Buffalo Wings using the Vortex

I love the Vortex insert. I’ve had one for quite a while, using it to cook entire family packs of great chicken wings on my Weber Performer grill. But sometimes I don’t need 4 or so pounds of wings. I just need to cook enough for one or two people. That’s where the smaller Vortex comes in. It fits perfectly into my Weber Smokey Joe grill, making for some dynamite buffalo wings!
Buffalo Wings using the VortexOf course you can use the Vortex for more than just Buffalo wings, and on more than just a charcoal grill, but I bought mine to make wings. Wings. Wings. And more wings. And it does wings great. Super high heat makes for super crispy tasty wings in the end, with about as little effort as you can possibly get.

5 from 1 reviews
Buffalo Wings using the Vortex
Author: 
Recipe type: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2-4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • A Vortex
  • 2 pounds chicken wings, flats and drumettes (tips saved for making broth)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Buffalo seasoning
  • Frank's wing sauce
Instructions
  1. Place the wings into a large resealable container or baggie.
  2. Add the oil and seasoning. Seal and shake to coat well.
  3. Refrigerate for 3 hours.
  4. Light a charcoal chimney full of charcoal. Alternatively, you can fill your Vortex with charcoal and light them inside the unit.
  5. Let the charcoal get fully ashed over.
  6. Place the Vortex into the center of your grill and add in the charcoal.
  7. Open the bottom vents on your grill by 1/3, while keeping the top vent open completely.
  8. Close the gill and let it get hot, about 15 minutes.
  9. Add the chicken as shown in the picture above. For the flats have the skin side up, and for the drumettes keep the meaty part away from the fire.
  10. Close the grill and cook for 15 minutes.
  11. Rotate the lid 90 degrees and cook for another 15 minutes.
  12. Flip the wings. Rotate another 90 degrees and cook 15 more minutes.
  13. Check if the wings are as crispy as you like. If not, rotate another 90 degrees and cook another 15 minutes.
  14. Brush the wings with wing sauce and cook 5 more minutes.
  15. Flip wings and brush with more wing sauce. Cook 5 more minutes.
  16. Transfer wings to a bowl and toss with more wing sauce, if desired.
  17. Serve with dipping sauce.

Grilled Brussels Sprouts

It’s bordering on crazy just how many times I made these grilled Brussels sprouts this week. They instantly became a favorite in our household. They take no time at all to make and make for the perfect very-flavorful side dish for a meal of grilled anything!

The original recipe calls for skewering the Brussels sprouts. I find it easier to just dump the sprouts into a stainless steel vegetable grill basket. I don’t have to worry about the sprouts spinning around or falling off.
You can use the same approach for grilling Brussels sprouts for other vegetables, such as small red or yellow potatoes or asparagus. Just partially cook (microwave) them first until slightly tender, add the seasonings, and grill until lightly charred and tender. Done!

5 from 1 reviews
Grilled Brussels Sprouts
Author: 
Recipe type: Side
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2-4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1 pound Brussels sprouts
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Pinch (or more) red pepper flake
Instructions
  1. Fire up your grill for medium-heat cooking.
  2. Cut off the stems from the Brussels sprouts and remove any loose leaves.
  3. Place sprouts in a large microwavable bowl and microwave on high for 3 minutes, stopping halfway through to stir.
  4. Carefully remove the bowl from the microwave.
  5. Combine the remaining ingredients and pour over the sprouts. Toss to coat.
  6. Transfer the sprouts to a grill basket (optionally you can skewer them) and transfer to your grill.
  7. Grill for 5 minutes. Stir and grill another 5 minutes or until the sprouts have a nice char on them.

Grilled Radishes

Not many folks think about grilling radishes. But, they have a certain ‘wow’ factor when you serve them. They look like baby beets or turnips. Grilling them mellows them a bit, making them nice and sweet and really quite addicting. Grilled radishes are a nice change from the way radishes are normally served: cold on top of a green salad.
You can also serve grilled radishes cold. Just cook them them put them into a container in the fridge for a few hours to cool. They’re great on salads. You expect that cold, almost spicy, radish flavor but instead get something much more mellow and totally different. It’s a welcome change.

5 from 1 reviews
Grilled Radishes
Author: 
Recipe type: Side
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1 pound large radishes, sliced thin
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 ice cube
Instructions
  1. Fire up your grill for direct grilling.
  2. Tear off a large piece of aluminum foil.
  3. Add radishes to the center of the foil. Sprinkle with the garlic, butter, and salt and pepper.
  4. Top the radishes with the ice cube.
  5. Fold the edges of the foil over and pinch to seal.
  6. Place on the grill for 20 minutes or until tender.
  7. Serve immediately with more salt and pepper.

Grilled Cream Corn with Gorgonzola Cheese

Wow. I grew up eating a lot of canned cream corn. This isn’t that cream corn. This is something completely special and beyond delicious. From the first bite Anita and I just looked at each other. It was the ‘oh my goodness this is fantastic’ look. Grilled cream corn with a creamy Gorgonzola cheese sauce that is incredible. I can’t say enough just how much we enjoyed this dish.
Grilled Cream Corn with Gorzonzola CheeseIf you can’t get fresh corn-on-the-cob you can substitute canned corn. Just drain it well first and spread it out on a baking dish and place under the broiler until it starts to char just a bit. Or you can actually skip the roasting and just use the corn right out of the can (after draining).

Grilled Cream Corn with Gorzgonzola Cheese
Author: 
Recipe type: Side
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 8 ears corn-on-the-cob, shucked
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 cup crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
  • Fresh parsley, chopped, for garnish
Instructions
  1. Fire up your grill for cooking over direct heat.
  2. Lightly brush the corn with oil and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Place over direct heat and grill until just tender and lightly charred, rotating often.
  4. Remove corn and let cool slightly before cutting off the kernels using a sharp knife.
  5. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.
  6. Add the corn. Add more salt and pepper, to taste, if needed.
  7. Stir and cook until the corn is completely tender, 3-4 minutes.
  8. Stir in the cornstarch and cook another minute.
  9. Add the cream and bring to a simmer. Stir for 2-3 minutes until thickened.
  10. Pour half of the corn mixture into a blender. Let cool slightly then puree until smooth. Return to the skillet with the rest of the corn.
  11. Add the milk and cheese and stir.
  12. Serve warm garnished with chopped parsley.

 

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Grilled corn with Sriracha Mayonnaise

I’m a big fan of flavored mayonnaise on grilled sweet corn. Specially when it is nice and spicy, with just a hint of citrus. Like this Sriracha mayonnaise. All of my favorite things in a creamy sauce slathered over corn. Get a napkin or two, because you’re definitely going to need them.
grilled-corn-with-sriracha-mayonnaiseThe Sriracha mayo isn’t just great on corn either. It’s fantastic on grilled chicken or turkey burgers. Leave out the lime and slather it on hamburger buns. And if you’re into dipping your fries in mayonnaise, this one will definitely wake you up.

Grilled corn with Sriracha Mayonnaise
Author: 
Recipe type: Side
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 4 ears fresh corn, shucked, cut in half if desired
  • Vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons Sriracha
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder, plus more for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish
Instructions
  1. Preheat a grill to medium-high heat.
  2. Lightly brush the corn with oil.
  3. Place on grill, turning often, until the corn is cooked and lightly charred.
  4. Whisk together the mayo, Sriracha, lime juice and chili powder.
  5. Brush corn with the mayo mixture and garnish with a few sprinkles of chili powder and chopped cilantro.

 

Spicy Grilled Mushrooms

At first I thought maybe I just loved these spicy grilled mushrooms so much because I hadn’t grilled mushrooms in a while. Or maybe it was because of the full moon. But no, it was because these are now officially my favorite mushrooms. They have a perfect light Asian flavor, with a little vinegar tang and, as with everything I make, a little spicy kick. My goodness they were just delicious.
spicy-grilled-mushroomsI used cremini mushrooms, also known as baby portobellos. You can use any mushrooms you like, even mix a few different kinds in. Just remember that the smaller ones will cook faster, so you might have to move them away from the hottest part of your grill before the bigger ones get done.

Spicy Grilled Mushrooms
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-10 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • Hot sauce, to taste
  • 2 pounds small mushrooms, stems removed if desired
Instructions
  1. Whisk together the soy sauce, red wine vinegar, pepper and hot sauce in a large bowl.
  2. Add the mushrooms.
  3. Let marinade for 1 hour, turning occasionally.
  4. Fire up your grill.
  5. Shake off any excess marinade from the mushrooms and grill for 10 minutes until starting to soften.

Copycat Quarter Pounders with Cheese

After making a copycat of the Arch Deluxe burger from McDonald’s, I could not stop jonesin’ for a good version of my all-time favorite fast-food burger, the Quarter Pounder with cheese. Simple but tasty. Sure, I might have cheated a bit and actually made a Third Pounder cheese burger, but hey, that just means I had more yumminess!
copycat-quarter-pounders-with-cheeseIt wasn’t until after my teen years that I also became a fan of the Big Mac, which I’ve made at home several times. And now that I think about them, I’m going to have to make them again, and soon. Want an even bigger Big Mac? Try my Big Mac hoagies. Yep, that’s right, all the great flavors of a Big Mac on a big ole hoagie bun. Not into big Big Macs? My Big Mac sliders are perfect for a party.

Copycat Quarter Pounders with Cheese
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2 servings
 
Ingredients
For the burgers
  • 2 1/4 pound burger patties (to keep it authentic use pre-made patties from your grocery store)
  • 2 sesame seed burger patties
  • 4 slices American cheese (get the deli style, it's a bit thicker and tastier)
  • Prepared yellow mustard
  • Ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons white onion, finely chopped
  • 4 dill pickle slices
For the burger seasoning (makes enough for several burgers)
  • 4 tablespoons Kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons Accent
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
Instructions
  1. Combine the seasoning ingredients.
  2. Season both sides of the patties.
  3. Cook your patties in a hot skillet or on a griddle.
  4. Top each patty with a slice of cheese.
  5. Toast the buns.
  6. Add the patties to the bun bottoms.
  7. Squirt 5 little dots of mustard around the patties.
  8. Do the same with the ketchup.
  9. Add 1 tablespoon of onion and 2 pickle slices to each patty.
  10. Top each patty with another slice of cheese.
  11. Add bun top and serve.

BBQ Pulled Pork Poutine

I’m a big fan of poutine. It’s definitely one of my favorite dishes. I’ve made it the classic way (fries, curds, gravy) many times. This time I thought I’d try a totally different approach to poutine and top the fries with smoked BBQ pulled pork instead. A handful or two of curds and a pickle garnish and I was in poutine heaven again.
There’s really no way to improve on this BBQ pulled pork poutine. Every bite was flat-out delicious. I used spicy hot pepper cheese curds, but I think any flavor (other maybe curds infused with herbs such as rosemary or thyme) would work perfectly.

As an aside, on the off chance that you have a little leftover pulled pork and curds, make a few baked potatoes and top them with the meat and cheese. You won’t be sorry.

5 from 1 reviews
BBQ Pulled Pork Poutine
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6 servings
 
The amounts below can be changed to suit your tastes. I didn't measure anything very closely, I just went for it. You can't mess this up so don't worry about amounts so much.
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 pounds frozen French fries, cooked per package instructions (or use fresh-made)
  • 1 cup BBQ pulled pork, warmed
  • 1 cup cheese curds (I used hot pepper curds)
  • 1 1/2 pounds frozen French fries, cooked per package instructions (or use fresh-made)
  • 1 cup bread-and-butter pickles, diced
Instructions
  1. Spread the fries out onto a large platter.
  2. Add pulled pork and cheese curds.
  3. Drizzle with the BBQ sauce and garnish with the pickles.
  4. Devour.