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Daniel Bear Hunley's Ultimate Summer BBQDaniel Bear Hunley is a Southern man with a big smile and big ambition. Named one of "Time Magazine"’s Top 30 Style Pinners, Daniel has also been featured in the Huffington Post and Mashable.com. An Internet junkie, music enthusiast, creative cook, and trend watcher, Daniel shares his passion for travel, food, and style with his Pinterest audience from his home in Nashville, TN. The grill master himself sat down and shared with us his 20 best tips for the ultimate summer BBQ -- be careful not to drool on your keyboard.
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My ultimate summer BBQ starts off with the perfect burger. And the best way to top a burger with a bit of the South is by adding a dollop of pimiento cheese on top.
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The party doesn’t start till the lawn games come out of the garage. Cornhole is a game played by tossing a beanbag into the hole on your opponent’s board. It can get highly competitive -- don’t say you weren’t warned.
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Peach-and-Bourbon Barbecue Sauce
I’m a Southern guy, and there’s nothing that gets my magnolias blooming like BBQ, peaches, and bourbon. Combine them and you’ve found my kryptonite.
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When most people think of what summer smells like, they’ll tell you cut grass, a chlorinated pool, or maybe citronella. Me? I think of charcoal and seared steak.
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These shrimp take a plunge in to some silver tequila and citrus before making their way onto the grill. There’s a good chance this grill master will be taking a plunge into the tequila as well.
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Grilled Mixed Peppers and Onions
A grilled feast is only as good as the side dishes. I am a big fan of a classic mix of brightly colored peppers and onions.
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Create Party Lighting
The ambience of your summer BBQ can be punched up by taking a strand of Christmas lights and adding a custom touch. These kinds of details take an evening from good to great.
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Grilled Corn with Sour Cream and Cotija Cheese
Your ears of corn belong on the grill. After they’re nice and colored, cover them with sour cream and a salty Mexican cheese called Cotija. It’s the perfect side dish for your summer bash.
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Fruit Salad Ice Pops
These bright fruit salad ice pops are the perfect sweet, chilly treat to fight the heat in the backyard. Make them in advance and keep them on hand just in case all summer long.
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Color-Coded Party Drink Buckets
Guests to your backyard summer party will appreciate attention to detail. Put the wine in either red or white buckets to quickly inform guests what type of wine they’ll find.
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Make use of what you can find in the backyard. Broad leaves will make excellent coasters for any specialty drinks you’ll be serving at your ultimate summer BBQ.
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Last summer I lived with an Argentine friend and was lucky to be introduced to chimichurri. This tasty blend of herbs and oil is a perfect sauce to slather on steak kebabs with the freshest summer vegetables.
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All-Purpose Spice Rub
My uncle is a professional BBQ’er. He taught me a lesson I’ll never forget. Great meat starts with a great rub.
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Grilling burgers? Punch up your basic condiments with a little something extra. I’m a sauce guy and love these simple mayos for making my burgers fancy.
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Serve something light and fresh to balance all of your heavy meats -- a salad made of herbs and heirloom tomatoes. Each heirloom tomato differs in taste, so make sure you grab a few types to give this fresh salad a wide range of flavors.
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Make a Drop-Down Bar for Extra Space
My backyard has plenty of yard space, but I need a little counter space for setting out all the food and fixings when I throw a big party. This drop-down bar is super easy to install and will hold up in the summer sun.
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Balsamic Portobello Burgers with Bell Pepper and Goat Cheese
I have my fair share of vegetarian friends whom I truly love. Make sure when planning your big event that you have vegetarian options that are just as exciting as your main offering. These balsamic portobello burgers look so delicious, you might need to make a few extra just in case a few of your carnivores decide to switch teams for the afternoon.
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Grilled Shrimp and Chorizo on Skewers
Spicy chorizo sausage is one of my favorite foods on the planet. Pair it with sweet, tender shrimp for a truly tasty pairing.
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A warm, lit centerpiece will provide a great glow as the BBQ continues into the night. I love the idea of mixing various shaped apothecary bottles and wicks on a cake stand.
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