Posted 4th July 2014 by Alaina Wong
We may be 3,000 miles away from our friends across the pond, but that doesn’t mean we can’t throw ourselves a sparkling Independence Day party in true American style.
Whether you’re a US expat living in the UK, or simply a fan of American-style cooking, you’ll love this selection of classic recipes – they might even inspire you to organise a potluck, where everyone contributes a dish. That means cooking time is more enjoyable for you, and there’s less cleaning up!
So get those red, white and blue decorations ready, fire up the grill and don’t forget the fireworks!
Here is my list of dishes I’ll be making this weekend.
THE ULTIMATE AND INDULGENT BREAKFAST
I’ll be starting my day with these gorgeous Fourth of July waffles (6), served with a generous helping of creamy Greek yogurt, seasonal berries and a light dusting of icing sugar. To save time, you can prepare the waffles beforehand and freeze a batch, or simply buy ready-made ones in store.
SUMMERTIME PICNIC OR BARBECUE FILLED WITH YOUR FAVOURITE MEATS, SALADS AND DRINKS
* Three of my favourite things to eat are corn on the cob, potato salad and burgers. Native Americans grew corn as a staple food crop; nowadays sweetcorn is a favourite around the world. Grill and serve hot with butter and a drizzle of maple syrup, or try with grated Parmesan. I’ll be preparing mine with a sprinkling of red chilli and freshly squeezed lime.
* Few salads make a splash the way potato salad does. Plenty of mayonnaise is key, but I prefer to add Greek yogurt or crème fraîche for a healthier choice. The classic version has boiled eggs, chopped celery and cooked bacon bits, but I’ll be going for this herby option (1) that’s filled with fresh mint, parsley, basil and watercress.
* No barbecue would be complete without a juicy burger – and it’s always great fun to build your own. To make yours authentic, go for plenty of dill pickle chips, sliced red onion, tomato, crisp lettuce leaves, ketchup, mayo, and a slice of American cheese. I’ll be adding a cheeky slice of bacon just to finish it off.
* Old-fashioned lemonade is the taste of summer – kids will love helping you make this, and adults can have fun adding their favourite spirits to jazz it up. I’m going to try this sparkling pink version (5), which features the sweet, tart flavour of grenadine syrup and edible rose petals.
OTHER AMERICAN DELIGHTS
* Buffalo chicken wings coated in vinegar, smoked paprika and dunked in a creamy blue cheese dressing. Crudités play an important part to the dish; so don’t forget the sliced carrot and celery sticks.
* The humble hot dog is a must, of course. Traditionally made with grilled pork sausages, topped with spicy mustard, sauerkraut and pickles, this version features a soy-based marinade and a delicious sweetcorn relish.
SWEETEN YOUR FOURTH OF JULY CELEBRATION WITH RED, WHITE AND BLUE PUDDINGS
* In North America, cheesecakes differ, depending on what region you’re from. The New York style relies on heavy cream to give it a smooth, dense consistency, while in Pennsylvania the Dutch-influenced cheesecake use a slightly tangy type of cheese that forms larger curds. Whatever way you like making yours, be sure to lavish it with fresh or defrosted berries (3).
* These no-fuss, jam jar puds (2) are easy to make and will have your guests coming back for more. They’re easily transportable, so great for picnics, too.
Take a further peek at our Fourth of July Pinterest board here
We’re curious to know what you’ll be having for Fourth of July and would love to hear your comments, so tweet us here @TescoFood.