Bittersweet: Father’s Day

June 15, 2016

I’ve been trying to figure out what to serve for our Father’s Day feast this year, and while I’d like for there to be a surprise dish on the menu, just for fun, I’m having trouble making decisions, so we shall see. Maybe the surprise will come in the form of a cocktail, since this Father’s Day will be bittersweet without Mama at the table. A cocktail will probably be a very welcome way to kick off the afternoon, especially because it’s gonna be a scorcher.

Speaking of Father’s Day, I’d like to share this picture of Daddy-o from the family archives. It’s a classic:

hairdo daddy

Poor Daddy-o. He was on the road so much when my sister and I were little that on the rare weekends he was home, we manhandled and pestered him to death for attention. I’m sure he really had no idea what to do with us girls.

One thing that’s sure to be on the menu this weekend? Beef. My father dearly loves his beef, and after he and Mama visited (and fell in love with) Argentina a few years ago, I have just the way to serve it. Skewered and doused with Chimichurri sauce! Chimichurri is a funny sounding name, but that’s about the only funny thing about this condiment. This Argentine-style sauce, sort of a mix between a sauce and a salsa, packs a flavor wallop–it’s punched up with all sorts of good things like fresh herbs and garlic and tangy vinegar. It’s the perfect foil for the richness of a good hunk-o-meat, and believe me, we’re going to buy only the best-quality, grass-fed organic beef for a Father’s Day feast.

Another thing that’s near and dear to my daddy’s heart is sweet summer corn. Can you blame him? In the words of the wise Garrison Keillor: “People have tried and they have tried, but sex is not better than sweet corn.” I kind of have to agree with the guy.

At its zenith, summer corn is so juicy and sweet that it hardly needs any adornment, save perhaps a kiss of butter and a sprinkle of salt. I don’t think we’re quite at peak season yet, so I think I may gild the lily a little with an herb-studded butter or a smoky Chipotle/butter glaze like the recipe below. The glaze would stand up to the bold flavor of the Chimichurri quite nicely.

The dudes in my life definitely deserve to eat well on their big day, that’s for sure.






Argentine Beef Skewers


serves 4 to 6

from Weber’s Way to Grill


1 cup fresh Italian parsley leaves, leaves and tender stems

1/2 cup fresh basil leaves

1/4 cup chopped white onion, rinsed

1/4 cup chopped carrot

1 medium garlic clove

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons rice vinegar


1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon paprika

1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 pounds top sirloin, about an inch thick, cut into 1-inch cubes

extra-virgin olive oil

18 cherry tomatoes

In a food processor, finely chop the parsley, basil, onion, carrot, garlic and salt. With the machine running, pour in olive oil and vinegar, until sauce is fairly thick.

Mix the rub ingredients together.

Place the steak cubes in a large bowl and toss lightly with a little olive oil. Add the rub; toss. Set aside at room temperature for 20-30 minutes.

Thread meat and tomatoes alternately on skewers. Grill the skewers over direct high heat, with the lid closed as much as possible, until cooked through–6 to 8 minutes total for medium rare, turning occasionally.

Let meat rest 5 minutes, coat with sauce or, alternatively, serve with sauce on the side.






Chipotle-Lime Glazed Corn

serves 6

adapted from weber’s Way to Grill


1/3 cup low-sodium chicken broth

4 tablespoons butter

1 tablespoon sugar

1 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/2 teaspoon chipotle puree**

6 ears fresh corn

Prepare your grill for direct cooking over medium heat.

Shuck the corn and remove all silk. If you like, you can pull the husks back, but leave them attached at the stem end so they make a nifty little handle.

Grill the corn over direct medium heat, with the lid closed as much as possible, for 10 to 15 minutes, turning occasionally.

Meanwhile, combine glaze ingredients in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil; continue to cook over medium high heat (boiling) for about 5 minutes or until glaze thickens.

Brush grilled corn with glaze and enjoy.




sleeping d 2


Despite a spring shadowed with loss, I feel so grateful to be spending this weekend with two of the finest men I know. Throughout this whole ordeal, my husband has been an incredible source of support and understanding. Nothing has been easy–I haven’t been easy, that’s for sure–but he’s been patient as a saint.

And damn, he’s an amazing father.



sach and meems

I’ll be counting my blessings as I toast the men in my life this weekend, and I hope you readers have a wonderful day with the loved ones in your lives, and can raise a glass in honor.

Much love,


{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Annie June 16, 2016 at 3:44 am

Chimichurri is one of my favorites- so much flavor packed in a little sauce! It looks like you have a splendid menu lined up for the men in your life. Perhaps some kind of surprise lemon dessert? It’s going to be hotter than blazes here so we are grilling too. Love to you all.


Dana Talusani June 16, 2016 at 6:42 am

You read my mind! Lemon sherbet, via David Leibovitz!


Camille June 16, 2016 at 10:26 am

Oh. Again. I have all the chills and bittersweet feels. thank you!


Biz June 16, 2016 at 9:52 pm

Yep, the first year of first sucks ass, but you know what – you are blessed – two beautiful daughters, your Papa and your hubs – I am still really trying to find the joy in each day, and I realize I can’t keep pining for the past, but enjoy each day as it comes. You are always in my thoughts – and send big hugs your way :D

p.s. you Papa is probably happy about the Cubs so far this year!


Dana Talusani June 19, 2016 at 9:44 am

Biz, my favorite Cubbies fan is over the moon :)


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