You have reached your limit of free articles this month.

Enjoy unlimited access to myAJC.com

Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks.

GREAT REASONS TO SUBSCRIBE TODAY!

  • IN-DEPTH REPORTING
  • INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING
  • NEW TOPICS & COVERAGE
  • ePAPER
X

You have read of premium articles.

Get unlimited access to all of our breaking news, in-depth coverage and bonus content- exclusively for subscribers. Starting at just 99¢ for 8 weeks

X

Welcome to myAJC.com

This subscriber-only site gives you exclusive access to breaking news, in-depth coverage, exclusive interactives and bonus content.

You can read free articles of your choice a month that are only available on myAJC.com.

5 things to bring to a Memorial Day BBQ (besides beer)


What do you bring to a Memorial Day barbecue besides beer?

On this holiday created to honor fallen veterans, we should pause and thank those who fight for freedom. And then cook some meat outdoors.

But if you’re not throwing the party, you are probably not cooking the meat. (If you ARE throwing the party, don’t forget to include ribs, or you may end up like Sad Grandpa.)

It’s helpful to know if you’re going to a barbecue or a cookout. Michael Harriot offered some NSFW tips on the differences.

In either case, here are a few things to know about Memorial Day etiquette:

Mac and Cheese

It goes without saying that you’re going to bring a side-dish, or you won’t get invited back, so we’re not going to focus on those. But here are a few tips: Try not to bring the same dish everyone else is bringing. Competition will heaviest in the macaroni and cheese field.

There are two ways to make your mac and cheese stand out.

One: Bacon. This recipe from our intrepid food writers suggests bacon or pancetta, plus other gourmet options like mascarpone.

Two: Heat. If your picnic locale has electricity, you can plug in a crock-pot and keep that mac and cheese bubbling. Make sure to use a slow-cooker recipe.

RELATED: Memorial Day 2017 sales in Atlanta

MORE:

Punch

You can bring beer, but how much more inventive is a pitcher of rum punch? The punch can be made more or less potent, depending on the audience, and this recipe (as suggested by Primer Magazine), hews to the critical elements of a successful tropical drink, “1 part sour, 2 parts sweet; 3 parts strong and 4 parts weak.”

Alternatively, our drinking expert, Bob Townsend suggests a whiskey punch with rum, oleo-saccharum and other exotic ingredients.

Music

Scientific research suggests that a mixtape spiked with Frankie Beverly and Maze will make hamburgers taste better.

Since the concept of “the mixtape” now means streaming tunes on your smartphone, you can volunteer your Spotify subscription, in case the host runs out of ideas. It’s also not a bad idea to keep a battery-powered bluetooth speaker in the trunk, in case the host completely spaces out and forgets the music all together.

At a recent cookout we rocked it old school, using an iPod loaded with 2,000 tunes and a 1/8 inch connector to a Sony jambox. No bluetooth required.

Guitar

Remember that music can cause conflict, when a connoisseur wants to switch from Frankie Beverly to Frank Sinatra. Self-generated music (i.e. when you bring out your acoustic guitar and start strumming “Michael Row Your Boat Ashore”) can also be welcomed or abhorred.

But if you can play, and you can sing, and you can remember the lyrics to songs by John Prine, Hank Williams, Willie Nelson and other proven campfire-friendly artists, then you could contribute something valuable to the event. (Check with your host.)

Your own cooler

With ice in it. So you can keep your punch and other backup items cold. Such as a lemon icebox cake

Or a packet of garden burgers, in case a vegetarian shows up. Or your own beer. Just in case.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Living

Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg calls for online voting, universal basic income

In his commencement address to Harvard, his sort-of alma mater, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg pitched ideas including online voting and universal basic income and urged the class of 2017 to tackle a number of societal challenges, including climate change and disease. MORE: Oprah Winfrey’s commencement address at Agnes Scott College &ldquo...
WATCH: Massive crash at Indy 500 sends car airborne, landing in fiery explosion on track 
WATCH: Massive crash at Indy 500 sends car airborne, landing in fiery explosion on track 

  A major crash at the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday sent a race car airborne, careening out of control, before landing in pieces on the track.  The drivers of the two cars involved, Jay Howard and Scott Dixon, were fine, but the violent smash-up caused moments of panic in the pits and in the stands.  Horrified crew members and spectators...
Gal Gadot, Lynda Carter meet at ‘Wonder Woman’ premiere
Gal Gadot, Lynda Carter meet at ‘Wonder Woman’ premiere

Two are more wonderful than one. Gal Gadot and Lynda Carter met, embraced and posed for photographs at Thursday’s premiere of “Wonder Woman” in Hollywood, ETOnline reported. >> Read more trending news Carter, 65, made the Wonder Woman character famous during its television series run from 1975 to 1979. Gadot is starring...
U2 makes post-concert stop at Whataburger in Houston 
U2 makes post-concert stop at Whataburger in Houston 

After another grueling concert on the road, U2 can be forgiven for acting in mysterious ways. The Irish rock ’n’ roll band finished their show in Houston on Wednesday night and decided to eat at a local Whataburger, KDFW reported. >> Read more trending news After arriving, members of the band posed for photographs with some...
Here we go again: TMZ says Joseline assaults Stevie J at restaurant with hot mushrooms
Here we go again: TMZ says Joseline assaults Stevie J at restaurant with hot mushrooms

Joseline and Stevie J attempted reconciliation earlier this year. That didn’t last long. CREDIT: Getty Images This was posted on Saturday, May 27, 2017 by Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.
More Stories