As much I love exploring exotic parts of the world, there’s nothing like coming home to the good ole U.S. of A. American football, Bud Light, BBQ, FREEDOM?!…What’s not to love? Fortunately, we have an entire day – no, weekend – dedicated to honoring the best things about our country, where all of these quintessentially American elements come together for one epic celebration.
After the first Independence Day in 1776, Americans celebrated the annual holiday with the “ringing of bells, bonfires, parades, concerts, and the firing of cannons.” (Thanks, Google.) Over 200 years later, things haven’t changed much (minus the cannons…). From the beach to the backyard, we’re taking a look at July Fourth traditions across the country, and recommending our fave recipes for each celebration.
Where else would you spend a summer holiday on the coast if not at the beach? Crab boils, bonfires, rosé: all staples of a nautical celebration. While most of you may picture hot dogs and sloppy joe’s on Independence Day, when you’re on the coast, you must indulge in some of the best the sea has to offer. Lobster rolls? Gimme. See below for a scrumptious lobster roll recipe from Just A Taste.
- 4 cups cooked lobster meat, roughly chopped
- 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- ¼ cup chopped celery
- ¼ cup chopped scallions
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 Tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 4 split-top buns
In a small bowl, combine the cooked lobster, lemon juice, celery, scallions, salt and a few grinds of fresh black pepper, tossing until well combined. Set aside. Melt the butter and minced garlic in a small saucepan over low heat. Brush the exteriors of the buns with the garlic butter and toast in a saucepan over medium-low heat on both sides until golden brown.
Divide the lobster mixture into the toasted buns and serve immediately.
Bust out the BBQ
In backyards and patios across the country, millions of Americans will be manning their Websters, grilling everything from hot dogs to ribs to burgers. Meats on meats. What goes best with meat? (Besides a cold beer…) Grilled corn on the cob, [spiked] watermelon, potato salad, and so much more. Check out these Spicy Guacamole Burgers from our friends at What’s Gaby Cooking for some BBQ inspo.
- 1 lb 85% lean ground chuck
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Sharp Cheddar Cheese, sliced
- 2 avocados
- 1 tsp chives, chopped
- 1/2 lime, juiced
Fire up the BBQ to about medium heat. Place lid on BBQ to retain heat and let it warm up. In a large bowl combine the meat, salt, pepper, paprika, red pepper flakes, and garlic. Using you hand, mix everything together until evenly distributed. Divide mixture into 4 sections and form into patties.
Remove the avocado from the skin and smash together with the chives and lime juice with a fork. Set aside.
Transfer patties to the heated grill and grill for about 5 minutes on each side until medium done. Add the cheese at the last minute and let slightly melt. Remove patties from grill and place on buns, top with guacamole and tomatoes if desired and serve.
From Boston’s Boston Pops Celebration to Los Angeles’ Hollywood Bowl Fireworks Extravaganza, an Independence Day spent in the city is still a holiday well-spent. City-run events typically involved big budget firework shows that make your sparklers look like…well, sparklers. Find a rooftop, bring a cocktail, and prepare to be wowed. A perfect summer drink is sangria, which can be made for big groups and transported easily. You can never go wrong with this peach sangria recipe…
- 1 Bottle of Rose
- 3/4 cup vodka
- 1/2 cup peach nectar
- 6 Tablespoons frozen lemonade concentrate
- 1 lb peeled and sliced peaches
- 1 small package of raspberries
- 2 cups club soda
- 2 Tablespoons sugar (optional)
Combine all ingredients except club soda and chill for 8 hours. Add club soda just before serving over ice.
What are your plans for the big holiday weekend? Share your favorite traditions (and recipes!) below. 🙂