Independence Day Grilling With Sandra Lee

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Hot Italian Sausage and Peppers with Balsamic Pepper and Olive Sauce

(servings 4 - prep time 20 minutes - grilling time 18-20 minutes)

You will need


1 large bowl

1 small bowl

1 serving platter

For balsamic pepper and olive sauce

1⁄4 cup ketchup

2 tablespoons balsamic vinaigrette, Newman's Own®

2 tablespoons pepper and onion relish, Dickinson’s®

1 tablespoon olive bruschetta topping,* Delallo®

For sausage and peppers

1 sweet onion, thinly sliced

3 bell peppers (2 red and 1 green), seeded and cut into strips

3 tablespoons balsamic vinaigrette, Newman’s Own®

4 hot Italian sausages, Johnsonville

1. Set up grill for direct cooking over medium heat. Oil grate when ready to start cooking.

2. In a small bowl, stir to combine ketchup, the 2 tablespoons balsamic vinaigrette, the relish, and olive bruschetta topping; set aside.

3. In a large bowl, toss to combine sliced onion and peppers with the 3 tablespoons balsamic vinaigrette. Place vegetables on hot, oiled grill.

** Cook about 10 minutes or until just tender (not mushy), turning often.

4. Meanwhile, place sausages on other side of hot, oiled grill and cook 18 to 20 minutes or until done (160 degrees F), turning often.

5. To serve, place hot sausages on serving platter. Top with grilled onions and peppers. Top with Balsamic Pepper and Olive Sauce.

*Note: If olive bruschetta topping is not available, substitute purchased olive tapenade or chopped black olives.

**Tip: If you own a grill wok, use it to cook the vegetables on the grill. If you must put them directly on the grill, be careful not to let the vegetables fall between the grate when grilling.

Indoor method:

In a medium saucepan, simmer sausages in water about 20 minutes; drain and transfer to slow cooker. Cover with sliced onion and peppers (omit 3 tablespoons of balsamic vinaigrette). Pour Balsamic Pepper and Olive Sauce over top. Cover and cook on low-heat setting for 6 to 8 hours or on high-heat setting for 2 to 4 hours. Serve as directed.

Jose Cuervo Golden Margarita Over Ice

(Makes 6 servings)

750 ml ounces of Jose Cuervo Golden Margarita®

Ice cubes

1. Pour ice cubes and 4 ounces of Jose Cuervo Golden Margarita in a highball glass garnished with an orange slice.

Red Pepper Pasta Salad with Hot Italian sausage

(Makes 4 to 6 servings)

2 red bell peppers

1⁄2 cup Greek vinaigrette dressing and marinade, Kraft®

3 cups corkscrew pasta, cooked according to package directions

4 Hot Italian sausages, Johnsonville®

Garnish: fresh parsley

1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat (350° to 400°). Spray grill rack with nonstick nonflammable cooking spray.

2. Cut tops and bottoms off peppers; slice each pepper in half lengthwise, and remove seeds and membrane. Using hands, press down slightly to flatten peppers.

3. Grill peppers for 10 minutes, or until tender, turning once. Chop peppers.

4. In a large bowl, combine peppers, pasta, and vinaigrette. Chill for at least 30 minutes.

5. Place sausage on hot, oiled grill.Cook for 18 to 20 minutes or until sausages are done (160 degrees F).

6. Combine all ingredients and garnish with fresh parsley, if desired.

Grilled Buttery Herb Corn

(Makes 4 servings)

1⁄4 cup butter, softened

1 tablespoon basil and garlic seasoning blend, McCormick®

4 ears corn

1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat (350° to 400°). Spray grill rack with nonstick nonflammable cooking spray.

2. In a small bowl, combine butter and seasoning blend. Rub butter mixture evenly over corn. Wrap each ear in foil. Grill corn, covered w/ grill lid, for 30 mins, turning once. Allow corn to cool slightly before removing foil.

Star-Spangled (Birthday) Cake

(Makes one 9" cake)

2 (16-ounce) boxes pound cake mix, Betty Crocker®

11⁄2 cups white grape juice

1⁄2 cup whole milk

4 large eggs

Blueberry Filling

3 (12-ounce) cans fluffy white whipped frosting, Betty Crocker®

2 cups confectioners’ sugar, Domino®

Garnish: fondant stars, sparklers

1. Preheat oven to 350˚. Spray 3 (9-inch) round cake pans with nonstick baking spray with flour.

2. In a large bowl, combine cake mixes, juice, milk, and eggs. Beat at low speed with an electric mixer until combined. Increase mixer speed to medium-high, and continue beating for 2 minutes, or until almost smooth. Pour into prepared pans, and bake for 16 to 20 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool in pans for 10 minutes. Remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks. Spread Blueberry Filling evenly in between cake layers.

3. In a large bowl, combine frosting and confectioners’ sugar. Beat at low speed with an electric mixer until combined. Increase mixer speed to medium-high, and beat for 1 minute, or until smooth. Spread frosting evenly over top and sides of cake. Garnish cake with fondant stars and sparklers, if desired.

Blueberry Icing

(Makes about 11/4 cups)

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened

1⁄4 cup blueberry preserves

Sky-blue food coloring

1.In a small bowl, combine cream cheese and blueberry preserves. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until well combined. Add food coloring until desired color is reached.


1. On a Silpat baking liner or parchment paper, roll ready-to-use white fondant to 1/8-inch thickness. Fondant available at crafts stores nationwide or

2. Using a 2-inch star-shaped cutter, cut out desired number of fondant stars.

3. Press white thin-gauge floral wire through the center of the fondant stars.

4. Spray fondant stars with pearl-colored edible lustre spray. Spray available at