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Summer Q

Go ahead, invite people over. Our ready-to-host soirées are wow-worthy and delicious—and easy to pull off, we promise. Read on for recipes, chef’s tips, ta-da presentation tricks and shortcuts. Who’s going to have fun at this party? You.

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Summer Q
Yes, it’s a cookout, but you’re (mostly) off the hook from grill duty. Our mouthwatering short-rib barbecue dinner is a welcome change from burgers and hot dogs, and it’s easier than it looks thanks to a cook-ahead trick that saves you hours on party day. All the meat needs is a quick sear over the fire right before you present the platter, and guests will love customizing their plates as they pick and choose from your lineup of easy homemade sauces, salad and spiked popsicles.

Summer Q: Drink | Ribs | Salad | Dessert | Recipes

Spice up your margaritas.

Honeydew and Cucumber Margarita with Lime Zest and Salt
This light, refreshing drink brightens up our meat-centric menu with crisp citrus notes to play off of the sweet tang in the barbecue sauces.

Peach and Yellow Tomato Margarita
Our simple, seasonal spin on a classic margarita uses what’s available in your garden or in season at your local farmer’s market to celebrate summer. The sweetness of the peach and acidity of the tomato cut through savory sauces and smoky meats.

Honeydew and Cucumber margarita popsicles in stemless wine glasses

Margarita Popsicles
Turn cocktails into popsicles. Reduce the tequila in either margarita recipe by 1/3 and allow the mixture to freeze overnight. Add diced cantaloupe and pickled red chili rings before freezing for a more appealing presentation and textural contrast. For a non-alcoholic kid-friendly option, just cut the booze altogether and freeze.

Party Tip: Who goes to a BBQ without drinking beer? We recommend cold, refreshing Summer Ale for its snappy, clean bitterness and a bright, floral aroma to cut through the rich bold flavors from the grill. Plan 1.5 drinks per person per hour.

Get set to grill.

Braised ribes on a platter with barbecue sauce

First things first: make friends with your butcher. For this dish, you should request a beef short plate. Not sure if he’ll have the cut on hand? Call a few days ahead and ask to reserve one. Next, remember that you can braise the ribs—which fully cooks them—up to five days in advance. On the day of the party, “grilling” really just means caramelizing and reheating. (It also adds a dramatic flourish and will infuse the air with wafts of smoky goodness.)

Barbecue braised ribs sliders on a slate cheese board

Party Tip: Create a slider station by pulling the meat off the bone and serving alongside grilled potato buns and barbecue sauce. Or, present the ribs whole on a platter for a more dramatic look.

Serve up the essence of summer.


Tomatoes at the height of summer ripeness are sweet enough to pair with their in-season friends: peaches, corn and cucumbers. Their rich colors play beautifully together against a brick of bright white feta cheese and can be served segmented or tossed, for a more traditional salad presentation.

Portobello mushroom roast with roasted asparagus on a long serving dish

Build a beautiful dessert.

Vanilla, Passion Fruit and Strawberry Parfait served in a large glass jar

What tastes like summer? Strawberries and cream. Our stunning layered dessert requires no baking—just artful layering of simply prepared, fresh ingredients.

Chef’s Tip: Carefully layer in and garnish with a few edible flowers for beautiful pops of color and fun.

Find more CrateParty menus in the entertaining section of our blog, plus find everything you need to host on crateandbarrel.com.

Print Recipe
Braised Short Ribs
Votes: 6
Rating: 4
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Servings
6-8
Ingredients
  • 5-6 bone-in beef short ribs
  • Salt and cracked black pepper to taste
  • 1 cup carrot diced
  • 1 cup onion diced
  • 6 garlic cloves roughly chopped
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 1 cup barbecue sauce
Servings
6-8
Ingredients
  • 5-6 bone-in beef short ribs
  • Salt and cracked black pepper to taste
  • 1 cup carrot diced
  • 1 cup onion diced
  • 6 garlic cloves roughly chopped
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 1 cup barbecue sauce
Votes: 6
Rating: 4
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Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Season ribs very well with salt and pepper. In hot, oiled pan, sear ribs over high heat, until golden and brown, 5 minutes on each side. Remove ribs from pan; set aside. Add diced carrots, onion and garlic to pan and sauté until golden and tender, 5–7 minutes. Return meat to pan and partly cover with beef stock and barbecue sauce. Roast in oven until tender and meat is almost falling off bones, 2 1/2–3 1/2 hours. Remove ribs and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Heat large grill pan over high heat, grill ribs until charred in some places and brush with barbecue sauce until thick crust forms, 10–15 minutes. Serve.

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Quick Pickling Liquid
Votes: 2
Rating: 3.5
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Servings
2 cups
Ingredients
  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 sprig tarragon
Servings
2 cups
Ingredients
  • 1 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 sprig tarragon
Votes: 2
Rating: 3.5
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Instructions
  1. In large saucepan, combine vinegar, sugar, water, salt and tarragon, and bring to boil. Fill jar with any vegetable you wish to pickle and pour pickling liquid over them. Refrigerate for at least 24 hours.

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Honeydew and Cucumber Margarita with Lime Zest and Salt
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Servings
6
Ingredients
  • 1 honeydew melon
  • 2 cucumbers
  • 1/4 cup triple sec
  • 1/4 cup tequila
  • 2 limes zested
  • sea salt to serve
Servings
6
Ingredients
  • 1 honeydew melon
  • 2 cucumbers
  • 1/4 cup triple sec
  • 1/4 cup tequila
  • 2 limes zested
  • sea salt to serve
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Instructions
  1. Remove honeydew rind and roughly chop melon, reserving some cubes for serving. Peel cucumbers and cut into 2-inch slices, reserving some thinly sliced rounds for serving. Purée melon pieces and 2-inch cucumber slices in food processor until smooth. Strain in large mesh sieve.
  2. In pitcher, combine purée with triple sec and tequila; add honeydew cubes and cucumber slices. Top with lime zest and sprinkle with sea salt.
How to make frozen pops:
  1. To turn your Honeydew and Cucumber Margarita into a frozen pop, reduce tequila, using 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon. (Or remove alcohol altogether for a kid-friendly version.) Divide liquid into frozen pop molds and add a few honeydew cubes and cucumber slices to each mold; freeze overnight.

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Peach and Yellow Tomato Margarita
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Servings
6
Ingredients
  • 6 ripe yellow peaches
  • 4 large yellow tomatoes (or 1 pint yellow grape tomatoes) reserve a few wedges for garnish
  • 1/4 cup triple sec
  • 1/4 cup tequila
  • 1 lime cut in half
  • Chili salt (either store-bought or made by mixing sea salt and Espelette Pepper)
  • Red chilies sliced into rounds and pickled (see Quick Pickling Liquid)
Servings
6
Ingredients
  • 6 ripe yellow peaches
  • 4 large yellow tomatoes (or 1 pint yellow grape tomatoes) reserve a few wedges for garnish
  • 1/4 cup triple sec
  • 1/4 cup tequila
  • 1 lime cut in half
  • Chili salt (either store-bought or made by mixing sea salt and Espelette Pepper)
  • Red chilies sliced into rounds and pickled (see Quick Pickling Liquid)
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Instructions
  1. Peel peaches and roughly chop. Combine peaches and yellow tomatoes in blender and blend until smooth. Strain in large mesh sieve.
  2. In pitcher, combine purée with triple sec and tequila.
  3. Run lime around edges of margarita glasses and dip glass rims into chili salt. Add large ice cubes to each glass.
  4. Serve in salt-rimmed margarita glasses garnished with pickled chili rounds and yellow tomato wedges.
How to make frozen pops:
  1. To turn your Peach and Yellow Tomato Margarita into a frozen pop, reduce tequila, using 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon. (Or remove alcohol altogether for a kid-friendly version.) Divide liquid into frozen pop molds and sprinkle with chili salt and a few pickled chili rounds; freeze overnight.

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Herb Chimichurri
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Servings
1 cup
Ingredients
  • 1 teaspoon shallots coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves chopped
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup Basil
  • 1/2 cup Parsley
  • 1/2 cup oregano
  • 1/2 cup tarragon
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon juiced
Servings
1 cup
Ingredients
  • 1 teaspoon shallots coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves chopped
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup Basil
  • 1/2 cup Parsley
  • 1/2 cup oregano
  • 1/2 cup tarragon
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon juiced
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Instructions
  1. Combine shallots, garlic, vinegar, basil, parsley, oregano, tarragon, olive oil and lemon juice in food processor and process until combined, adding more oil as needed. Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.

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Peach and Yellow Bell Pepper Barbecue Sauce
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Servings
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup yellow pepper diced
  • 1 cup onion diced
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon ginger grated
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 2 ripe yellow peaches diced
Servings
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup yellow pepper diced
  • 1 cup onion diced
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon ginger grated
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 2 ripe yellow peaches diced
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Instructions
  1. In fry pan, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add yellow pepper, onion, garlic and ginger to pan, stir to combine and cook until tender, 4–6 minutes. Add vinegar and peaches, continue to cook until reduced by a third, 5–7 minutes. Pour mixture into food processor and process until smooth. Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Recipe Notes

Can be made and stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days.


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Whiskey Barbecue Sauce
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Servings
1 cup
Ingredients
  • 1 cup barbecue sauce
  • 1 ounce whiskey
  • 1 lime juiced
Servings
1 cup
Ingredients
  • 1 cup barbecue sauce
  • 1 ounce whiskey
  • 1 lime juiced
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Instructions
  1. Combine barbecue sauce and whiskey. Add lime juice to taste. Serve. Store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Recipe Notes

Can be made and stored in an airtight container for up to 5 days.


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Tomato and Peach Salad
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Servings
6-8
Ingredients
For the salad
  • 2 ears of corn
  • 4 ripe yellow peaches very thinly sliced into rounds
  • 4 plum tomatoes very thinly sliced into rounds
  • 2 Persian cucumbers cut into ribbons
  • 1 wedge of Greek feta cheese to serve
  • 1 bunch mint leaves to serve
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
For the dressing
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 basil leaves finely chopped
Servings
6-8
Ingredients
For the salad
  • 2 ears of corn
  • 4 ripe yellow peaches very thinly sliced into rounds
  • 4 plum tomatoes very thinly sliced into rounds
  • 2 Persian cucumbers cut into ribbons
  • 1 wedge of Greek feta cheese to serve
  • 1 bunch mint leaves to serve
  • Sea salt and pepper to taste
For the dressing
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 basil leaves finely chopped
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Instructions
  1. Heat grill pan over high heat. Brush corn with olive oil and grill on all sides until charred and cooked through, 5–7 minutes.
  2. For dressing, combine vinegar, oil and basil. Shake.
  3. Arrange peach and tomato slices and cucumber ribbons on serving platter, top with wedge of feta and drizzle with red wine vinegar dressing. Scatter with mint leaves and season with salt and pepper to taste.

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Portobello Mushroom “Roast” with Chimichurri and Cheddar
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Servings
6-8
Ingredients
  • 12 large portobello mushrooms
  • 1 cup Herb Chimichurri see recipe
  • 1/2 cup cheddar cheese finely grated
  • salt and pepper to taste
Servings
6-8
Ingredients
  • 12 large portobello mushrooms
  • 1 cup Herb Chimichurri see recipe
  • 1/2 cup cheddar cheese finely grated
  • salt and pepper to taste
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Place mushrooms bottom side up on large baking tray. Top each mushroom with 1 teaspoon of chimichurri and sprinkle each with about 2 teaspoons cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Stack two mushrooms on top of each other sandwich-style with bases together to enclose the “filling.” Roast in oven until tender, 8–10 minutes. Remove from oven, set aside to cool. Once cool enough to handle, tie the 6 “mushroom sandwiches” together with kitchen twine to resemble a roast.
  2. Heat large grill pan over high heat and place “mushroom roast” in pan. Brush mushrooms with olive oil and grill “roast” on all sides, 5–8 minutes. Serve mushrooms “roast-like” on platter, cut into slices.

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Grilled Asparagus
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Servings
6-8
Ingredients
  • 16 asparagus spears
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon zested and juiced
Servings
6-8
Ingredients
  • 16 asparagus spears
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon zested and juiced
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
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Instructions
  1. Snap off bottoms of asparagus spears by hand, eliminating any woody stems. Heat grill pan over high heat. Add asparagus to pan, brush with olive oil and grill on all sides until charred and cooked through, 4–6 minutes. Serve with lemon zest and a sprinkling of lemon juice.

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Vanilla, Passion Fruit and Strawberry Parfait
Votes: 7
Rating: 3
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Servings
6-8
Ingredients
For the vanilla pudding
  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean seeds scraped
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
For the strawberry jelly
  • 2 pints strawberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 8 in titanium gelatin leaves softened in cold water
For the parfait assembly
  • 32 Savoiardi or Lady Finger biscuits
  • 6 passion fruits seeds removed
  • 1 pint strawberries thinly sliced
  • Edible flowers (e.g., violets, marigolds or lavender) to serve
  • Whipped cream to serve
Servings
6-8
Ingredients
For the vanilla pudding
  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean seeds scraped
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
For the strawberry jelly
  • 2 pints strawberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 8 in titanium gelatin leaves softened in cold water
For the parfait assembly
  • 32 Savoiardi or Lady Finger biscuits
  • 6 passion fruits seeds removed
  • 1 pint strawberries thinly sliced
  • Edible flowers (e.g., violets, marigolds or lavender) to serve
  • Whipped cream to serve
Votes: 7
Rating: 3
You:
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Instructions
For the vanilla pudding
  1. In medium saucepan, combine 2 1/2 cups heavy cream, sugar and vanilla seeds over medium-high heat; gently simmer, stirring to dissolve sugar. Cook until just starting to steam, 3–4 minutes. Mix cornstarch with remaining cream and slowly whisk into hot cream mixture until combined.
  2. Let pudding cool slightly, then transfer to medium bowl and cover surface with plastic wrap (to help prevent a skin from forming). Refrigerate overnight or until set.
For the strawberry jelly
  1. In food processor bowl, process strawberries until smooth, then strain through large mesh sieve. In small saucepan, combine strawberry purée, sugar and water over medium heat, stirring until sugar dissolves.
  2. Remove gelatin leaves from soaking water, squeeze out excess water and stir into strawberry mixture until dissolved. Pour strawberry jelly into trifle dish and refrigerate overnight to set.
  3. After strawberry jelly is set, dip biscuits in passion fruit juices until soft but not mushy, 10–20 seconds per side. In trifle dish, layer juice-soaked biscuits on top of strawberry jelly, then half of the vanilla pudding, and line edge of dish with strawberry slices. Add another layer of biscuits and pudding. Finish with edible flowers and final layer of pudding. Serve with whipped cream.

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