Tiki torches. Soft drum music and the sound of waves crashing in the distance. A light breeze wafting the scents of grilled deliciousness past you. Isn’t that how every cookout should be?
Unfortunately for those of us not lucky enough to live on an idyllic pacific island, the majority of the year is not suitable for outdoor dining. After six to eight months huddled inside under too many layers, the idea of summer’s warmth is powerfully intoxicating. You can almost forget that when summer finally arrives it is humid, blindingly hot, and generally not all that pleasant. But we hold out for the perfect day when we can pull out the grill and sit outside enjoying fresh food and good company till the sunlight fades.
When it rains on your graduation, hits the low 60s during your Memorial Day or fourth of July BBQ, or hails on an otherwise gorgeous afternoon, you need a little creative thinking to roll with the situation. You can take the visualization approach, or you can just fake it till you make it with an island-tastic summer cookout menu.
Hawaiian Cookout Menu
- Mahi Mahi Burgers
- with Mango Salsa
- and Avocado Spread
- Blue Corn Chips
- Grilled Pineapple Slices
- Caramelized Grilled Bananas
- Haupia (Hawaiian coconut milk pudding)
It is easiest to serve the burgers pre-assembled with mahi mahi and sauce on each bun and let your guests add their own spread, salsa, and/or pineapple. Banana leaves or bamboo plates make a great touch while tiki torches and leis from your local party store will get your guests in the festive mood.
- mins 1-10: Make the sauce for the fish, syrup for the bananas, and the haupia inside on the stove top.
- mins 11-15: Make the mango salsa and avocado spread. Set out for with chips guests.
- mins 16-20: Cut the pineapple into rings and mahi mahi into burger sized pieces.
- mins 20-27: Grill the fish and pineapple slices and toast the buns for the burgers.
When dinner is wrapping up
- mins 28-30: Grill the bananas and heat up the haupia.