July 4th Recipes for Foodies

Recipes courtesy of Chef Lisa Resch of Carolina Catering Company

This meal echoes the patriotic colors of the holiday, beginning with a frisée salad featuring roasted red beets, jicama, Rogue River blue cheese, and black raspberries. On a summer evening, the menu refreshes with a chilled soup of roasted red pepper in coconut milk, with a touch of red curry for a kick, served with a dash of coriander crème fraîche and microgreens. The entrée is a pan-seared rainbow trout, which can be served hot, room temperature, or cold—depending on your mood or the weather. The crispy fish is placed atop creamy heirloom blue grits (flown in overnight, fresh from Charleston), with corn and plum relish, cilantro, and corn puree. For dessert, a citrus sponge cake with lemon curd, fresh blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries is garnished with a delicate strawberry macaron.

For ideas on designing the perfect outdoor tablescape for your patriotic party, click here.


Roasted Beet and Frisee Salad



  • Crispy frisee
  • 4-6 oz. Rogue River Blue Cheese (should be wrapped in foil and produced in Oregon, available at the Fresh Market)
  • 2 medium-sized red beets, about 3-4 inches in diameter
  • 1 pint large blackberries
  • 1 piece jicama
  • Olive oil
  • Zest of one lemon
  • White balsamic vinegar
  • Salt and pepper for seasoning

Wash the beets, season with salt and pepper, and drizzle each with one tablespoon of olive oil. Wrap them loosely in foil, place them on a sheet pan, and bake in the oven at 325 degrees for 1.5 hours. Unwrap and let cool. When you can touch them without them being too warm, pull back the skin and carefully peel it away. Refrigerate for about four hours. Peel jicama and cut into ½-inch cubes.

When ready to serve, mix frisee with the zest of one lemon, a drizzle of white balsamic vinegar, and ½ cup of olive oil. Slice the beets thinly and place on top of greens. Garnish each salad with blackberries, crumbled blue cheese, and jicama cubes. Serve with fresh ground pepper.


50fifty_tabletop_nill-2908Chilled Coconut and Roasted Red Pepper Soup


  • 3 large jars of cut roasted red peppers
  • 8 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 cup champagne
  • 3 tablespoons red curry paste
  • 1 can Coco Lopez Coconut
  • 4 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 cups plain white yogurt
  • Sour cream
  • Dried coriander
  • Cilantro or mint leaves
  • Sriracha sauce, salt, and white pepper for seasoning

Saute cut roasted red peppers with minced garlic for about 10 minutes on low heat. Deglaze pan with champagne and cook down for about five minutes. Toss with red curry paste and cook down for five more minutes.

In a blender, on high speed, puree red peppers with coconut, vegetable stock, and yogurt. Add salt and white pepper to taste. (You can also add a dash of Sriracha to spice it up.) For a pretty color, serve chilled in a white bowl with some sour cream mixed with dried coriander. Garnish with a couple leaves of cilantro or mint.


Pan-Seared Rainbow Trout with Heirloom Blue Grits


50fifty_tabletop_nill-2853Take a 6-8 oz. piece of trout and lightly dust with seasoned flour (you can add seasoning salt, garlic salt, pepper, onion powder, and/or cayenne to season it). Take a nonstick skillet and heat on medium to high. Add one tablespoon of oil. Once the oil is hot enough (after about one minute), pan-sear the trout on each side, flipping it only once to get a good golden color. Once you have flipped it over, squeeze the juice of one lemon into the pan to deglaze and flavor.

Corn Plum Salsa

Grill two ears of corn until they have a bit of charred color, then cut corn from stalks. Mix the corn with ½ teaspoon of lemon zest, four chopped mint leaves, 10 chopped cilantro leaves, two small plums cut into ¼ inch cubes, a splash of olive oil, and a tablespoon of red pepper jelly. Season to taste. (This will become the fresh, bright garnish on top of the fish.)

Corn Puree

Roast four ears of corn (or one small can) with salt and pepper in oven at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Take corn off the stalks and simmer on medium heat with two cups of heavy cream, one minced shallot, and two bulbs of minced garlic until the corn is really soft and creates color in the pan. Strain corn out and puree with two tablespoons of mascarpone. Add a touch of Annatto spice for color, and the sauce should be smooth and shiny after you are finished pureeing it.

Heirloom Blue Grits

*Anson Mills grits are specially-made from heirloom grains. Available online, the corn is grown in the mountains of the Carolinas and, when cooked slowly, taste sweet and a bit nutty. You always rinse them first and cook them slowly, like a risotto.

Take one cup of grits and cover in a saucepan with 2.5 cups of water and let sit on your counter overnight. After you have skimmed the residual chaff off the top, set saucepan on medium heat – stirring constantly until they become “starchy” – for about seven minutes. Reduce the heat and every 10 minutes, stir and see if you can get the wooden spoon you are using to stick upright. When it does, add about ½ cup of water. Do this for about four different times. Once the grits become creamy, whisk in some real butter and serve under the crispy golden trout, garnish with corn fruit salsa and drizzle with creamy yellow corn puree.


50fifty_tabletop_nill-2993Citrus Sponge Cake with Lemon Curd and Berries

Use a basic recipe for sponge cake and mix together with two tablespoons of orange juice, ½ teaspoon of lime zest, and ½ teaspoon of lemon zest. Take the batter and bake individual sponge cakes in the bottom of large muffin tins.

Mix two eggs, ½ cup of sugar, one tablespoon of lemon zest, and 1/3 cup lemon juice and whisk together in a saucepan. Place the saucepan over warm boiling water and whisk in four tablespoons of butter, one tablespoon at a time, being careful not to scorch or curdle the mixture. If it’s gone too long, it will look like scrambled eggs. It should be smooth and shiny. Remove from heat and refrigerate.

Scoop hefty tablespoons of lemon curd in the middle of each sponge cake, layer berries on top, dust with powdered sugar and garnish with a sweet store-bought strawberry macaroon.

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