Labor Day Recipes with a Bit o’ Sass

September 1, 2012

Each year, I wait for the first morning I have a sense that Fall is right around the corner, teasing me.  The humidity is gone, skies are clear and blue, and there’s a gentle breeze. One cruel morning this week hinted of just that, but it was gone before I knew it.  A long Labor Day weekend lies ahead, and hot sunny days perfect for a day at the beach or barbeque are what most long for.  But this last gasp of summer brings memories of school for me.  A rest from all the shopping for clothes and supplies, from setting up yet another classroom, attending meetings to prepare for the new year, and seemingly endless lesson plans that waited to be written.  I always looked forward to Labor Day weekend because I could leave all the business of the weeks preceding for a day or two to think about food, family, and relaxation.

Labor Day weekend also represents something else, though.  It often coincides with my birthday, and this year  the holiday falls on the same day of the week I was born — Monday.  Pretty appropriate, don’t you think?  I’m sure my mother did because I was her first born.  I’m thinking about making myself a cheesecake like my mother always did, but in the meantime, thinking about great food to share for the holiday weekend in general is more in order.  So I’ve decided to organize the recipes I’d love to sample here instead of tagging cookbooks and magazines, or making a list in my notebook like I normally do.  It’s a list of Labor Day Recipes with a Bit o’ Sass — because that’s what I’m usually in the mood for.

Enjoy and by all means, share what you think would be a great addition to this list by adding a link in the comments.  Party on!

Oh, and you might think the recipes I’ve included from my own archives in this list are a bit on the shi-shi side of things, but they really aren’t all that.

Okay, so I’m from California.

Does it count that I’m a transplanted “Zonie” and childhood Navy Brat?

Read on, dear friend.  Read on, because I’ve included other great recipes from foodies whom I greatly admire — and I do think they’re all that.

Labor Day Recipes with a Bit 0′ Sass


Blackberry Smash — The Parsley Thief

I just happen to have some blackberries…

Blood Orange Sangria – More Than Burnt Toast

Okay, so blood oranges aren’t in season –  improvise!

Raspberry Lime Fizz – Sass & Veracity

A shot of spirits would be nice in this.

Starters & Appetizers

Fresh Roasted Pepper and Olive Bruschetta — Sass & Veracity

Favorite.  Enough said.

Bacon Balsamic Deviled Eggs – Recipe Girl

Holy Cow.  I need to try these!


Grilled Corn Salad with Black Beans, Tomatoes and Bell Pepper — Andrea Meyers Recipes

Has a bunch of our favorite flavors all in one bowl.

Pink Slaw — Sass & Veracity

Who knew?

Spicy Broccoli-Jicama Salad with Red Bell Pepper and Black Sesame Seeds — Kalyn’s Kitchen

I have a thing for black sesame seeds.

Pasta with Chunky Fresh Tomato Sauce & Basil Oil – Sass & Veracity

If I was on a desert island, I could forget about the pasta and just get a spoon for the chunky tomato salsa.

No-Cook Summer Antipasto — The Perfect Pantry

The list of ingredients in this is swoonworthy.


Cilantro and Lime Fish Tacos — Closet Cooking

I’m from San Diego, so it’s a no brainer.

Grilled Pancetta Wrapped Salmon Skewers — Sass & Veracity

So good you won’t believe it.

Salmon Baked in a Foil Parcel with Green Beans and Pesto — Eats Well With Others

Well this is on my list, definitely.  I like things in packages.


Grilled Flat Iron Stead with Chimichurri Sauce — Kalyn’s Kitchen

Love flat iron steak and chimichurri.  I could slather it on quite a few things.

Big Bob Gibson’s Barbeque Ribs — Use Real Butter

Whoa.  There’s a lesson here.

Fall off the Bone Baby Back Ribs — Leite’s Culinaria

I shy away from pork ribs because I fail every time.  But these could turn me around.

Spice Rubbed Flank Steak — Pinch My Salt

Love me some spice rubbed anything.  Whenever.


Barbequed Chicken on the Grill — Simply Recipes

I need lessons, so this is an excellent place to begin.

Chicken Stuffed Poblano Chilies with Mushrooms and Tomatoes — Sass & Veracity

Packed with flavor and easy, so easy on the calories.

Pulled BBQ Chicken Panini – Panini Happy

I’d need a bib and a few napkins for this and smile the whole time I was eating it.


Baked Beans from Scratch — A Little Bit of Spain in Iowa

I need to put these savory sweet morsels on my list.

Cannellini Beans and Roasted Garlic — Sass & Veracity

Keep a batch for dipping everything or just get a spoon.

Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Black Beans and Chili Dressing — Sassy Radish

Well this is a meal if you ask me.  No sides needed.  Oh, the flavors!


Fresh Peach Crostada — Fresh New England

Oh. My.  I missed out on baking this summer but…

One Bowl Banana Layer Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting — Wives with Knives

This could be my birthday cake.

Farmhouse Tres Leches — I Married an Irish Farmer

I have a weak spot for cake like this.

Fruity Ice Cream Smoothie Pie — Sass & Veracity

Makes me smile.

Have a safe and wonderful weekend!

{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

bellini September 1, 2012

Thanks for the shout out and so many recipes ideas for the weekend. You share a birthday with my sister and the whole nation is celebrating. How special is that.


Kalyn September 1, 2012

What a great collection of recipes, and thanks for including me! Hope you have a great birthday with good food and lots of good company!


kellypea September 2, 2012

Kalyn — I love chimichurri so know it’s a great recipe. Thanks much for the birthday wishes!


Liz @ Virtually Homemade September 1, 2012

I am loving this weekend in San Diego. The weather is warm and slightly humid like my hometown of NYC. The beach is calling! What wonderful recipes – I hope to share with friends and family.


kellypea September 2, 2012

I agree Liz — although I got a bit too much sun today at the sand castle event downtown. One of these days, I’ll remember sun screen : /


Sharon D. September 1, 2012

Have a very happy birthday Kelly! Thank you for sharing al these great and tasty recipes.


kellypea September 2, 2012

Sharon — thanks so much! I had fun with my choosing and now have some great ideas to try myself since we spent most of the weekend eating out. :)


GiGi Eats Celebrities September 1, 2012

I think I want to make the Pancetta wrapped Salmon, except exchange the Pancetta with salmon skin! :P


Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) September 2, 2012

Thanks for including me in this great list of recipes. Have a wonderful birthday!


kellypea September 2, 2012

Thanks, Lydia and that salad is right up my alley. I’ll probably be giving it a spin in the next week or so. Can’t wait to dig in.


Karen@Mignardise September 2, 2012

Thanks for all the delicious suggestions and reminders of recipes I want to try while there’s still summer produce at the market. Have a happy birthday!


kellypea September 2, 2012

Thanks much, Karen!


Cathy at Wives with Knives September 2, 2012

Hi Kelly – I hope you have a very happy birthday. What fun that it falls on a holiday. We have a crispness in t he early morning air that signals the coming of fall. I love this time of year. Thank you for including my banana cake recipe in your delicious list. It would make a luscious birthday cake. Have a great day!


kellypea September 2, 2012

Cathy — your cake is fabulous! I am going with lemon, but will let you know when I do the banana. Sounds so heavenly! And thank you so much for the birthday wishes!


Joanne September 2, 2012

I am for REAL disappointed that fall hasn’t made it’s way here weather-wise yet…what is it waiting for??!?!?? I AM however quite pleased that summer produce is still here. WIN for making these!


kellypea September 2, 2012

This morning, Fall teased us again, but it’s still too warm for me so yuck. And I say definitely YES to the produce and am very happy it isn’t all about summer here. Thank goodness for our long growing season.


Andrea Meyers September 3, 2012

I just love Labor Day and celebrating the last weekend of summer. It’s always fun and full of good food. You chose some excellent recipes for a cookout, thanks for including mine! And happy happy birthday, hope you have a great day.


kellypea September 5, 2012

Thanks, Andrea — it was more like a birthday weekend. Lots of fun more out and about than in which is unusual for me. Looking forward to seeing you soon!


Esi September 5, 2012

Since summer isn’t technically over, I am going to keep this list handy for the next few weeks! Excellent roundup.


kellypea September 7, 2012

You’re right, Esi. Not until the solstice — and it won’t be cool until late October here, but you know that :)


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