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What to make this Fourth of July weekend

Here are some recipes we hope will inspire you to make something new this summer.

Lobster roll by Sally Pasley Vargas.Sally Pasley Vargas for the Boston Globe

If you’re looking forward to the long holiday weekend with good food, friends, and family (or maybe you’re looking forward to some quality alone time) but haven’t figured out what you’re going to eat, the Globe Food section is here to help. Here are some recipes we hope will inspire you to make something new this summer.

The perfect lobster roll

Globe recipe contributor Sally Pasley Vargas writes: “If you love lobster rolls but can’t bear to fork out exorbitant money at a restaurant, make them yourself. They’re still expensive, but generally half the price of what you’d be paying elsewhere. Since it’s summer and the living is supposed to be easy, let someone else cook the lobsters and buy the meat already out of the shells (you can save money by cooking the crustaceans yourself, or order cooked lobsters and remove the meat in your own kitchen). Keep this in mind: Lobster is the star of the show and you shouldn’t mess with perfection.”

Find her recipe for the perfect lobster roll here.


Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork.Karoline Boehm Goodnick

Pulled pork sandwiches

Globe correspondent Lisa Zwirn writes: “Cooking pork shoulder in a slow cooker rewards you with no-fuss, flavorful, meltingly tender meat, perfect for making sandwiches, tacos, or enchiladas, a dish easy enough for a teenager to make. If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can bake the pork, prepared the same way, in a covered casserole in a 325-degree oven for about three hours (it’s done when you lift it in the pot with a fork and it’s fall-apart tender). Or use a stovetop or electric pressure cooker, timing it according to the manufacturer’s instructions. The slow cooker takes about seven hours on low and you can make it one day, refrigerate it overnight, skim off the fat, and reheat it the next day.”

Find the recipe here.


Here's how to make a perfectly grilled steak using science.Connie Miller/of CB Creatives

How to make a perfectly grilled steak

Globe correspondent Valerie Ryan writes: “It’s an age-old challenge. How to grill a steak that is both tender and juicy on the inside and has a seared, flavorful, well-browned exterior? We know just the person to ask: Meathead Goldwyn, the founder, editor, and ‘barbecue whisperer’ of the popular website AmazingRibs.com. His book, ‘Meathead: The Science of Great Barbecue and Grilling,’ written with physicist and AmazingRibs.com science adviser Greg Blonder, was released [in 2016].”

The ideal steak, Goldwyn believes, can be achieved through understanding the science of cooking meat. Learn how here.

Fish chowder at the home of Sheryl Julian.Charlie Mahoney

Fish chowder

Lucky us! Sheryl Julian has shared her recipe for fish chowder. “In restaurants, fish chowder is either superb or dreadful, mostly because some cooks have such a heavy hand with the flour and other thickeners, and the broth tastes pasty. At home, however, where you’re making a manageable-sized pot, the broth should have just the right body and creaminess. Here you get a little smokiness from bacon.”

Find the recipe here.

Grilled Chicken Breasts with Mint Salsa Verde.Karoline Boehm Goodnick

Grilled chicken breasts

This recipes comes from Globe correspondent Karoline Boehm Goodnick: “Salsa verde here does not refer to the Mexican condiment made with tomatillos, chiles, and cilantro, but instead to the herby olive oil sauce traditionally used to garnish the famous Italian Florentine steak dish. This bright sauce elevates and balances anything cooked over an open flame. Pulse garlic, capers, and anchovies with handfuls of fresh mint and parsley in a food processor. Unlike pesto, this sauce does not emulsify; keep it loose — and deliciously piquant — with a dash of caper brine, if necessary. Let the chicken breasts rest at room temperature for 30 minutes before grilling so the thickest part cooks through before the skin burns. This is especially important when dealing with the large breasts we find in today’s supermarkets.”


Find the recipe here.

Grilled Vegetable Platter.Sheryl Julian for The Boston Globe

Grilled vegetable platter

This beauty comes from Sheryl Julian: “Vegetable platters should look like flower gardens — and this time of year, you only need to venture around your neighborhood to get a lesson in how to arrange food. While you’re out walking, notice how flower gardens are organized, so all the tulips, for instance, aren’t clustered together, but spread around. After you grill an array of colorful vegetables, set them in twos and threes on a large platter as if you were planting a flower bed. This one includes roasted bell peppers, small zucchini that are cut lengthwise, red onion wedges, cherry tomatoes threaded on short skewers, slices of plain goat cheese, olives, and grilled bread. Scatter with fresh oregano, marjoram, or parsley. It almost doesn’t matter how you arrange everything, it’s going to look colorful and beautiful.”

Find the recipe here.

Grilled Portobello Cheeseburgers.Sally Pasley Vargas for The Boston Globe

Portobello burgers

Another from Sally Pasley Vargas: “Often described as the “meaty mushroom,” big 4-inch portobello caps are natural candidates for a vegetarian alternative to grilled meat burgers. They have a rich, pronounced mushroom flavor and are drier than their smaller counterparts. Their stems are tough and woody, but the dark brown gills are fully edible, and unless you are stuffing them, leave them intact. While the grill is hot, cook some thick slices of sweet onion, too, and when the mushrooms are almost done, top them with cheddar and let the cheese heat just until it melts. Because grill temperatures vary, you may have to adjust the cooking time here, but it’s hard to go wrong. Serve the mushrooms on a soft bun with lettuce, tomatoes, and spicy horseradish mayo. You won’t miss the meat.


Find the recipe here.

Coleslaw is the perfect summer side.Shutterstock

Classic coleslaw

It’s the perfect summer side, easy and delicious, from Sally Pasley Vargas. Find the recipe here.

Cornbread at the home of Sheryl Julian.Food styling/Sheryl Julian and Valerie Ryan


“Every cook needs a dependable cornbread recipe,” writes Sheryl Julian. “Even if you don’t bake a lot, you can still stir this easy batter together. There are some good commercial mixes on the market, but by the time you get out a bowl and add liquids to them you might as well make your own (and of course a homemade cornbread is fresher and better). This one-bowl mixture begins with eggs, buttermilk, and vegetable or canola oil, which you mix well, then add yellow cornmeal, stoneground if you can find it, a little flour, and some leavening. You don’t need to do a mise en place here (arrange everything already measured) — though you always need one for baked goods — because you can just drop everything into the bowl as you measure it.”

Find the recipe here.


Buttermilk biscuits.Sheryl Julian

Buttermilk biscuits

From Sheryl Julian again: “Pastry chef Stella Parks spent several years writing for seriouseats.com, where she gained a huge following. Her book, ‘BraveTart: Iconic American Desserts,’ won a James Beard award (2018). It’s become the go-to volume for home bakers. Her exceptionally flaky buttermilk biscuits, baked in a cast-iron skillet, are unparalleled. To blend the cubes of butter into the flour, you smash the butter with your fingers until it forms little sheets, then add enough buttermilk to form a sticky ball. The dough is not rolled, but rather patted out, folded three times, and stamped into rounds. Pack them very tightly in the pan and bake them in the lower third of the oven, so the bottoms turn golden and firm, and the biscuits, which rise and touch each other, have tender sides,” Julian writes.

Find the recipe here.

Sheryl Julian's recipe for Strawberry shortcake. Sheryl Julian

Strawberry shortcake

Another from Sheryl Julian: “Made like biscuits, in a bowl with a pastry blender or two blunt knives, this delicate cake is baked in an 8-inch round pan, then sliced horizontally. Let the berries macerate in sugar and orange rind to bring out their juices before setting them on whipped cream between the layers.”

Find the recipe here.

jean kressy's fresh cherry pie   slug: xxkressyrec   photo credit: Karoline Boehm goodnickKaroline Boehm goodnick

Lattice cherry pie

From contributor Jean Kressy: “When making the lattice crust, instead of weaving the strips, arrange one set, then set the second set on top to form the lattice pattern. It’s much easier and you’ll get the right look. A bit of height at the pastry rim prevents juices from spilling over.”

Find the recipe here.

Summer Fruit Clafoutis.Sheryl Julian

French clafoutis

Sure, it’s not all American, but it’s still wonderful. And French clafoutis, filled with summer fruits, couldn’t be simpler to make, says Sheryl Julian.

Find her recipe here.

Chris Morris can be reached at christine.morris@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @morrisglobe.