2 tbsp. cornstarch
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsp. lemon zest
- 1 ½ tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup milk
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup butter, melted
Toss the blueberries with 1/2 cup of sugar and the cornstarch in a large mixing bowl. Let mixture set for 10 minutes to macerate the berries.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour with the remaining cup of sugar, lemon zest, baking powder, and salt.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs with the milk and vanilla extract. Then whisk this liquid mixture into the dry ingredients until combined, and whisk in the melted butter.
Spread the blueberry filling into a 9″ x 13″ baking dish. Spoon the batter over the berries, leaving gaps between each spoonful.
Bake in the center of the oven for 1 hour, until the fruit is bubbling and a toothpick inserted in the spoon bread comes out clean. Let cool at least 1 hour before serving.