Memorial Day Weekend — All American cuisine!

As high school and college grads look to celebrate a milestone in their academic journeys with May graduations, the rest of America is happy to jump on any party band-wagon this weekend in honor of great summer weather. Partying this long weekend is especially all about Memorial Day, with the holiday offering great party themes, the best of which denote the All-American'ness' of the fallen men and women who gave their lives for our country.

Planning a party or get-together for your friends and family and wondering how to have Memorial Day written all over it? No stress! Think red, white and blue….Don't be shy about your patriotism. When it comes to the cuisine everyone looks forward to at a party, no need for fancy crockpot cooking or new stove-top inventions. Traditional is the way to go and the outdoors await. Simply break out the grill that's been waiting for good weather and grab a case of chicken and hot dogs for a BBQ. After a good marinade, some toasted buns, potato salad and chips are all you need to complete a hearty plate. Dessert is where it all starts to get fun! Bake a simple yellow cake and whether home-made or store-bought, some white icing and arrangement of strawberries and blueberries making the U.S. flag. Your guests will love it!

What to down all the savory goodness with? The kids would die for as some cherry and blue raspberry Kool-Aid and the adults will appreciate the cooling freshness of some good ol' fresh American lemonade. Here's a recipe:

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups white sugar
  • 8 cups water
  • 1 1/2 cups lemon juice

Directions

  1. In a small saucepan, combine sugar and 1 cup water. Bring to boil and stir to dissolve sugar. Allow to cool to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate until chilled.
  2. Remove seeds from lemon juice, but leave pulp. In pitcher, stir together chilled syrup, lemon juice and remaining 7 cups water.

 

Feel free to kick it up a notch in line with Memorial Day colors with this flavorful thirst-quenching Blueberry Lemonade beverage concoction from food blogger Marc Matsumoto:

Ingredients

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup lemon juice
  • 4" strip of lemon zest (just the yellow part)
  • 6 ounces blueberries (use your favorite berry)
  • 4 cups still or sparkling water
  • ice

Directions

  1. Put the sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest and blueberries in a blender or food processor. Blitz until the mixture is smooth.
  2. If you want your lemonade to be pulp-free, strain the mixture through a tea strainer, otherwise pour the mixture into a 2-quart pitcher.
  3. Add the water, and stir to combine. Fill the pitcher with ice and serve.