July 4th is a great day for BBQ and Fireworks here in the USA. It’s even better when you can combine your fun and do a great thing. Today I got to go to Facebook friends Derrick and Naylon’s ‘Cue for the Cure. Their friend Donna has developed Breast Cancer and they are rallying around Donna to support her fight against this nasty disease. They have formed Team Donna! to walk in this Fall’s Avon Walk for the Cure 2 event with the intent to raise at least $6,000. So today’s BBQ took on the important purpose of kicking off the fund raising efforts for Team Donna!
One of the way Team Donna! was raising funds for the Avon Walk for the Cure is by selling Raffle Tickets on Gourmet Cocktail Gift Basket. Complete with two bottles of Grey Goose Vodka, often voted as the best vodka in the world, and all the goodies to make some great cocktails, who could pass up the chance to get a chance to win this? I know I didn’t and unfortunately for me, the other guest were buying tickets too. LOL lowering my chances of wining but helping out the cause a great deal. You can learn more about Team Donna! efforts here or clicking on the link at the bottom of this post. I hope you make a donation if you can.
So now for the food at the ‘Cue. It was a great spread that started out some amazing fresh Fruit Salad. A healthy way to start and finish the meal. There were several fruit dishes brought to the ‘Cue by friend and family but I shot this on on the buffet. The Grapes burst in your mouth and the Watermelon melted into sweet water. The Strawberries, Kiwi, Blueberries and Melons were a calliope of fresh fruit tastes. The mixture cooled the afternoon heat and prepared me for the rest of the BBQ.
Next up were the Chicken and Beef Empandas. These Latin American classic were great. Nice and crispy on the outside, with a well cooked filling of either spicy chicken or beef on the inside. It seems like there is as many recipes for empandas as there are people in Latin America but Derrick thought the filling was a combo of plantains, meat, some cheese, some curry, garlic, onions and other spices. I think there might even be some potato in there but I am guessing. I started out without the dipping sauce but when I got to it these savory pastries got even better. Cilantro, hot sauce, green onions, black pepper, vinegar, salt, and lemon juice seemed to be the ingredients here but whatever it was great.
We had chicken two ways at the ‘Cue. The first was a flavourful Jerk Chicken. Naylon had created her own combination of spice packs and home seasonings to create a spicy but almost fruity coating for the chicken legs. Grilled over Derrick’s new combination BBQ, the chicken legs brought the heat but also the flavour. Very nice but not too much heat to scare away us Canadians.
The second way we had chicken was BBQ Wings. These marinated wings were the more traditional hot wings you would get in a great bar. Naylon created her own marinate of spices that permeated the wings and was grilled into the flavour of each wing. Again the heat was there but not over powering the rich and sweet chicken meat.
Every 4th of July has to have Burgers and Dogs, and ‘Cue for the Cure was not different. The burgers went fast so that by the time I got to shoot the burgers and dogs the first set where in peoples’ mouths. LOL. They were good and what can you say about them.
One dish you should always get to first at any of Derrick and Naylon’s BBQ is the Corn Bread. It’s to die for. Sweet, moist, dense, not grainy, no annoying corn kernels and almost pound cake like in consistency. Great flavour and a great mouth feel. Note to Team Donna! auction off pan fulls of this Corn Bread on eBay and you can make your target as soon as those of us who have tried it know about the auctions. Trust me I’m in marketing guy and a Foodie. LOL
Thanks to Derrick and Naylon for inviting me today, it was fun and I got to help out a great cause. So readers it’s up to you now to help out. Click on the link below and see if you can help too.
Happy July 4th, this one was extra special.
Link to donate to Team Donna! http://info.avonfoundation.org/site/TR/Walk2009/NewYork?team_id=73790&pg=team&fr_id=1850