Spice it up this summer

The weather is warmer…the nights are longer…and entertaining just got better. So fire up that grill, turn on some oldies and throw a picture-perfect outdoor party. Here are a few great ideas to get you started, featuring eats and drinks that deliver some heat. Cheers!

Prince William Poppers

Serves 6

  • 6 fresh jalapeno peppers, halved lengthwise and seeded (If you like things really hot, use habaneros)
  • 1 8 oz package cream cheese
  • 4 oz sharp cheddar, grated
  • 1/4 cup minced pineapple
  • 1 teaspoon ground ancho pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 12 slices bacon

Preheat outdoor grill for high heat. Cut the stems off of peppers and discard them, then cut them in half lengthwise. Run the blade along the inside wall of pepper to remove seeds and white ribs. If you like hot stuff, leave the ribs in.

Combine cream cheese, cheddar, pineapple and seasonings in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Spread cream cheese mixture to fill jalapeno halves. Wrap with bacon. Secure with a toothpick.

Put rack of peppers on grill over indirect heat, not directly over the flames. Close lid and grill until bacon is crispy, about 20 minutes.

Bloody William & Mary

Serves 6-10

  • 2 1/2 quarts tomato juice
  • 3 cups Absolut Pepper vodka
  • 1 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 cup prepared horseradish
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons celery salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons granulated garlic
  • 2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce (we like Frank's RedHot)
  • 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup pickled pepper juice
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Garnish:

  • Fancy smoked oysters
  • Pickled okra
  • Scallions
  • Lemon wedges

Combine all ingredients except cilantro in large pitcher; stir. Refrigerate 8 hours to overnight. Assemble garnishes on long wooden skewers, using each ingredient on every skewer. Stir in cilantro just before serving and serve with skewers arranged on a plate.

Chesapeake Chipotle Pork

Serves 6

Rub:

  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 3 tablespoons chipotle chile powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 4 tablespoons brown sugar

  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 2/3 cups barbecue sauce
  • 2 pork tenderloins, 3/4 pounds each

In a large resealable plastic bag, combine rub ingredients. Place tenderloins in bag and shake, coating meat evenly. Refrigerate for 2 hours to overnight.

In small bowl combine honey, barbecue sauce and Dijon mustard. Preheat grill for medium-high heat. Lightly oil grill grate and place meat on grate. Cover and cook for about 20 minutes, turning and basting with barbecue sauce mixture every 4 minutes, until the tenderloin reaches an internal temperature of at least 140 degrees F. Remove from grill, cover loosely with foil and allow to rest 10 minutes before slicing.