Labor Day will be here before you know it, marking the unofficial end of summer and giving us good reason to take it easy for a three-day weekend. The holiday's original intent was to celebrate the American worker with a respite from our 9-to-5 lives, and we Americans like to do this with lots of grilling and eating. Novice and seasoned grillers alike are looking for inspiration to make their cookout a hit, and the good news is there's plenty of inspiration to be found right on your TV.
The Food Network is ripe with TV shows that can give you new ideas for both your barbecue and grilling menus. Technology has taken both cooking and television viewing to new places—you can now view, save and follow along with your favorite cooking shows from your mobile device right alongside your grill, according to install-direct-tv.com. From shows focused on grilling to expert chefs exploring grilling as one of the tools in their arsenal, here are three of the standouts to get you ready for Labor Day weekend:
'Bobby Flay's Barbecue Addiction'
"Bobby Flay's Barbecue Addiction" takes outdoor grilling to places it's never been before, combining expert grilling techniques with gourmet, flavor-packed ingredients from all around the world. With innovative grilled dishes like an open-faced Jack-and-flank-steak barbecue sandwich, pizza with honey-laced hummus, a New York strip steak pizza with bleu cheese or perfectly grilled peaches for dessert, Flay's creativity is exciting and inspiring to watch. There's even a side dish of potato chips with a mouth-watering bleu cheese and Cabrales cheese dip. Flay cooks swiftly and with confidence. Watching him, you can pick up his moves. He actually makes gourmet grilling look easy; just don't be daunted by the need to shop at gourmet grocery stores and specialty cheese shops for your ingredients.
'Guy Fieri: Diners, Drive Ins and Dives' / 'Guy's Big Bite'
For a louder, edgier and free-spirited approach to cooking, check out these shows hosted by Guy Fieri. While the "Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives" show (aka. "Triple D") does not feature detailed cooking processes or give recipes on the air, there's loads of grilling inspiration to be found. In "Guy's Big Bite," Fieri fires up the grill to make his Santa Maria Tri-Tip. It's a big, hefty piece of prime beef that's generously seasoned and seared to perfection and served with his special baked beans and Guy's Smokin’ Potato Salad.
'Trisha Yearwood's Southern Kitchen'
Trisha Yearwood's cooking show is a celebration of both food and family. She brings her cookbooks to life with family members as guest cooks to enhance the warm, down-home vibe. Using her recipes as scripts, the show includes a healthy approach, too; for example, Trisha shows viewers a way to make ricotta cheese out of tofu (put it in the food processor with basil and olive oil.) Trisha's Thai salad is a great side for your summer cookout, and other great picnic recipes are sprinkled throughout the series. Consider her Blueberry and Nectarine Cobbler for dessert or Grilled Summer Fruits served with ice cream. The grilling caramelizes the sugars in the fruit for an unforgettable summer treat. She also demonstrates an easy ice cream sandwich cake and how to make your own homemade ice cream.