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Heidi Kaisand
0:01
Good morning and welcome to create with Heidi. I'm Heidi Kaisand, owner of Hen and Chicks studio in Conrad, Iowa, and lover of all things creative. Each week here on create with Heidi, we like to cover topics that educate and inspire you about how people are being creative, whether it's quilting, scrapbooking, food, wool, or just hanging out with others who seem to have their creative Mojo groove and in all the right directions, we are excited to share these things with you. Each week, I love to find a quote or a statement or something that is appropriate with our guest today. And here's today so start your mouth watering, cooking and eating food outdoors makes it taste infinitely better than the same meal prepared and consumed indoors. And I think that is so appropriate, as we are going to be talking about barbecuing and getting ready for the holiday weekend. So today, my guest is Anne McMillan. Good morning.
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Anne McMillan
1:04
And good morning, Heidi. I'm glad to be here.
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Heidi Kaisand
1:08
I'm so glad you're here too. And how did it get to be that the Fourth of July? I mean, like when I think of the Fourth of July, it's like, okay, but here's like half over. And it's like, oh my gosh, here comes the Fourth of July. And it's on the weekend, this year. So it just means that we are going to be able to be outside and barbecue and eat and do all sorts of things. So it to me it's exciting.
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Anne McMillan
1:37
Absolutely. And no, the Fourth of July always marks that rite of passage of summer and it means gatherings and food and fun.
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Heidi Kaisand
1:46
Oh, it does and what what kinds of things, what kinds of events or you know, how do you approach a holiday weekend like this when it comes to food? And because we should tell everybody I know you've been a guest before and people might remember your name. But you are first of all, first and foremost, you are my cousin like my big sister. And so you are related, but you are a Pampered Chef consultant. And food is your business. And so you this is you love to think about food and menus and all that kind of stuff.
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Anne McMillan
2:21
Absolutely. It's really my passion that I found enriching family mealtime, the memories you make through food, if you ask friends and family what they remember about the Fourth of July, oftentimes, things like the picnic and maybe that patriotic fruit pizza that somebody brought. You know, that's what you remember, oftentimes. And so when I'm planning for summer food, I think about the where, you know, are we on our porch? Are we at the park? Are we taking it to a parade and the snacks? And then I think about the what, you know, what can a lot of people enjoy? And then I think the how, how am I going to transport it, serve it cook it? That's really kind of my food strategy,
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Heidi Kaisand
3:12
right? Because either I mean, those three categories there that you just mentioned, oh my gosh, it's it. Because it's so different if you are going to a patio. And and that's you know, if your food preparation takes a little bit more, and all you have to do is go from the kitchen to the backyard. That's one thing. But if you're taking it to the park down the street or down the road, or several hours down the road, then you have to have a different strategy.
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Anne McMillan
3:37
Correct? Absolutely. And so that's what I think is important when you're thinking about which foods you want to make. Where is it going. And I'll just give give an example here. One thing that's a really fun summer recipe that people like to do is it's called a red, white and blue trifle Heidi. And it's very simple. It can do with a justice cake brownies or pound cake, and then it's got red and blueberries. And that is something that you can make even the day ahead. And it transports and serves fantastically well then. So the opposite example, for you would be if it's something that you need to assemble at the last minute, and then you think you're going to travel with it somewhere. That's a food that should be for your patio.
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Heidi Kaisand
4:24
Yes, absolutely. So go back to the trifle a second because you're you're wetting my appetite here. It's you said, so tell me what a trifle might look like. Do you? It's like, I know what I think I know what a trifle is. But I'm wondering if our audience has done a trifle before. So you might start with a bowl. That is clear, correct?
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Anne McMillan
4:46
Correct. Yep. And for the listeners that have heard you and I talked before there is a I believe we have a red white and blue trifle in our Second Harvest we share available at hamitic Studios On our website, but often you start with a clear glass bowl because it's a very attractive dessert. And then you need to decide what kind of base you want yours to be. So that's where it comes in that you could do it just with cake that you would cube up, or a pound cake, or brownie. And then you need your berry mixture, which I use blueberries, blackberries, raspberries and strawberries. Some people pick just the ones they want. And then it is a cool whip pudding mixture. And I prefer the one that is white chocolate pudding. I just think it adds just a tip shows flavoring I add a little almond extract and either real whipping cream or cool whip. And basically you carefully kind of stack the base, which would be in this instance, probably angel food cake and my berries. And you would gently layer the cream mixture on the top of the layers.
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Heidi Kaisand
6:03
Oh my gosh, my mouth is watering. And in my mind, I'm thinking is it possible that I could use a layer of angel food cake and then some fruit and then in a layer of brownies? I think you know it could be it could be really scrumptious in many different ways. But I do always like how a trifle looks. And I think we we overthink sometimes that when you see that, that it might be more difficult. But it really is as simple as you just described. And I love that idea. So you know, and we're off to a great start talking about some great summer food. When we come back from this commercial break, we'll keep talking. Welcome back to create with Heidi and I'm here with Anne McMillan, who is a Pampered Chef consultant, a food connoisseur. Anna and I are cousins, we've grown up with food as an important part of our lives. I'm sure both of us would be able to tell stories of both our mothers and our grandmother. Always trying new recipes, not being afraid of doing different things with food. And and we've actually collected many of those recipes in our own cookbook called Second Harvest. And that is available on our website and in Czech studio or in in the store as well. And so that is you know, it's a great place for recipes, like the trifle that we were talking about before the break. But today because it is this weekend is the fourth of July. We were talking about. I'll say that backyard cooking, you know, going in? And you had some great comments. I mean, I'm talking about the what, where, and how did I get those three questions, right?
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Anne McMillan
8:00
Yes, you did. Yep.
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Heidi Kaisand
8:02
All right. And so the trifle is something that you were saying is, is easy, really easy to prepare, easy to travel. If it jiggles a little in the car, nothing's gonna happen to it. That kind of thing. What other kinds of tips do you have for us?
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Anne McMillan
8:19
Well, one thing I'll just mention Heidi as being a Pampered Chef consultant, and over the years of food, I think fondly back to our grandmother. And think of what she would have thought about our cool linzer wine with the Pampered Chef that I'm just going to mention for a second here. And I we will put our link on our website, Heidi so that people do get this. But this is a technology that's pretty new for food serving. And basically we have four different size and designed containers that have a freezer insert. And so if you get any of these containers, there's two different containers with divisions for like relish trays routes, there's a nine by 13 size, and there's two different serving bowl sizes. So any of these, you get the freezer insert portion and you store it in your freezer, it takes less space than a frozen pizza. So then they're constantly ready for year round travel, but especially for this summer. And I think back fondly to grandma because she would put her famous potato salad out for the picnic. And she would almost Hoover over it. And the minute that line was done, she would take that and get it back in the cooler or back in somebody's refrigerator.
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Heidi Kaisand
9:33
I guess it's exactly it's exactly what grandma would have done because we would not want to have any food safety issues for anybody.
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Anne McMillan
9:43
Right, right. I mean, I just so vividly can remember her doing this. And so I just love this cool insert line that we carry in our company, because it allows you to put that potato salad in one of the serving bowls, transport it wherever you're going to the park or Whatever. And it is food safe to serve up to four hours in 80 degree temperature as long as you had frozen the freezer insert ahead of time. So that's just something that's really been a game changer because like the patriotic fruit pizza that you can do that looks like a flag, which is so fun. Now you can do it in a nine by 13 size and have a cool bass. And so for those of you that have made one before, you know, there's nothing worse than you went to the work of making a pretty fruit pizza like a flag and then cream cheese powdered sugar frosting, got a little sauce, and then the raspberries or strawberries started to believe that won't happen if you use a system like this.
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Heidi Kaisand
10:40
Absolutely. I've seen I've seen that happen. And yes, and again, yeah, easy to travel easy to work with. I love that, you know, I'll say it can be in the freezer all the time. And then be able to just pull it out and go whenever whenever you need it.
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Anne McMillan
10:58
Right? Absolutely and and think outside of the box, like I use them tailgating. I use them at school kids sporting events, you can have cut up fruit, but I actually even use them in my own refrigerator with like salad toppings prepped for the week, and in all the different dividers for the relish tray size. So it's a very easy to throw together lunches for me during the week. And I just can, you know, leave it out and somebody else pops home and they can eat out of it too and make their own salad and back in it goes. So very convenient for food safety.
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Heidi Kaisand
11:29
Oh, absolutely. And I in my mind is that as you're talking about this, we're always packing food to go at our house because when we leave in the morning, some nights it's 10 o'clock when we get home. So we're packing snacks. We're packing, you know, lunches, maybe supper because of ballgames and you know work and all that kind of stuff. I could even see it maybe being used for just conveniently taking my things to the store and and keeping stuff cold.
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Anne McMillan
11:59
Absolutely, yes, you would find way more uses and what you think.
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Heidi Kaisand
12:03
Very good. So as we keep talking about, you know what we might be eating? Do you have a What's your favorite Fourth of July menu look like?
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Anne McMillan
12:15
Oh my gosh, that is so fun to think about. So I think this is one of your favorites too. But if you have access to a grill or you're going to be grilling, and all times Southern summer favorite is a recipe called mock filets.
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Heidi Kaisand
12:28
I knew that's what you were gonna say. That's one of mine.
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Anne McMillan
12:32
Yes, and it's a ground beef mixture that has some onions and Worcestershire and mushrooms chopped up in it. And you form it kind of into a thicker Patty and wrap a piece of bacon around it and you grill them and they are totally delicious. And they can totally be made ahead and frozen, and then taken back out when you want them for the summer. So like lately, you know, people have seen how expensive beef prices have gotten. And so if you're watching the fairway ad when you can buy like a 10 pound two of ground beef much less expensive than when it's not on their sale. You could make these you could make you know a double or triple batch of this and have them frozen individually in your freezer and just take out however many you need for for that particular picnic. So maxillae is would be the star of the show, I think for Fourth of July menu. I also love the BLT pasta salad recipe that is basically got romaine lettuce, bow tie, pasta, cherry tomatoes, cooked bacon, chop celery, chopped onions, and a soft creamy dressing. So that would be there. And then you know, I would just slice up a whole watermelon and have free pizza. I mean, those would probably be all good stars.
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Heidi Kaisand
13:47
You know, the other salad that is going through my head at the moment that I'm envisioning in my mouth is watering is I don't know the name of it. We did it in the cookbook. It's got the sweet corn that you grilled. And then take off the cob. And tell me what do you remember the name of that? I
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Anne McMillan
14:08
think it's called the grilled corn avocado tomato salad.
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Heidi Kaisand
14:11
Yes, that thou not one. And I loved. loved that. Are there any tricks for grilling sweet corn that that you suggest because that it's something that I like, even as much as I cook that I'm gonna say I worry a little bit that when I go to put sweet corn on the grill that I'm going to do it wrong. Is there any trick to it or is it as simple as it sounds?
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Anne McMillan
14:38
It truly is as simple as it sounds. You have two options. Some people grill it in the husks, but I prefer to grill it to get a little bit of a grilling char on my corn. And so it's important that you lightly spritz it with like I love to spritz up just with little olive oil and then as you grill it, if you're going to use direct heat, then you do need to, you know, not walk away and leave it because you will need to rotate the cobs every couple of minutes. If you're going to use indirect heat, like on a charcoal grill that you can move or a Big Green Egg, it's a little bit more forgiving. And so you actually have time to, you know, maybe you're gonna grill brats or something on the direct heat and do your cornum indirect heat. But usually it's about a six to eight minute grilling process. And you do want to rotate the cubs.
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Heidi Kaisand
15:36
Oh, it is very tasty. I love there's that. That bit of grilled flavor to it. And of course, you who doesn't love sweet corn. And then with the avocado and stuff, it just a very good salad. Okay, well, I'm getting super hungry. But we're gonna take a quick commercial break. And I promise not to be gone too long. I won't eat a lot. And I'll be right back. And we'll keep talking. Welcome back to create with Heidi and I'll just wipe my mouth a little here from my snack during the break as this conversation with Anne is making me hungry and think about all the great food that we're going to have for the Fourth of July. Now. And before the break, and we were talking about grilled corn. You mentioned charcoal, you mentioned the Big Green Egg. So the question that's going through my mind is do you do you use? Do you use charcoal? Do you use gas? You know, do you use a little bit of both? Do you grill indoors? Do you grow outdoors? You know, I'm just thinking about all the different opportunities, a different ways that we can grill and how it could look different?
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Anne McMillan
16:48
Oh, absolutely. And you know, our house if we're outdoor grilling, we are 100% in the Big Green Egg camp, which uses lump charcoal. And we love it because you literally can set it at get the temperature to say 250 degrees. And it'll maintain that for 12 hours. I mean, it's just the great process. indoors, I use two different grilling methods. I love a stovetop grill pan. You preheat the pan from our line, and then you can put anything on it that you're wanting to grow that maybe you don't want to take the time to do outside. Love it simple clean up very quick, especially a fan of it in the winter. And then newer actually to our line is a grilling griddle appliance that I will be very honest until it came out in Pampered Chef world. I did not even know there was something like this on the market. And so you can again, it's an indoor grilling plate. But it also is convertible so that you can use it as a griddle and as a waffle maker also. And I have found that to be really fun because like I love hibachi shrimp from like a Japanese. Yes, but I love the price of making it at home. And this allows you to grill the shrimp on one side and be sorting the vegetables on another place on the same tool. So it is pretty cool. So yes, I do grill inside and outside both. But were our household would be in the Big Green Egg lump charcoal camp.
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Heidi Kaisand
18:22
I like it. Well, you know, because even even on some of the best summer days, like for example, our grill happens to be out on a porch, but if it's really windy, it's not exactly enjoyable. If you know we're where our girl happens to sit, so there's times when I'm like I pull out my grill pan because I still want that kind of grilling you know look to the food just that you know that we know how it's cooked and stuff, but it's sometimes easier to grill inside than it is outside. So you know that? Absolutely. Okay, so back to our have we covered our z what, where and how, what other tips or suggestions do you have in those three categories of things to think about?
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Anne McMillan
19:06
Well, I do think the what part you know truly be thinking about who's going to be eating it. Because if if your picnic is mostly teenagers and under the new food the teenagers and under love, you know things that are friendly to them fruit kebab, you know, they probably aren't the potato salad type person as much so I think the what really depends on your audience, you want to really be thinking about who to do that. And in the summer, there's a lot of food on a stick. You know, it makes me think all the way to the State Fair Food on a stick but oh yeah, the food, food on the stick at parties and picnics because you can do shish kebabs fruit kebabs. Just this week I actually read an article about doing salads on a stick. So you can make like it was like a wedge salad on a stick. The picture was a door trouble. So there's a lot of fun that could be happening in the what? Part Two, but really the what really is determined by your audience? Who's who's going to be the consumers of the what? Oh, absolutely.
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Heidi Kaisand
20:10
And we all I think everybody loves something on a stick. So that is that is good. And any suggestions on I'm going to jump to the how part of it any tips on preparation or how we might, you know, get organized to get those foods to our picnic or to our party, wherever we're going?
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Anne McMillan
20:33
Well, in the summer, you know, people don't want to spend hours and hours in the kitchen, who would when the weather's nice, outside, so