Grilling season begins with a flair

The sweet, spicy combination of red chili sauce and mango is one of seven flavor pairings America will be layering on this grilling season, according to experts at Hunt Valley, Md.-based McCormick. In the company's first-ever Grilling Edition of their signature Flavor Forecast, top sizzling pairings and summer flavor trends are identified. They include: Backyard Bistro - The surging popularity of at-home entertaining continues as grillers recreate the foods and flavors from their favorite eateries; Layer It On! - Embrace creativity by merging marinades, rubs, brines, mops, sauces and more; Fired Up Fruit - Grilled fruits skewered alongside meats, pureed to make tenderizing marinades, and chopped for salsas and relishes; Ethnic Sizzle - Nearly every cuisine around the globe claims a place on the grill – especially current favorites like Caribbean, Latin, Thai, Vietnamese and Indian; and Shaken, Stirred & Grilled - Using flavorful spirits in place of vinegars or other liquids paves the way for new combinations like mojito marinades and bourbon-spiked pork tenderloin.

 

The experts at McCormick have identified seven pairings and suggest you try them. They include: Applewood & Plum -- plums accent the smokiness of applewood and add adventurous flair to all-American barbecue. (Applewood Grilled Shrimp & Plum Salad with Cinnamon-Honey Dressing); Cilantro & Lime -- this bright and zingy pair is a refreshing taste of summertime; (Tequila-Lime Skirt Steak with Avocado Chopped Salad); Rosemary & Figfigs are an unexpected and regionally inspired match for aromatic rosemary. (Tuscan Grilled Lamb Chops with Warm White Beans Provençal); Chipotle & Maple -- this culinary comingling delivers an updated take on smoky, spicy and sweet. (Grilled Chipotle-Maple Salmon with Wilted Spinach); Brown Sugar & BourbonThis versatile duo brings a delicious dose of Southern charm to the patio  (Brown Sugar Bourbon Pork Tenderloin with Grilled Cornbread and Peaches); Cinnamon & Coffee – bold and confident, with just the right edge of bitterness. (Cinnamon Mocha Ice Cream Sandwiches with Grilled Strawberries); and Red Chili Sauce & Mangothe unmistakable flavor of mango takes hot or sweet red chili sauce far beyond mere “condiment status.” (Thai Grilled Flatbread with Mango & Sweet Chili Sauce).

 

“This season, expect to see backyard grillers experimenting with flavor layering – high-impact combinations of rubs, marinades, glazes and more – to boost flavor before, during and after grilling,” says Kevan Vetter, executive chef at McCormick. “Another exciting trend is taking cues from traditional cocktail flavors and ingredients – rediscovering them as inspiration on the grill.”

www.flavorforecast.com. Recipes and grilling tips at www.grillmates.com and www.lawrys.com.