Use either your favorite homemade BBQ sauce or a store-bought sauce. Our favorite brand is Bull’s-Eye Original Barbecue Sauce.
ready in about 25 minutes; serves 4
You might need to buy:
  • Salt and pepper
  • barbecue sauce
  • minced chipotle chile in adobo
  • water
  • shredded cheddar cheese

Flank steaks smaller or larger than 2 pounds can be used, but adjust the amount of salt and pepper accordingly. We prefer flank steak cooked rare or medium-rare. If the steak is to retain its juices, it must be allowed to rest before being sliced. If using a gas grill, cook the steak over high heat, following the times in step 3, but keep the cover down. If the meat is significantly underdone when tested with a paring knife, turn off one burner and position the steak so that the thinner side is over the cool part of the grill and the thicker side is over the hot part of the grill.

ready in about 40 minutes; serves 4
You might need to buy:
  • For Marinade:
  • vegetable oil
  • For Steak:
  • kosher salt
  • ground black pepper
Belongs to jerseyjenny Deviled Eggs 

Deviled eggs are a classic picnic snack prone to an all-too-common problem: a greenish colored yolk and a sulfurous odor. What causes the problem and how do you make perfect deviled eggs every time? Here’s what we discovered:

Test Kitchen Discoveries

  • Don’t boil the eggs. After countless tests, the test kitchen found it best to cover the eggs with an inch of water, bring to a boil, cover, and remove from the heat. After 10 minutes, drain the eggs and cool in ice water. The gentle heat perfectly cooks the eggs—not a chance of the green tinge or unpleasant smell.
  • For the creamiest texture, force the yolks through a fine-mesh sieve before mixing with the filling ingredients.
  • For an elegant appearance, pipe the filling into the egg white shells with an impromptu pastry bag prepared from a zipper-lock bag. Simply place the filling in the bag, squeeze it tightly into one corner of the bag, and snip 1/2 inch off that corner. The filling can also be stored this way, at the ready, for up to two days. Just don’t cut the bag until you’re ready to fill the eggs.

To center the yolks, turn the carton of eggs on its side in the refrigerator the day before you plan to cook the eggs.

ready in about 35 minutes; serves 12
You might need to buy:
  • large eggs
  • mayonnaise
  • sour cream
  • distilled white vinegar
  • sugar
  • table salt
  • ground black pepper

This recipe can easily be doubled. If only celery salt is available, use the same amount but omit the addition of salt in the dressing. When testing the potatoes for doneness, simply taste a piece; do not overcook the potatoes or they will become mealy and will break apart. The potatoes must be just warm, or even fully cooled, when you add the dressing. If you find the potato salad a little dry for your liking, add up to 2 tablespoons more mayonnaise.

This variation of our All-American Potato Salad was published in our cookbook The Best Make-Ahead Recipe.

ready in about 50 minutes; serves 12
You might need to buy:
  • Table salt
  • distilled white vinegar
  • sweet pickle relish
  • minced red onion
  • minced fresh parsley leaves
  • celery seed
  • powdered mustard
  • Ground black pepper

Hamburgers are easily one of America’s most popular foods and the true test of a grill cook. A great grilled burger is well browned on the exterior and juicy and tender on the inside. But they rarely turn out that way. More likely, they are gray, tough, and bland. We wanted to make the ultimate no-holds-barred burger. Here’s what we discovered:

Test Kitchen Discoveries

Make a “panade”—a blend of breadcrumbs and milk—to bind the burgers together.

Add bacon fat to the beef mixture. The rich, smoky-tasting fat adds flavor and will keep the meat moist.

A little minced garlic goes far in flavoring the meat.

Be gentle with the beef mixture while mixing and shaping the burgers. Overworking will yield tough, dense burgers.

For this recipe, you want ground beef that is 85 percent to 90 percent lean. With the added bacon fat, 80 percent lean beef will make slightly greasy burgers. Crumble the cooked bacon slices over a salad, or use the slices as a burger topping.

ready in about 25 minutes; serves 4
You might need to buy:
  • bacon
  • milk
  • table salt
  • ground black pepper
  • Vegetable oil for grill rack