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Calling for Menu Suggestions

We have an annual bar b q party each year and I am geting a little tired of the sides that we normally do. The Bar B Q is always traditional South Carolina Smoked Pulled Pork with South Carolina mustard-based sauce. My husband is from Charleston and is on a crusade to bring pork bar b q to Texas.

We normally serve Flay's Grilled Potato, Watercress and Bleu Cheese Salad; Coleslaw; Green beans with a Vinaigrette and Ice Cream with Fresh Fruit for dessert. Traditional accompaniments: warm yeast buns for pork sanwiches, pickles, beer, etc.

My question to the board is: Anybody have any great new ideas or recipes on what to serve this year with The Pig?

I welcome all suggestions and I promise to post the final menu and how it was received.


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  1. I have fond memories of creamy tangy cucumber salad whenever we would do a bbq dinner at home - I found this on allrecipes.com, and I believe my Mom's is similar to this, but I recall sour cream instead of mayonnaise

    1 cup mayonnaise
    1/4 cup white sugar
    4 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
    1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
    1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
    4 medium cucumbers, peeled and sliced

    (8 servings)

    1. Thai green papaya salad.
      Tomato, mozzarella and basil salad.
      Jicama slaw.

      1. baked pineapple is a must with the bbq- my most requested recipe!

        2 Replies
        1. re: pamd

          Pamd, is that the recipe with bread cubes, pinapple chunks and butter that's baked together in a pyrex dish?

          1. re: Val

            there are several variations- I actually do not use any cheese or bread/crackers in mine. if interested in my recipe LMK, or you could get one off the internet to meet your taste needs if you want the bread one.

        2. Hush Puppies or Corn Fritters?
          Whenever I think of Carolina BBQ, I always think of the coleslaw and the hushpuppies. If you don't want to be deep frying, you an make corn fritters ahead of time and reheat in the oven. Sometimes I put a bit of hot pepper jam out to eat with the corn fritters, seems to go over very well.

          1. I don't know if you saw this thread the first time it came around, but I thought it had some excellent ideas for bbq sides: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

            By the way, I would love it if I were at a bbq that served hush puppies! In fact, I would probably just eat hush puppies!!

            1. Spike a watermelon with rum.

              Corn on the cob: smear with soft butter, put basil leaves all around the cob, wrap in a damp paper towel and then wrap in heavy foil, and cook on the grill about 10 - 15 minutes on medium heat.

              Hash browns: dice the potatoes, place on heavy foil that has been coated with bacon grease, thinly sliced onion to taste, salt and pepper, mix up and then fold the foil into a package, cook 30 minutes on the grill at a medium heat.

              Pork and beans

              1. Wow you are certainly getting alot of great suport for your upcoming BBQ. I do hope that we are all invited. I like the corn on the cob idea. I dont know exactly how you would have a BBq without it. As an alternative though you may want to make a few different compond butters to compliment the corn rather than just plain old butter. If you like, contact me through my web site and I will send you a few recipes. www.lacuisinesc.com

                Another great idea might be some crab cakes, or make your husband really do some work, and order a whole baby pig from a local farmer and do a pig picken. Also if you have any good cooks coming to your party maybe offer a BBQ sauce contest in the invitation. Just a few ideas let me know if you need more.

                1. How about a few Mezzes from the Mediterranean. I love roasted eggplant salad, which tastes particularly smoky and wonderful when roasted on the barbeque.

                  About 3 lbs of globe eggplants (choose unblemished shiny skin)
                  3-4 lemons, or more to taste
                  4-7 Tbls. extra virgin olive oil
                  Salt & freshly ground pepper
                  2 tsp cumin
                  4 cloves of minced garlic
                  tomato slices, slliced cucumber
                  crumbled feta

                  Roast eggplants on the BB until soft and collapsed (400-450)
                  Put in collander to cool
                  Juice the lemons
                  Put lemon skins in a small bowl of cold water and add a few drops of the juice.
                  When eggplant is cool enough to handle remove and discard the seeds, and place the pulp in acidulated water--after a few minutes remove and drain. Squeeze dry.

                  In a bowl mash the pulp with a fork and add the reserved lemon juice, olive oil,salt & pepper, cumin and garlic.

                  Cover and cool in refrigerator

                  Garnish with tomatoes, cucumbers and feta, crumbled.

                  This is basically Joyce Goldstein's recipe from Sephardic Flavors. She suggests a variation by adding to the basic recipe: green bell peppers, roasted seeded and chopped (I use 2 red peppers-green does not agree with me), 1/2 cup ground or finely chopped walnuts, 1/4 lb crmbled feta, 1/2 cup plain yogurt, drained about 4 hrs, 1 fresh hot chile.

                  Personally, I like it best without additions.

                  Make some pita chips to accompany or just eat it with pork.

                  By the way, I only ever ate real North Carolina pulled pork once in my life--about 21 years ago when visiting my sister at Duke University. I still remember it as one of the most delicious things I have ever eaten and I sure liked the cole slaw and hush puppies that accompanied it. I remember fabulous fresh homemade peach pie and vanilla ice cream for dessert!

                  You could check on line for some other recipes in this vein. I love parsley salad and roast potato salad with vinagrette.

                  1. How about a side of Carolina Caviar (black-eyed pea salad)?

                    1. With all these great recipes and ideas, I kinda hate to make this little comment, but I don't see a pasta salad.

                      1. No real recipes but ideas:

                        Salad of fresh corn, black bean, jicama, red bell pepper, and cilantro w/ chipotle vinaigrette

                        A fresh take on 3 bean salad (use beans like cannellini, cranberry, pinto, etc) w/ smokey molasses dressing

                        Sesame peanut coleslaw

                        Mixed melon salad w/ lime-mint vinaigrette

                        For dessert: If you have an ice cream maker, homemade peach ice cream. If not, peach crisp or strawberry shortcake is what I've been dying to make/eat recently.

                        Good luck and please report back!

                        1. I have a couple of recipes, and will have to post one at a time.

                          This odd combination is from Nigella, and it's really refreshingly good.

                          Watermelon, Feta and Black Olive Salad:

                          Recipe Courtesy of Nigella Lawson.

                          Nigella:" As improbable as it might sound, this combination is utterly fantastic, both savoury and refreshing at the same time. You can pare it down to the essential contrast, and serve no more than a plate of chunked watermelon, sprinkled with feta and mint and spritzed with lime, but this full-length version is hardly troublesome to make and once made will, I assure you, become a regular feature of your summer table."


                          1 small red onion
                          2-4 limes, depending on juiciness
                          1.5 kg sweet, ripe watermelon ~ about 3.5 pounds
                          250g feta cheese ~ a little over 1 cup
                          bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley
                          bunch of mint, chopped
                          3-4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
                          100g pitted black olives ~ about 1/2 cup
                          black pepper to taste

                          Peel and halve the red onion and cut into very fine half-moons and put in a small bowl to steep with the lime juice, to bring out the transparent pickness in the onions and diminish their rasp. Two limes should do it, but you can find the fruits disappointingly dried up and barren when you cut them in half, in which case add more. Remove the rind and pips from the watermelon, and cut into approximately 4cm triangular chunks. Cut the feta into similar sized pieces and put them both into a large, wide shallow bowl. Tear off sprigs of parsley so that it is used like a salad leaf, rather than a garnish, and add to the bowl along with the chopped mint.
                          Tip the now glowingly puce onions, along with their pink juices over the salad in the bowl, add the oil and olives, then using your hands toss the salad very gently so that the feta and melon don't lose their shape. Add a good grinding of black pepper and taste to see whether the dressing needs more lime.

                          1. Here is the second recipe, sorry I had to copy and paste, thus the double posting.

                            This is curtesy of a local Garden Shop, that offered a cooking class, titled "Cooking with Herbs".

                            Orzo Salad with Tomatoes and Feta Cheese

                            1/4 cup red wine vinegar
                            2 T fresh lemon juice
                            1 1/2 T lemon zest
                            1 tsp honey
                            3 garlic cloves, minced
                            1/2 cup Olive Oil
                            6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
                            1 # orzo
                            2 cups halved grape tomatoes
                            7 oz. crumbled feta cheese
                            1/2 cup chopped fresh oregano
                            1/2 cup chopped fresh sweet basil
                            1 cup chopped green onions
                            1/2 cup toasted pine nuts

                            1. Whisk vinegar, lemon juice, honey and garlic in a small bowl. Gradually whisk in oil.

                            2. Bring broth to a boil. Stir in orzo and redure heat to medium. Cover partially, cook until tender but still firm to bite. Drain and transfer to large bowl tossing frequently until cool.

                            3. Mix tomatoes, feta, herbs and green onions into orzo. Add vinaigrette and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature. Add pine nuts and toss. Serve at room temperature and with grated Parmesan cheese if desired.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: mcel215

                              If you're interested in a variation, I make a nearly identical salad that does not include pine nuts and honey but adds chopped fresh spinach (add raw to hot orzo to wilt) and olives. I use either calamata or oil cured; just pit them and give them a quick chop. I look forward to making your version!

                            2. Thanks for all the suggestions, everyone. I wish we had had the time and the room to try them all. I can tell you that I intend to bookmark the thread and come back to it the next time we smoke pig in the backyard. As promised, the final menu is below. Thanks again.

                              Menu for the Backyard Pig Fest

                              Pork (Boston Butt cut) smoked for about 12 hours with oak and some cherrywood
                              Homemade South Carolina Barbecue Sauce (mustard based)
                              Tangy Cucumber and Avocado Salad
                              Tomato, Basil and Mozzarella Salad with Penne
                              Creamy Lemon Coleslaw
                              Roasted German Potato Salad with a Vinaigrette
                              Homemade vanilla ice cream with brownies
                              Usual Condiments: Yeast Rolls, Pickles, Onions, etc.

                              As always, the pig and sauce were crowd pleasers. We had about 20 people drop by when all was said and done. There was much lamenting that the Annual Pig Smoking would have to take a hiatus while the new house is under construction. The Tangy Cucumber and Avocado salad was well received as well as the Creamy Lemon Coleslaw. The German Potato Salad was a little too vinegary, so I will have to play with that recipe. Unsurprisingly, there were no brownies or any ice cream left. Thanks again for the help. Have a great rest of the summer.

                              1. How about an asian slaw? Here are two good recipes:

                                Recipe 1 is really easy. Just mix together the following ingredients:

                                4 spring onions, finely sliced lengthways
                                1/4 red cabbage, finely sliced
                                1/4 white cabbage finely sliced
                                1/2 tin coconut milk
                                2 tsp wasabi
                                1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
                                1 lime, juiced
                                1 tbsp fish sauce
                                handful of coriander, roughly chopped

                                Recipe 2 is a little more work, but not much.

                                6 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
                                6 tablespoons vegetable oil
                                5 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
                                3 tablespoons soy sauce
                                3 tablespoons brown sugar
                                2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger root
                                1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic

                                5 cups thinly sliced green cabbage
                                2 cups thinly sliced red cabbage
                                2 cups shredded napa cabbage
                                2 red bell peppers, thinly sliced
                                2 carrots, julienned
                                6 green onions, chopped
                                1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro


                                In a medium bowl, whisk together the rice vinegar, oil, peanut butter, soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger, and garlic.

                                In a large bowl, mix the green cabbage, red cabbage, napa cabbage, red bell peppers, carrots, green onions, and cilantro. Toss with the peanut butter mixture just before serving.