Whether it's a popsicle, a corn dog, a candied apple or a shish kabob, we all enjoy eating something yummy off a stick. This method of eating or snacking reminds us of simpler times like being at a carnival or a street fair. Bringing us a carefree and youthful spirit, skewered food is a casual and fun way to present food at any gathering. I tried out this theme of "Everything Skewered" at a recent summer gathering. Being out on the patio in the warm air, cold skewered appetizers were refreshing while hot grilled skewered items were the perfect compliment to our Belgian wheat brews.
First thing to know about skewering food is that you can skewer ANYTHING! You are only limited by your imagination. You can skewer pickles, olives, tomatoes, beef, chicken, shrimp, fruit, cheese, and veggies-just to name a few. I only scratched the surface when it comes to ideas for a skewered feast. One question came to mind that inspired me to develop my skewered menu. What do I have right now in my kitchen that I could skewer? Fancy or casual, meat or vegetable, what could I put on a stick that everyone will love?
Easy. My first discovery was frozen hot dogs for which I had no buns. Perfect-I would slice the hot dogs into half inch discs, skewer and grill them serving with a mustard dipping sauce. By the way, eating hot dogs off a stick will probably thrill any kid sees these. For any grilling occasion, we tend to think of the typical hot dog and hamburger. To keep that tradition along with my skewed hot dogs, I went for a skewered mini burger, which turned out more like a meatball shape. To step up the skewered burger, I used a leaner choice of ground buffalo. To complete my hot skewered menu, I opted for an all pepper skewer including as many varieties of pepper as possible. For my cold appetizer skewers, I decided upon a fresh mozzarella, tomato and basil skewer along with a sweet and salty watermelon and prosciutto skewer. Check out my "Everything Skewered" menu and start to imagine all of the food that you can present on a skewer to bring a ton of fun to your next gathering.
Lizzy M.'s "Everything Skewered" Menu
Skewered Grilled Hot Dogs with Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce
1 pack hot dogs, sliced into 1/2 inch discs (Slice about 5-6 discs per dog)
1/2 cup spicy mustard
2 tsp honey
1. Slide each hot dog disc onto wood or metal skewers poking through the skin side not through the middle. Place as many discs onto each skewer as you like but I like to do a hot dog's worth of discs on each skewer.
2. Mix the mustard and honey for a sweet and spicy dipping sauce for your grilled skewered hot dogs.
3. Grill hot dog skewers for about 6-8 minutes or until browned.
Barbecue Buffalo Meat Balls Skewers
1 lb. ground buffalo
1/2 yellow onion, grated
2 garlic cloves, grated
1 tbsp steak seasoning
1/2 cup barbecue sauce
1 tsp spicy mustard
1 tsp liquid smoke
1. With a hand grater or microplane, grate half of a yellow onion into a large mixing bowl. Then grate the garlic cloves into the bowl as well.
2. Mix all of the remaining ingredients into the bowl using 1/4 of the 1/2 cup of barbecue sauce. Set aside the remaining 1/4 cup to brush onto the buffalo balls before grilling. Incorporate all components well into the ground buffalo.
3. Form into small meat ball shapes and place onto skewers, about 4-5 meat balls per skewer. Brush each skewer with the remaining 1/4 cup of barbecue sauce. Place on a hot grill sprayed with cooking spray. Rotate every couple of minutes until browned and firm to touch. Serve with extra barbecue sauce
Every Pepper Under the Sun Skewers
1 orange bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
1 green cubanelle pepper
1 red long Italian pepper
Extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Clean and chop all peppers into a uniform squarish shape.
2. Place all peppers into a large mixing bowl and toss well with extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. 3. Skewer all the peppers alternating colors for a vibrant beautiful skewer of peppers. Grill for about 12 minutes, rotating every few minutes.
Tomato, Basil and Mozzarella Skewered Bites
1 pint large cherry or grape tomatoes
6-8oz. container of fresh mozzarella balls, cut in half
8-12 fresh basil leaves
1. On a smaller skewer such as Bamboo forks or skewers, which you can find in the supermarket, poke first a half of the mozzarella ball topped with a small piece of basil. Then poke a cherry tomato on the bottom.
2. Continue until you have a plate full of these beautiful, tasty bites. Chill in the fridge until it is time to snack on these refreshing skewers.
Watermelon and Prosciutto Skewered Bites
Watermelon, cut into squarish shaped chunks
10-12 prosciutto slices, sliced from the deli very thin
1. Top each watermelon square with a piece of prosciutto. The prosciutto can be cut into 3-4 bites per piece or as big or small as you would like.
2. With smaller Bamboo forks or skewers, poke the prosciutto topped watermelon squares and chill in the fridge until it is time to snack.
Enjoy coming up with new ideas of foods you can enjoy from a stick. Have a blast creating your very own "Everything Skewered" Menu!