Five years ago we moved into this apartment complex and right from the start Mike wanted to head outside and grill using one of the complex grills. I don't know why I fought him on this but fought him I did, I thought - "ew everyone uses those grills, how will we know they're clean?" or I whined, "ugh then we have to bring the food in and out, in and out, sounds like too much work" and we had this discussion over and over again over the years until Memorial Day 2010 when our awesome neighbors planned an impromptu barbecue and I saw Mike's eyes light up at the thought of *gasp* grilling! So I caved, Mike marinated chicken, grabbed his case of grilling tools and we headed out side for an afternoon around the grill and the craziest thing happened - I had a blast! Now maybe it was because our friends/neighbors are just that awesome (which they totally are) or that all the food was so delicious (which it absolutely was) or it could be the obvious fun Mike was having while manning the grill, I didn't hear him complain that he was hot, even though sweat was pouring down the poor guy's face. He just loaded plates with perfectly grilled food and we all ate and enjoyed the afternoon. So since that afternoon I deemed the grills perfectly acceptable to use!
The use of the grills opened a whole new world of recipes for me, ones that I had overlooked or pushed to the bottom of the stack until that day we had access to a worhty grill and now that day was finally here so one day I headed to the store early and got the fixins' for some grilled chicken for dinner Grilled Buttermilk Chicken to be exact - I found the recipe on RealSimple.com and you can find it here. And since we were going to be grilling new and exciting dishes I had to find new and exciting sides so I caved and made Giada's Italian Caesar Salad with Polenta Croutons - I had the recipe in one of her cookbooks but you can find it here. Now I will warn you that salad is a lot of work - not the dressing part that's a dream but the polenta croutons was an all day affair and I realized quickly why Mike does all the frying in this house! But it turned out delicious and the extra effort was worth it!!
Right after this grilled chicken dinner we turned around had a Friday night grill night with our friend Leslie - another fantastic evening with friends and another load of deliciously grilled food and I've gotta tell you when the weekend rolls around now and Mike looks at me and says "well we can throw stuff on the grill" I no longer cringe, wince, sigh or moan but instead smile and say "sure why not!"
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