The last great hurrah of the summer. One of those days where you plan a cook-out or picnic with friends and family, enjoying the last carefree days of the season before the onslaught of school, football, Thanksgiving, Christmas...all fun but hectic!
These types of holidays are always bittersweet for me because while we always try to make them fun, inviting friends and my in-laws to celebrate with us, it is a reminder that I don't have my own family close...especially my sister.
See my sister, Vanessa, and I LOVE each other very much. We actually enjoy each others company. I think it's because we are so much alike. We can cook together, decorate together, talk politics and religion without fighting and of course share all of the same memories of growing up...like me sitting on her and holding her down to torture her because she wouldn't clean the bathroom up after the little girl she was babysitting pooped all over it and I had to do it...but we'll save that story for another day. Ahem..back to Labor Day.
So, anyway, my sister and I love each other very much, and anyone who knows us at all, knows this to be true. Thus, Sister Saturday was born! An opportunity for my sis and I to share virtual holidays, family gatherings and the occasional shot of hard liquor glass of wine after a stressful day being Mommy. And, the coolest thing about these virtual get togethers is you can join us!
A Labor Day Gone South Party
seemed like the perfect way to kick off Sister Saturday.
We will be featuring recipes inspired by our love for all things Southern!
So head on over to my sister's blog
where we will be having cocktails and an appetizer, and then don't y'all forget to head on back over here to enjoy a scrumptious Labor Day picnic and a mouthwatering dessert
....I sure hope you enjoyed the wonderful cocktail and appetizer my sister prepared, I know we did! Isn't her home and backyard beautiful?? My sis and family just pulled up in the drive..
so follow my niece and nephew to the backyard...I've got my extra drink with me, hope you've got yours...cause we're gonna have a picnic!
I've prepared Grilled Flank Steak and Brie Sandwiches and Rutabaga Fries!
Did I lose you at rutabaga?! I hope not because you're in for a treat. Please don't fill up too much cause I need you to save room for dessert, which we will enjoy on the front porch..just like a good Southerner. And, what could be more southern then Grilled Mint Julep Peaches with Bourbon Sauce?!
Cause, it's not a party in Kentucky if you don't have a little bourbon hanging around. Just in case you need a closer peek at that dessert...
I hope you enjoyed joining us for our Labor Day Gone South Party! Now is where I start hinting that it's time to wrap the evening up..that is so you all will leave and Vanessa and I can have one last glass of wine together, just the two of us, sitting on my front porch
Grilled Flank Steak and Brie Sandwiches-Southern Living Magazine
2 large sweet onions
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3 red bell peppers
6 (2- to 3-oz.) ciabatta, french hamburger buns or deli rolls, split
5 ounces Brie, rind removed
1 1/2 cups loosely packed arugula
6 tablespoons mayonnaise
Herb Marinated Flank Steak*-see below
1. Preheat grill to 400° to 450° (high) heat. Cut onion into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Brush with 1 Tbsp. olive oil, and sprinkle with 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Cut bell peppers into 1-inch-wide strips. Place pepper strips in a large bowl, and drizzle with 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper; toss to coat.
2. Grill onion and bell pepper strips, covered with grill lid, over 400° to 450° (high) heat 7 to 10 minutes on each side or until lightly charred and tender.
3. Brush cut sides of rolls with remaining 2 Tbsp. olive oil, and grill, cut sides down, without grill lid, over 400° to 450° (high) heat 1 to 2 minutes or until lightly browned and toasted.
4. Spread Brie on cut sides of roll bottoms; top with arugula, bell pepper strips, steak, and onion. Spread mayonnaise on cut sides of roll tops. Place roll tops, mayonnaise sides down, on top of onion, pressing lightly.
*Herb Marinated Flank Steak
1/2 small sweet onion, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1 3/4 pounds flank steak
1 lemon, halved
2. Preheat grill to 400° to 450° (high) heat. Grill steak, covered with grill lid, 9 minutes on each side or to desired degree of doneness. Remove from grill; squeeze juice from lemon over steak. Let stand 10 minutes.
Cut across the grain into thin slices.
Rutabaga Fries-Gourmet Meals for Less
Serves 4 (can be easily doubled)
1 large rutabaga
2 Tbs. olive oil
2 tsp. chili pepper
1 1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 Tbs. brown sugar
a few grinds of fresh black pepper
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
Slice rutabaga in half. You will need a large, sharp knife. Cut each half into 1 inch thick slices. Cut each slice into strips. Remove waxy outer layer off ends of each strip and off the bottom of the end slices.
Place strips in a large bowl and toss well with olive oil and next 5 ingredients. Spread fries on a non stick cookie sheet. Place on top rack of oven and bake for approximately 12-15 minutes, turning at least twice. Fries should be golden and crisp. When using brown sugar watch for over browning. If fries start to "burn" turn heat down to 35o and cook a little longer.
Grilled Mint Julep Peaches with Bourbon Sauce-food 52
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup Kentucky Bourbon
2 cups dark brown sugar
4 sprigs mint
2 cups premium vanilla bean ice cream
Make the glaze- combine bourbon, brown sugar, & mint stems in a small saucepot over medium heat.
Half peaches & remove stone, brush with canola oil.
Grill peaches, flesh side down and covered, for 2 minutes. Rotate 180 degrees and grill, covered, about 2 more minutes- depending on how ripe the peaches are.
We want to invite you to join us for our next Sister Saturday in October where we will be hosting a Soup Exchange. So get out your favorite fall soup recipes, start cooking and get ready to link up to our Fall Sister Saturday. And whether you are with family, friends, neighbors or enjoying a relaxing day to yourself we hope you have a great Labor Day!