Memorial Day Countdown... Get Your Grill On

Instant Grit

COUNTDOWN TO SUMMER! Your Grit guide to Charleston's golden season

MONDAY: Summertime Dos & Don'ts

TUESDAY: The Best of Poolside



WEDNESDAY: Get Your Grill On


So now that you're in the mood for summer, it's time to fuel the fire even more. If you need Memorial Day meal ideas, get the grill ready and read on! We've got a roundup of kabobs perfect for any backyard bash.


{*More recipes to come throughout the summer! From burgers and fish dishes to light salads and desserts... we'll cover it all!*}


Photographs by Gayle Brooker

Food styling by Cynthia Groseclose

Recipes by Heather Garvin



Honey Mustard Potato Brochettes

(Makes 4-6 servings)



2 lbs. (about 30) baby red potatoes (or quartered medium potatoes)

1/4 cup diced white onion

2 Tbsp. Dijon mustard

2 Tbsp. cider vinegar

2 tsp. honey

1/4 tsp. paprika

1/4 cup vegetable oil

4- to 6-inch bamboo or metal skewers


Directions: Boil potatoes until lightly tender. Drain and allow to cool completely. Chill for at least one hour. Meanwhile, combine onion, mustard, vinegar, honey, and paprika in a food processor. Pulse 3-4 times until onion is minced. With machine running, add in oil until just emulsified. (Potatoes and dressing can be prepared up to one day in advance.) Preheat grill to medium heat. Thread 5-6 chilled potatoes onto skewers and brush all sides with dressing. Place skewers over direct heat, turning and basting with additional dressing occasionally, until browned and tender, about 6-8 minutes total. Serve immediately with remaining dressing served alongside, if desired.


Chef's note: If using wooden skewers, soak in water for 5 minutes and pat dry before using.  Also, to ensure even cooking, always make sure your foods are cut in uniform sizes on each skewer.


What's in it? 260 calories, 11g total fat, (1.5g sat. fat), 160mg sodium, 36g carbohydrates, 2g fiber, 4g protein



Balsamic Peach Chicken Kabobs

(Makes 4-6 servings)



3/4 cup balsamic vinegar

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard

1 tsp. sugar

1/2 tsp. cracked black pepper

1/4 tsp. kosher salt

2 Tbsp. olive oil, plus extra for brushing

4- to 6-inch bamboo or metal skewers

2 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into 1- 1 ½ ” pieces

2-3 fresh ripe peaches


Directions: Whisk the vinegar, garlic, mustard, sugar, and seasonings together until salt and sugar are dissolved. Whisk in olive oil. Pour into a large Ziploc bag and add cubed chicken. Squeeze all the air out, then seal tightly and toss to coat. Marinate for 6-8 hours or overnight. Pit the peaches and cut each into 4-6 even wedges. Brush lightly with olive oil. Alternating between chicken and peaches, thread the fruit and meat onto the skewers. Prepare grill to medium-high heat. Coat grill rack with nonstick cooking spray. Cook kabobs over direct heat, turning skewers after 4 minutes. Continue cooking until peaches are slightly charred and chicken is cooked through, another 4-5 minutes. Serve immediately.


What's in it? 330 calories, 8g total fat, (1.5g sat. fat), 105mg cholesterol, 290mg sodium, 18g carbohydrates, 1g fiber, 43g protein



Benne Seed Shrimp Skewers with Chili Dipping Sauce

(Makes 4-6 servings)


For the Sauce:

1 ½ cup chopped red bell pepper

2 cloves garlic

¼ tsp. hot chili sauce such as Sambal

3 Tbsp. light mayonnaise

1 ½ pounds (21/25 count) shrimp, peeled & deveined, tails removed

1 Tbsp. lemon juice

2 Tbsp. water

1 1-oz. container sesame seeds

4- to 6-inch bamboo or metal skewers


Directions: Combine all sauce ingredients in a food processor and purée. Chill before serving. Thread 4-5 shrimp lengthwise onto each skewer, so the skewer goes through the head and tail and lays flat. Combine lemon juice and water in a long shallow dish; pour sesame seeds into another shallow dish alongside. Dip each side of the skewer into the liquid and then into the seeds. Place each in a single layer on a large plate or baking pan before transferring to the grill. Prepare the grill to medium heat and coat with nonstick cooking spray. Place shrimp skewers crosswise across the grate and cook over direct heat, rotating skewers occasionally to prevent seeds from burning. Cook until shrimp are opaque, 3-4 minutes per side. Serve warm alongside dipping sauce. 


What's in it? 230 calories, 8g total fat, (1g sat. fat), 210mg cholesterol, 290mg sodium, 6g carbohydrates, 2g fiber, 30g protein 



Grilled Ratatouille Skewers

(Makes 4-6 servings)



1 small eggplant, peeled and halved, cut into 1-inch pieces

2 small zucchini, halved, cut into 1-inch pieces

2 bell peppers, seeded, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 large red onion, peeled and cut into wedges

2 ½ Tbsp. olive oil, divided

3 Tbsp. freshly chopped basil or oregano, divided
10-12 cherry tomatoes

Freshly grated parmesan

Nonstick vegetable spray

4- to 6-inch bamboo or metal skewers


Directions: Combine cut eggplant, zucchini, peppers, and onions in a large bowl. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and 2 ½ tablespoons of the fresh herbs. Toss lightly with hands to coat. In a separate bowl, toss the tomatoes with remaining oil and herbs. Thread vegetables (except tomatoes) onto skewers in an alternating pattern, leaving room for tomatoes at the end of each skewer. Prepare grill to high heat and coat the rack with nonstick vegetable spray. Cook skewers over direct heat for 3-4 minutes per side. Add cherry tomatoes onto the end of each skewer and continue cooking until tomatoes begin to blister and vegetables are tender, another 1-2 minutes per side. Transfer to serving platter and sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan. Serve immediately.


What's in it? 130 calories, 8g total fat, (1.5g sat. fat), 35mg sodium, 13g carbohydrates, 5g fiber, 3g protein



Summer Must-Haves: The Cocktall



If summer were a drink, it'd be the Painkiller—we mean Gamechanger—from Fiery Ron's Home Team BBQ. With rum, pineapple juice, and orange juice, this cocktail's delicious. And if it's tastiness weren't enough, the fact that Home Team's Sullivan's Island branch serves its large-sized Gamechanger in a Styrofoam cup (making it quite convenient to carry with you to the beach...), makes it even more of a winner.


Make Your Own! 

With this recipe that's been tasted and approved by the Grit team... {Recipe was altered to make frozen}

The Painkiller
(Serves 1-2)

2-4 oz. dark rum
4 oz. pineapple juice
1 oz. cream of coconut
1 oz. orange juice
Grated fresh nutmeg

Pour first four ingredients into a blender with ice and blend. Garnish with nutmeg.