Hank Would Like It!

If you’ve ever watched the animated show “King of the Hill,” you can’t help but know that Hank Hill is proud to be the Assistant Manager at Strickland Propane, where he sells “propane and propane accessories.” At work, he always ends his telephone greeting with “Taste the meat, not the heat!”  😉

Hubby and I enjoy grilling our meals. When we first married, we grilled over a charcoal grill. There’s no doubt about it, charcoal imparts a lovely flavor to grilled foods –as a special treat when I was growing up, Mom would pull out her little Hibachi and grill us the most delicious meals over charcoal. And there is a pleasure in the ritual of stacking the charcoal, lighting it, and allowing the coals to reach just the right temperature before you start grilling. (Shhh…please don’t tell Hank!)

But for convenience and versatility, a propane grill is tough to beat: a larger grill surface, a bit better control over the heat, instant on and off, and you’re able to grill for long periods of time (we use a smoker box and smoke meats on ours sometimes). To ensure we always have propane, we keep two tanks: one hooked up to the grill and another spare, at the ready to serve when one tank runs out — much, much easier than having to make sure you have enough dry charcoal and lighter fluid on hand when you get a hankering 😉 to grill.

One of our go-to plans for grilling is a meat, potatoes — either baked on the grill or Grilled Cheesy Potatoes — and a tossed salad or some kind of vegetable(s) done on the grill; we especially enjoy doing a Mélange of Grilled Veggies when we have an assortment of tasty fresh veggies on hand. Given the special occasion of our 15th anniversary, the Grilled Cheesy Potatoes and Mélange of Grilled Veggies easily won our votes.

The beauty of these two sides is that not only are they delicious and positively YUMMY, they are sooooo easy to do — simply make up the foil packets (heavy-duty foil is your friend!), plop ’em on the grill, and go about your business — which is hopefully having fun! — until they’re done. If they get done before you’re ready to eat, no problem — they’ll keep nice and warm wrapped in the foil. You can also let them hang out in your oven on the “warm” setting if need be. Another lovely thing with both of these dishes is that it is easy to eat as much — or as little — as you like, which is a boon when you’re feeding a mix of appetites.

The leftovers keep well, too — I had the potatoes for supper tonight, along with a tossed green salad, and I had the best lunch in the world today when I tossed together fettuccine, roasted vegetables, and some light Alfredo sauce. 🙂

Grilled Cheesy Potatoes (Number of servings depend upon number of potatoes — I’ve yet to find a person who doesn’t absolutely adore these tasty taters)

  • Desired amount of potatoes (suggest small red potatoes, but baking potatoes or other potatoes will work, too)
  • Olive oil and butter
  • Salt (suggest sea salt or Kosher salt) and coarse-ground black pepper
  • Sliced chives or green onion
  • Bacon bits (Vegetarians: Use vegetarian bacon or leave out! You could also substitute a few sun flower seeds to give it a bit of crunch, if you’d like)
  • Grated cheese (I generally use reduced-fat, suggest cheddar or whatever other kind of cheese would make you happy)
  • Sour cream (we use reduced-fat) or fat-free Greek yogurt, if desired
  1. Scrub potatoes thoroughly. Leaving skins on, cut into large chunks. (For small red potatoes, unless they’re truly small, I usually cut them into halves or thirds.)
  2. Spread in a single layer on a sheet of heavy-duty aluminum foil that is large enough for you to be able to seal and enclose it as a packet.
  3. Drizzle potatoes with a wee bit of olive oil. Dot lightly with a bit of butter or margarine. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Seal up foil packet.
  4. Put the packet on the grill and just let it cook ’til the taters are done — usually 45 to 60 minutes. (We like it best when they start getting a bit crispety on the bottom.)
  5. Remove from grill and carefully — watch out for steam! — open packet. Sprinkle with a bit of grated cheese, bacon bits (or sunflower seeds), and chives/sliced green onions. Reseal until ready to serve. (The residual heat will melt the cheese.)
  6. Dress each individual serving with a dollop of sour cream or plain Greek yogurt, if desired.  It’s soooooo yummy — like crispy bits of baked potato!

Mélange of Grilled Veggies (Number of servings depend upon quantity of veg)

  • Assortment of desired fresh vegetables: mushroom, onion (red, white, yellow), yellow squash, cherry tomatoes, bell pepper (green, yellow, red) — there are myriad combinations! Select according to what’s in season — and, therefore, more affordable — and what flavors you’re craving.
  • Olive oil
  • Vinegar (red wine, balsamic, apple cider, white wine vinegar — whatever flavor you’re craving)
  • Salt (suggest sea salt or Kosher salt) and coarse-ground black pepper
  1. Scrub/clean vegetables. Leave skins on (such as on squash) where appropriate.
  2. Prepare vegetables for cooking (cut away stems, etc.) and cut into good-sized chunks as appropriate (e.g., you may want to leave mushrooms and cherry tomatoes whole, but would cut a squash or onion into more manageable pieces). I usually cut the pieces about the size I would for roasting — larger than bite-sized, but usually smaller than if they were just halved or quartered.
  3. Place in a single layer of heavy-duty aluminum foil large enough that you can fold up the sides and make a sealed packet.
  4. Drizzle with a bit of olive oil. Sprinkle to taste with vinegar. Season to taste with a sprinkle of salt and coarse ground pepper.
  5. Seal up packet. Place on grill and just leave it be ’til veggies are done — anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes, depending on what assortment of veggies you have. The simple, fresh flavors of grilled mixed veggies is just out-of-this-world YUMMY!
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About MissieLee

I love tasty food prepared in a healthy way with a budget in mind.
This entry was posted in Grilling, Side Dish, Vegetarian/Meatless and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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