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Aug 4, 2009 12:18 PM

Side dish for a bbq?

Am hosting a bbq this weekend for several families. Nothing grill so hubby will be grilling chicken and steak. Burgers and dogs for the kids. Making a corn, tomato and basil salad and need another good side--something relatively simple--make-ahead is a plus--maybe a starch? Any ideas??

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  1. Potato salad? couscous salad? macaroni salad? All taste better when made a day ahead anyway.

    2 Replies
    1. re: dagwood

      Also love a potato salad that's mixed while still warm to soak in the cider vinegar, or sometimes I use dill pickle brine ;).

      Orzo salad is another option. We like ours with roasted peppers, feta & olives. And if you have some ripe avocados, add them to your tomato/corn salad and dress with lime juice. Out of this world, simple!

      Also, if you have fresh baby veggies from the farmer's market, they're nice and pretty when pickled. Or just steam them and serve with an aioli or your favorite dip.

      1. re: Phurstluv

        Agreed! Mixing while warm is the key. I add to mine: mayo, pickle brine, spicy mustard (like Guldens), boiled egg, vinegar, sweet relish, diced pickles, salt, pepper, and a dash of sugar....mmmmmmm.......

    2. we have 2 standards that I have to make by popular request at family bbq's - neither is fancy, both are easy & better the second day.
      One is baked beans the easy way - fry a pound of bacon, crumble into a large pot of a couple cans of baked beans. Add one or two diced onions fried in a little bacon fat. Cook on low to med-low, stirring now & then, for at least 1/2 hr, until it is reduced down. Reheat on stove or in crock pot the next day. Not good for you, but a pound of bacon is a wonderful thing!
      #2 is MIL's potato salad - red potato boiled, then de-skinned ( I leave some skins on), mixed with mayo WHILE HOT and seasoned with celery salt. Excellent the next day, may need to add some mayo before serving. Again, sounds simple, but is very tasty.
      My kids & nephews love them, too, which is always a plus.

      2 Replies
      1. re: elfcook

        Baked beans are a bbq staple for us. There's something called hobo beans (or settler's beans) that is good too. A trio of beans (Kidney, cannellini and pork n' beans) mixed with onions, browned ground beef, chopped bacon, ketchup, brown sugar, cider vinegar, mustard and worcestshire. They are always a hit among varying tastes.

        For the more sophisticated palettes, I'd make baked beans from scratch. Soak beans overnight, mix up and let cook all days, low & slow, with lots of bacon. Mmmmm

        Oh yea, don't forget the deviled eggs!!!

        1. re: lynnlato

          Oooh, yes! Deviled eggs are a must!

      2. I'd go with an orzo salad or a macaroni salad. Also, baked beans.

        I've made this recipe many times for potluck gatherings (despite the recipe title saying "not for potluck" <g>) at former places of employment, and it's gotten rave reviews. (this was copied/pasted directly from an old AOL message board I had posted it on by the person who submitted it to - the notes at the bottom are mine - another note I have on it does say I used molasses as a thickener). It's an oven-baked recipe, but you could probably also do it in a crockpot.

        1 Reply
        1. re: LindaWhit

          They sound good, Linda. I may have to put them on my "to try" list. I love me some baked beans. :)

        2. Grilled Pineapple Spears....
          Grilled Corn on the Cob........
          Tangy Mustard Potato Salad.....
          Cole Slaw.......
          Tri-Color Rotini Salad.....

          1. You could take some mushrooms, wrap in bacon, skewer, baste with bbq sauce and grill 'em.

            Or take some mushroom caps, and stuff with a mixture of ricotta, pesto, garlic, and sprinkle with parmasan and broil or grill.

            I second the macaroni/pasta salad too, something nice and cool that tastes better the day after anyway.