Red, white and blue burgers

Let's face it.  American-style grilling doesn't conjure up too many healthy food images.  But you can create a healthy grilling menu, even if you live with a bunch of carnivores, otherwise known as big, strappy American men.
Here's why: today we know it's not red meat that is an unhealthy culprit in the American diet.  Rather, it is meat that comes from corn-stuffed cows on feed-lots that create burgers heavy in saturated fat and low in omega-3 fatty acids.  Replace those burgers with meat that comes from a cow raised on pasture, and you have an entirely different, and dare I say healthy, meal.  These burgers are packed with heart friendly omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E, and conjugated linoleic acid, or CLA, which is considered a powerful cancer fighter.

So flip your burgers without guilt tonight, and add a few other fun salads and fruits.  Here's my menu, which is unfussy, yet still delicious and festive:
  1. Red, white and blue burgers: Grass-fed bison burgers filled with blue cheese.  I'll top with grilled red onions, beefsteak tomatoes, and lettuce on whole wheat buns
  2. Quinoa and snap pea salad.  I love this recipe, which I found in the Wall Street Journal.  It is so light and summery, perfect for a 4th of July picnic
  3. Red, white, and blue salad:  Green salad with onions, raspberries, blueberries, pecans, and feta cheese. Tossed with a blush vinaigrette
  4. Sliced watermelon
  5. Sweet potato fries: Slice sweet potatoes into fry shapes.  Arrange on cookie tray and spray with olive oil.  Salt and pepper.  I like to add some cayenne pepper for a bite.  Bake in the oven a 450F for about 15 minutes
  6. An assortment of drinks: Ice water, Pellegrino, Sam Adams Lager, a rustic red wine, like a Zinfandel, a fun drink mix: equal parts coconut water, pellegrino, and sparkling fruit juice like orange or grapefruit
  7. Cherry pie and cupcakes with red, white, and blue icing flags: Yes, this is a celebration and dessert is a necessary part of it.  Indulging on occassion is an important part of sticking with an overall diet strategy.  Enjoy.
What are you favorite foods to grill?

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