Saturday, July 4, 2009

The Taste Of Red, White, & Blue

Happy Independence Day!

Americans have, over time, developed foods that are traditionally associated with particular holidays. Thanksgiving has its turkey and dressing. Christmas has its ham or goose (or even turkey again). Valentine's Day has its candies and cakes, most of them colored pink or red. And summertime holidays, like Memorial Day and Independence Day, have their cookouts. Every family does things a bit differently but by and large summer cookouts are one of America's great pastimes. They can be simple and quick like burgers and hot dogs or a bit more complex and time consuming, like smoked chicken or ribs. It doesn't really matter what you cook; there's just something soulful about adding fire and flavor to meat.

Today, the Rackley clan, including my grandparents, who drove in from Arkansas last week, my parents, who hosted the event, and the Martindale Rackleys you know and love, gathered to celebrate America's birthday. We started things off with a late breakfast of Belgian waffles topped with strawberries, whipped cream, and blueberries. My dad had already fired up his new Big Green Egg. I was strictly forbidden from lifting the lid to take a peak. The reason I was given was keeping the temperature regulated, but I think he wanted to keep me in suspense too. It was worth the wait. Six-hour ribs with a special dry rub and finished with a bath of honey, apple juice, and brown sugar were served alongside a marinated pork tenderloin with a fresh pasta salad and baked beans. Chilled watermelon made for a great, refreshing dessert. All in all, it was a very tasty day!

The reason I write this post today is not to make your mouth water over what I ate. I want to know what your July 4th meals consisted of. So, leave a comment with your favorite Independence Day recipes. If I get enough, maybe I'll put together the first ever the POWER of flight cookbook. I'd call it something creative and give free copies to contributors. Maybe I'll sell it on Amazon and become rich and famous like Betty Crocker and Mrs. Smith. Maybe not. Regardless of the result, I'd like to hear from you. So, what did you eat today??

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