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June 26, 2017

Get Grillin' for Canada Day! #PerfectPairings #SummerFresh

We're days away from the first summer long weekend in Canada, and it's a pretty big one. It's Canada's 150th Birthday and unless you're living under the Canadian Shield, you're very much aware. I'm super pumped -- we are definitely proud Canadians and rest assure, we'll will be sporting our fave red on July 1.

One of my favourite things to do on a summer long weekend is to have a BBQ. My family happens to use the BBQ year-round, but somehow everything just tastes better in the summer. Even better outside. Especially with friends.

If you're hosting or attending a BBQ this Canada Day long weekend, I'm going to give you some quick and easy meal ideas with perfect pairing options. I've teamed up with Canadian company, Summer Fresh, to give you some super simple grilling options this Canada Day.

Appetizer: Lemon Dill Hummus Flatbread smothered in Mozzarella, Pistou Basil & Vine Tomatoes

Ooooh, fancy huh? Everyone likes pizza. Call it "Flatbread" and you're rockin'. Top it with a yummy, savoury hummus and you'll have people talking.

This app takes minutes to make, and it's all in the preparation.

After rolling our your dough (as thin as possible), and you've oiled your grill, place the dough directly on your BBQ.

After a couple of minutes, flip, so both sides get pronounced grill marks.

Smother the top of the flatbread with Summer Fresh Lemon Dill Hummus, which is fresh and light with a definite zing. Don't be chintzy either -- coat that baby up.

Then, top with your cheese, vine tomatoes, fresh basil and sprinkle with Parmeggiano Reggiano.

Close the lid to your BBQ and cook on medium heat for a few minutes until the cheese has melted. Cut and serve. This pizza flatbread is perfect right off the grill, and makes excellent leftovers, too.

Entree: Homemade Beef Hamburger topped with Canadian Cheddar and Roasted Red Pepper Dip. 

The King of the BBQ is the Burger, hands down. And there's nothing quite like a homemade beef burger. I make my burgers in advance and freeze them for easy meals, and while I use a typical meatball recipe, this time, I added onion and parsley to my meat mix for extra flavour. 

If you don't have time to make your own burgers, don't sweat it. A frozen burger or store-bought will do just fine. Make sure you have a great bun and excellent toppings.

If you're hosting, this is a great time to have a selection of Summer Fresh products out and have your guests play with flavour. Who wouldn't appreciate a personalized Burger Bar!?

For my custom burger, I smothered my bun in Summer Fresh Roasted Red Pepper Dip and topped my patty with classic Canadian Cheddar cheese. For good measure, a squirt of ketchup and mustard, but that's all. This nearly naked burger was juicy and delicious all on its own.

Salad: Grilled Watermelon Salad topped with Green Goddess Dip

Have you ever grilled a watermelon?! It's kind of cool, actually, and definitely unexpected.

Cut your watermelon into chunks and brush lightly with olive oil before placing it on the grill. BBQ the melon for a couple of minutes on each side until you have grill marks.

For a super simple salad, arrange your watermelon and drizzle with Summer Fresh Green Goddess Dip. If you've never tried Green Goddess Dip -- let me explain its versatility -- it's creamy and herby and loaded with flavour. We're talking basil AND parsley, which gives you a classic Italian taste, but with a twist. This Green Goddess Dip would be excellent in a pasta salad, as a crudite dip, with flatbreads and crackers.

And it's really good on watermelon.

Sprinkle some sea salt for an added kick and enjoy. If you want to jazz it up even more, sprinkle some feta cheese, place the watermelon on a bed of arugula, and maybe even drizzle some balsamic vinegar on top. Or, eat it straight up. It's Canada Day. Enjoy your company!

Summer BBQs are NOT supposed to be fancy or pretentious -- so you don't have to make them that way. Stick to the basics, give your meal a little twist with Summer Fresh, and have fun creating your Perfect Pairings.

Want some more inspiration? Visit Summer Fresh's Perfect Pairing Guide for all your Canada Day meal planning. Happy Canada150!

Disclosure: I received compensation in order to write this blog post. As always, the opinions expressed on my blog are my own.

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