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Americans Are in a Grilling Rut

2008-08-04 11:11:00

Americans Are in a Grilling Rut

   Master Griller Mike Zeller Offers Quick and Easy Ways to Re-ignite the

     Flames of Your Grill for Your Labor Day Weekend Cookout and Beyond

    SHEBOYGAN FALLS, Wis., Aug. 4 /EMWNews/ -- The dog days of summer

are upon us, and most people admit that their BBQ menus are getting stale.

In fact, according to national survey on grilling fare, 84 percent of

Americans agree that hamburgers, hot dogs and chicken have become a

backyard bore. This year, Johnsonville reminds grillers to re-ignite

traditional Labor Day cookouts and backyard parties with more flavorful

alternatives -- juicy brats and savory sausages offering a delicious boost

to the standard grilling menu.


    Results from a national survey, conducted by Russell Research* on

behalf of Johnsonville Sausage, found nine out of 10 Americans agree

grilling is one of the best ways to infuse flavor into food, but admit it

can be challenging to come up with unique grilling recipes. The study also

revealed that 95 percent of Americans enjoy eating grilled foods other than

hot dogs and hamburgers. In fact, according to a recent taste-test

conducted by Johnsonville, more people who grill brats, hamburgers and hot

dogs preferred the taste of brats over the other meats.

    As the industry leader in sausage, Johnsonville is fired up to help

people bring flavor back to the grill with no-fuss grilling tips and

mouthwatering menu ideas for Labor Day weekend. And they're proving that

great taste doesn't have to be difficult to achieve, as most Americans (76

percent) find it easy to grill brats.

    "Brats stand out from the other grilling meats -- beef, chicken and hot

dogs -- because of their flavorful spices and juicy texture," says

Johnsonville Sausage Executive Chef Mike Zeller. "So in a way, not only is

variety the spice of life, but brats are, too!"

    For the 84 percent of Americans looking for new grilling options, Chef

Zeller suggests trying new and unique recipes incorporating your favorite

grilled items. One suggestion is the "Spicy Cracked Black Pepper Brats."

Spicy Cracked Black Pepper Brats by The Kitchen at Johnsonville Sausage Ingredients -- 1 pkg. (19.76 oz.) Johnsonville(R) Fresh Original Bratwurst -- 1 large onion, cut into 1/4-in. round slices -- 2 Tbsp. olive oil -- 1 medium green pepper -- 1 medium sweet red pepper -- 1 medium sweet yellow pepper -- 1 to 2 jalapeno peppers, optional -- 1 Tbsp. fresh cracked pepper -- 5 hoagie rolls, split Directions Grill brats according to package directions. Meanwhile, brush onion slices with oil. Grill over medium heat for 3-4 minutes per side or until crisp-tender and golden. Cut onion slices in half; place in a large bowl. Grill whole peppers until skins blister, about 3-4 minutes. With tongs, rotate peppers a quarter turn. Grill and rotate until all sides are blistered and blackened. Immediately place peppers in a bowl and cover or cool for 30 seconds, place in a large resealable plastic bag and seal; let stand for 10 minutes. Peel off and discard charred skin. Remove seeds. Slice peppers into 1/4-in. strips; place in bowl with onions. Add cracked pepper; toss gently. Place one brat in each roll. Top with pepper and onion mixture. Serve hot. Yield: 5 sandwiches. In addition to mouthwatering grilling recipes, Master Griller Zeller and Johnsonville have put together a few simple tips to help even the most inexperienced outdoor cooks take the "labor" out of Labor Day, while adding flavor to their grilling menus:
1. Be prepared: organize your ingredients and gear (tongs, pans, etc.) before venturing out to the grill. 2. Cook brats and sausages using the "indirect grilling" method: put coals to one side (or turn on half of the gas burners) and cook your brats on the opposite side of the grill. 3. To keep all of the juicy flavor in, only use tongs to handle your sausage. That means no forks, no scissors or anything else that could puncture the casing of your sausage. 4. To see if your brats are done, squeeze them with your tongs. If they're firm and the internal temperature is 180 degrees Fahrenheit, they're ready! This easy tip can help the 50 percent of grillers who find it challenging to determine when meats are completely cooked. To avoid the challenge altogether, try Johnsonville's Heat & Serve Brats or Smoked Brats -- they're pre-cooked and full of flavor! 5. Add hickory, mesquite or oak chips soaked in water directly to burning coals for a rich, smoky flavor. For more great grilling tips and recipes to spice up your Labor Day cookout, visit
*The Russell Omnibus was conducted among 1,044 adults across the United States.

    About Johnsonville Sausage

    Wisconsin-based Johnsonville Sausage is the number one national brand

of brats, Italian sausage, smoked-cooked links and fresh breakfast sausage

links. Johnsonville Sausage products are available in 27 countries

including France, Canada, Mexico, Japan, China and the United States.

Johnsonville employs 1,400 members. Each of them takes ownership of product

quality to ensure the excellence and "Big Taste" of Johnsonville Sausage.

Founded in 1945 by Ralph F. & Alice Stayer, the company remains privately

owned today.

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Blake Masterson

Freelance Writer, Journalist and Father of 5

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