These recipes originally appear in the July 2022 issue of HomeLife Magazine.
Follow your nose to a favorite food memory.
Recently, I stumbled across reviews on Walker Hayes’ mega-hit song “Fancy Like.” They were generally a mix of opinions and somewhat entertaining to read. One caught my eye, and paraphrased it read, “It’s a song about folks appreciating the simple things in life.” I rather like the sound of that sentiment, so this month we’re officially breaking out the tunes, breaking out the grill, and getting — well, you know — fancy like.
While we’re at it, let’s belt out a few lines about amazing burgers on the grill. No, not the same ol’ Jimmy Buffett “Cheeseburger in Paradise” with lettuce and tomato, Heinz 57®, and French-fried potatoes. We’re talking fancy-like burgers and sides you can serve to all your foodie friends, poolside or anywhere there’s an appetite.
I don’t claim to be a scientist, but I’m pretty sure there’s evidence that your sense of smell and your memory are closely linked. That must explain why just one whiff of meat on a distant grill and my mind takes a little side trip to all the watering holes I had the pleasure of plunging into. From the Suwannee River to the Gulf of Mexico, and north to the clear lakes of Carolina and Tennessee, those summer adventures come flooding back. And you know what? They were always highlighted by a picnic, or cookout, or a quick dining experience.
I think most of us agree eating outside in the summer is a blessing, but let’s not ignore that it does present certain challenges. For one, keeping food safe for consumption at an all-day gathering. Not to worry, this French potato salad with baby arugula recipe calls for Dijon mustard and Champagne vinegar instead of mayonnaise and is best served at room temperature with the rest of these delicious dishes on a bright and festive tablecloth.
I saved the best for last because it’s not a party until dessert is served. This silky chocolate mousse pie recipe will get you humming and pairs perfectly! Mousse is different from pudding as whipped egg white or cream are folded into a milk and sugar base, rather than using cornstarch to thicken before the cooking begins. It makes for a more airy and fluffy filling. Fancy like!
So, here’s to lingering around the tablecloth this month with family and friends, taking in the great outdoors near your favorite watering hole, and putting a little fancy-like on the simpler things
Burgers with Fig Mayo | Makes 8 burgers
2-1/2 lbs. ground beef
8 Brioche hamburger buns
2 red onions (sliced)
12 oz. jar roasted red peppers (drained)
4 Tbsp. mayonnaise
2 Tbsp. fig preserves
salt and pepper
In a large bowl, combine ground beef with seasonings and mix well with clean hands. Divide meat into eight equal rounds and shape into patties, then set aside on a platter. Place sliced onions into a pan and sauté with a little oil until they are translucent. Mix the mayonnaise and fig preserves to use as the condiment. Oil grill plates. Place burgers on grill and cook until desired doneness. For rare burgers, cook four minutes total, or until internal temp reads 125 degrees; for medium-
rare burgers, cook five minutes total (135 degrees); for medium burgers, cook seven minutes total (145 degrees); and for well-
done burgers, cook for nine minutes total (160-165 degrees). Toast buns on grill if desired. Once the burgers are done, layer as follows: bottom bun, burger, roasted pepper, onion, then spread the fig mayo on the top bun.
The best ground beef to buy for burgers is 80/20 ground chuck – 80% lean meat and 20% fat.
—Tip from Laura
French Potato Salad with Baby Arugula | Makes 8 servings
2-1/2 lbs. fingerling potatoes (cut in half lengthwise)
1/2 red onion (sliced thin)
1 Tbsp. capers (drained)
2 cloves garlic (minced)
1 shallot (finely chopped)
1 tsp. fresh thyme (chopped)
1 Tbsp. fresh tarragon (chopped)
2 Tbsp. fresh chives (chopped)
2 Tbsp. fresh parsley (chopped)
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
3 Tbsp. Champagne vinegar
1/2 c. olive oil
2 c. tightly packed baby arugula leaves
1 tsp. salt
salt and pepper to taste
Fill a large pot with water, add potatoes and boil for nine minutes, or until fork tender. Drain and let stand to cool. In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients (oil, vinegar, and mustard) until emulsified. In the same bowl, stir in the capers, garlic, shallot, and herbs, and add one teaspoon of salt. In a medium bowl, add warm potatoes, sliced onions, and dressing. Gently fold and let sit at room temperature to allow potatoes to soak up dressing and absorb flavors. Immediately before serving mix in the baby arugula and season with additional salt and pepper. Serve at room temperature.
Chocolate Mousse Pie | Makes 8 servings
21 chocolate sandwich cookies (Oreo®)
1/2 stick of butter (cut into pieces)
3 c. heavy cream
¾ c. cocoa powder (sifted)
1/2 c. confectioners sugar (sifted)
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degree. Thoroughly grease a springform pan with a thin layer of butter. Add cookies to the food processor and pulse until fine. Add the remaining butter to the processor and pulse until crumbs are evenly moistened. Press mixture into the bottom and halfway up sides of the springform pan. Bake crust five minutes and remove from oven to cool. Meanwhile, in a large bowl use a handheld or stand mixer to whip the heavy cream on high until thick and frothy. Add the sifted cocoa, sugar, and vanilla to the cream and whip on low until all is combined well. Increase the speed and whip until stiff peaks form. Using a spatula, pour on top of cooled crust and chill for six hours. To serve, remove outer pan and slice into servings.
For appearances, garnish the pie with whipped cream, strawberries, or chocolate shavings.
‑Tip from Laura
Laura Schupp is the author of Our Newlywed Kitchen: The Art of Cooking, Gathering & Creating Traditions. Learn more about Laura at OurNewlywedKitchen.com.