POPSUGAR Celebrity

Host an End-of-Summer Labor Day Feast

Aug 29 2013 - 4:25am

Labor Day is really just one great excuse to host a barbecue: after all, why not invite some friends over to enjoy some delicious eats and the final days of Summer? For those who plan on entertaining in the near future, I've come up with a spectacular meal that's filled with the fabulous flavors of the season. Here's a quintessential grillout perfect for this weekend.

Source: Shutterstock [1]

Pimm's Cooler

Make a big batch of Pimm's Cooler in a large pitcher. Follow this recipe [2] and increase the proportions to fit the number of people who are attending. You may have to seek out a bottle of Pimm's [3], but it's worth it; this is a fruity, refreshing, and crowd-pleasing drink.

Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp and Nectarines

Every fiesta should start with a finger-licking good bite to whet guests' palates. These addictive pop-in-your mouth bacon-wrapped shrimp [4] can be assembled a few hours before the party and grilled as people arrive.

Zucchini Fries With Buttermilk Ranch Dip

Offer these crisp and salty zucchini fries with buttermilk ranch dip [5] as a starter alongside the bacon-wrapped shrimp. Prep the zucchini and dip in advance, but dredge the veggie spears in the flour, eggs, and breadcrumbs just before baking.

Heirloom Tomato and Burrata Salad

A giant platter of tomatoes and burrata with basil [6] can be made a couple of hours before the barbecue. Keep it covered in the fridge and don't drizzle with olive oil or season with salt and pepper until you're ready to eat it. Serve it as a first course when everyone sits down at the table.

Barbecued Chicken

For the main course, grill a whole chicken on a beer can. It's a classic campfire technique that results in super-moist meat. In this recipe [7], the chicken is coated in a spice rub and brushed with an easy homemade barbecue sauce.

Buttery Fingerling Potatoes With Parsley

Fingerling potatoes [8] tossed in butter and parsley are a wonderful accompaniment to barbecued chicken. This particular dish comes together in about 20 minutes. Prep the potatoes in the morning and cook them while the chicken's on the grill.

Honey-Baked Nectarines

With the help of in-season produce, a showstopping dessert is easy to put together. Bake these honey-sweetened nectarines [9] while you are eating, so you can serve them warm after dinner.

Butterscotch Ice Cream

Instead of dolloping crème fraîche over the nectarines, serve them with homemade butterscotch ice cream [10]. It keeps in the freezer for a few days, so get started on this luscious treat now.

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