Hot Off The Grill

Heat up your Father’s Day celebration with some sizzling recipes

By Zara Abbasi, Photography by Katie Childs


We are in the process of moving and life has been unstructured, to say the least. But throughout the moving process, both my father and father-in-law have been a call away to help with advice or actual work for the house. Isn’t that what dads do? They’re always there to make sure things go smoothly for you, to discuss the best lawn care with you, and to make sure that you’re making smart financial decisions. They’re the ones who took us to baseball games and planned fun road trips. And, man do they love grandkids. My father-in-law has been so gracious with his time that he has become our primary babysitter because he loves it so much. There’s not been one event he has not been there for. Whatever support we need, he’s there for us in mind and spirit without fail. Both of my in-laws have been absolutely wonderful in this aspect.

One thing that my dad did was give me the most influential advice in my life. I don’t know if he knew at the time how important his words would be, but they lit a spark in me. He told me that humans are capable of extraordinary things. They go to the moon, they rule nations, they do whatever they want to do. “You are human, too,” he said. “You’re no different than the man on the moon or a discoverer, adventurer, a teacher, a lawyer or whatever. You are all those things and anything else you want.” Those words have truly coursed through my veins and I feel unafraid to try my hand at anything I wan, and it’s because of his fearless nature. I truly want to thank him for that. He also taught me generosity and being humble, yet proud, of yourself. He taught me to live fearlessly. I am so much of what my dad has taught me. What a blessing it is to be his daughter.

What I didn’t realize through all these years of honoring our dads was what a blessing it has been to watch my own husband become the dad that he is. He has an extremely stressful job but he takes the kids to school without fail in the mornings; he’s been at every basketball practice; every karate tournament; every rock climbing adventure; every talent show; he reads to the kids every night; he teaches them about Shakespeare and architecture; and like every mom out there, he questions if he’s being the best parent he can be. I can assure him that he is. These kids of ours love him and both their grandfathers beyond measure.

Grilling out for Father’s Day is a tradition that we share with loads of other families who celebrate wonderful dads with amazing grilled foods! I hope you give these recipes a try!


Grilled Flank Steak with Chimichurri

Hot dogs and burgers are great grilled foods. They’ve withstood the test of time because they’re so dang good and reliable. But for Father’s day, let’s switch it up and make something equally easy, yet wildly different in taste. This flank steak is so flavorful that you’ll want to make extra chimichurri to keep on hand for use on your eggs the next morning. This dish will have the dads in your life nodding their heads in proud approval.

1½ to 2 pounds flank steak (can use skirt or thin ribeye if needed)
2 tablespoons fresh garlic cloves
1 cup fresh flat leaf parsley
½ cup cilantro
2 cups good olive oil
½ cup fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons dried oregano
1-2 tablespoons red pepper flakes (optional)
Salt to taste

1. In a food processor, add the garlic and pulse until minced. Add in the parsley and cilantro and pulse until finely chopped. Add in the remaining ingredients (except steak) and blend until fully incorporated. Set aside.


2. Marinate the steak. Place the steak and about 1/3 of the sauce in a large dish or Ziplok bag and let it marinate in the fridge for 30 minutes to 2 hours before grilling.

3. To grill, get the grill hot at 400-450 degrees and grill the steak about 4-5 minutes on each side or until medium rare (my preference) 130-140 degrees Fahrenheit. Timings depend on thickness or thinness of the meat, so be sure to use a meat thermometer to ensure the doneness you’d like.

4. Let the meat rest for a few minutes and then slice against the grain and top with half the remaining chimichurri. Serve the rest of the sauce in a bowl for dipping, or for the next day. I always make extra, but you can easily cut the recipe in half.


Garlic Grilled Potatoes in Packets

When serving a flavorful steak like this one, we definitely need a strong side dish that’ll hold up to all the flavors but still provide heartiness. I love these potatoes because they’re so hands-off. When you’re hosting, the last thing you want is to be stuck in the kitchen while others are outside having fun. That’s why these potatoes are so good. You just season everything in the foil packet and then pop the whole thing on the grill. While the steak is marinating, the potatoes are already cooking away!

3 pounds baby Yukon gold or red fingerling potatoes
5-6 peeled garlic cloves
1 large onion cut into thick dice
6-8 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 tablespoon dried oregano
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Create a large bowl with two sheets of foil placed on top of each other. It’s better to cut bigger sheets of foil to be on the safe side.

2. Add in the cleaned potatoes in the center of the foil bowl. Add in the garlic, onion and drizzle with the olive oil.

3. Add in thyme, salt and pepper and then gently toss to mix everything.

4. Seal the foil bowl completely and place on a heated grill for approximately 30 minutes. Make sure they are fork tender and then serve immediately.

Easy Key Lime Pie

And now, for dessert. What better way to cool off from the heat and the flavor-packed meal you just made than with a homemade key lime pie? This dessert can be made the night before or even 3-4 hours before you’ll serve it because it comes together so quickly and just needs the majority of the time to cool. This pie is cold, tart, sweet and refreshing. And, it’ll be the perfect end to your celebration!


1 prepared graham cracker crust 
24 ounces sweetened condensed milk
½ cup sour cream
¾ cup fresh key lime or lime juice
2 egg yolks
Zest from 1 lime

Whipped cream: 1 cup heavy cream, 1 tablespoon vanilla extract, 4 tablespoons powdered sugar. Beat all ingredients until stiff and fluffy.

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Combine ingredients (except whipped cream ingredients) and beat on medium high for 2-3 minutes.

3. Pour filling into crust and bake for 15-20 minutes, but do not allow the pie to brown. Let cool to room temperature and then refrigerate for at least 3 hours.

4. Make whipped cream and top the pie either in a rustic or decorative manner when ready to serve. Garnish the top with a little crushed graham cracker and lime zest. Serve and enjoy!