The Flavors of Summer


The weather isn’t the only thing that’s sizzling this summer.   Many of us have already fired up the grill proclaiming that summer fun is in full swing.  Cotton Candy knows that this year, you’re looking for new, delectable, titillating recipes.  So we give you the eclectic, scrumptious creations of Chef Evelyn Paul.  When it comes to BBQ, Chef Paul shows us how to grill with a little TLC.

Grilled Heirloom Tomato Gazpacho


3 1/2 pounds firm, but ripe medium heirloom tomatoes

1 large red bell pepper

1 large red onion, unpeeled, quartered lengthwise

8 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

Salt to taste

Pepper to taste

2 garlic cloves

1 large seedless cucumber, peeled, cut into small cubes and divided

4 tablespoons red wine vinegar

2 teaspoons fresh cilantro, chopped

3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika*

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Grilled Heirloom Tomato Gazpacho

Grilled Heirloom Tomato Gazpacho


  1. Prepare grill to medium-high heat.
  2. Place the tomato, bell pepper and onion on baking sheet. Brush with 3 tablespoons oil; sprinkle with kosher salt and pepper.
  3. Place vegetables on grill and grill  until skins are charred, turning frequently, about 8 minutes for tomatoes. 10 minutes for onion and 15 minutes for pepper.
  4. Return to baking sheet.
  5. Remove and discard charred skins and cores from tomatoes.
  6. Peel, seed, and core pepper; coarsely chop.
  7. Remove and discard charred outer peel and core from onion. Reserve half of chopped cucumber for garnish.
  8. Working in two batches, add half each of tomatoes, pepper, onion and remaining cucumber to blender and blend until coarse puree forms.
  9. Transfer mixture to large bowl.
  10. Repeat with remaining tomatoes, pepper, and onion.
  11. Using garlic press, squeeze the two garlic cloves into mixture.
  12. Stir in remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil, 3 tablespoons vinegar, cilantro smoked paprika, cumin, and cayenne.
  13. Season with salt and pepper.
  14. Chill at least 2 hours.

For serving, garnish with drunken tomato relish.

Drunken Cherry Tomatoes


1 pint cherry tomatoes, quartered

1/2 cup tequila

2 tablespoon Sea salt

1 tablespoon fresh cilantro leaves, chopped very finely

1 tablespoon ground cumin

Pinch of cayenne pepper


  1. Put tomatoes in a shallow bowl and pour in tequila. Marinate the tomatoes at least two hours, turning often.
  2. With a slotted spoon remove the tomatoes and drain on paper towels.
  3. In a small serving bowl, combine sea salt, cilantro, cumin and cayenne.
  4. Mix well.

Use as garnish for Gazpacho.

Marinated and Smoked Shrimp

If the shrimp are going to be skewered, peel them completely– tail and all. Leave the tail on if they will be smoked loose on the grill, which makes eating with the fingers a little easier.


2 pounds Extra Large or Jumbo shrimp, deveined and peeled to include the tail

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lime juice

1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped

1 green onion, including green top, chopped

1 teaspoon fresh garlic, minced

Salt and pepper, to taste

Apple wood chips for smoking, soaked in water for one hour

Bamboo skewers

Marinated and Smoked Shrimp

Marinated and Smoked Shrimp


  1. Combine the olive oil, lime juice, herbs and garlic in a bowl.
  2. Add the shrimp to the marinade and refrigerate.
  3. Prepare the grill for smoking. Maintain a temperature near 225 degrees Fahrenheit as the shrimp are smoking.
  4. Wrap 1/4 to 1/2 cup of the soaked apple chips in a foil pouch. There’s no need to poke holes in the pouch, but do leave the seam at the top. The smoke will find its way out. Lay the foil pouch directly over the lit burner, or on the hot coals, under the grate.
  5. Remove the shrimp from the marinade and skewer. Discard the marinade.
  6. When the wood begins to smoke, place the shrimp skewers on the grill and close the lid.
  7. Smoke the shrimp using indirect heat for 20 to 30 minutes or until the shrimp have firmed up and are opaque. Don’t allow the smoked shrimp to cook too long in the grill, or they’ll become dry and tough.

Soy-Ginger Dipping Sauce


¼ cup soy sauce

1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced

1 Tablespoon fresh garlic, chopped

2 tablespoon wild flower honey

Juice of 2 limes

½ cup of rice vinegar

1 bunch of chopped scallions

3 heads of butter lettuce

4 sprigs of Thai basil

4 sprigs cilantro

Chef Evelyn Paul Summer BBQ

Chef Evelyn Paul Summer BBQ

Method: Combine first seven ingredients in a small bowl and hold.

To serve:

On a large platter lay out the butter lettuce leaves, then on each leaf, place a few basil and cilantro leaves. Rest the skewers of beef on the leaves. Have a guest grab a leaf, remove the skewer and enjoy with the ginger-soy dipping sauce.

Oven-Roasted Baby Back Ribs with a Pomegranate Barbeque Sauce

Pomegranate BBQ Sauce


1 cup pomegranate molasses

1 cup soy sauce

¼ cup ketchup

2 tablespoons mustard

4 garlic cloves, minced

¼ cup vegetable or safflower oil

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt


  1. In a saucepan combine all ingredients and bring to a slow boil, reduce to a simmer and stir occasionally to prevent scorching (about 20-25 minutes).
  2. Cool to about room temperature; cover and chill overnight or up to 2 days.

Baby Back Ribs with Pomegranate BBQ Sauce

Baby Back Ribs with Pomegranate BBQ Sauce

Rib Rub


¼ cup brown sugar

¼ cup paprika

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 teaspoon ground cloves

1 teaspoon ground ginger

2 teaspoons of ground black pepper

1 teaspoon kosher salt

Method: Combine all ingredients and store in airtight container until ready to use.

Grilled Sweet Potatoes with Citrus Dressing


3 sweet potatoes, unpeeled and washed

Kosher salt

2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest

Pinch of allspice

1/4 cup canola oil divided

Freshly ground pepper

Sweet Potatoes with Citrus Dressing

Sweet Potatoes with Citrus Dressing


  1. Par cook the potatoes: Place in a pot of water and boil until fork-tender; let cool.
  2. Slice each potato lengthwise into eighths.
  3. Preheat a grill to medium or place a cast-iron grill pan over medium heat.
  4. Mix 1 tablespoon salt, the lime zest and allspice in a small bowl.
  5. Brush the potato wedges with the ¼ cup of canola oil and season with salt and pepper and allspice and lime zest.
  6. Grill until golden brown on all sides (including the skin) and cook through, about 1 1/2 minutes per side.
  7. Transfer to a platter and drizzle with the citrus dressing  (recipe follows) and serve.

Citrus Dressing


1/2 cup white wine vinegar

1/4 orange juice

2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped

4 teaspoons grated lemon peel

4 teaspoons grated orange peel

1 cup vegetable oil


  1. Combine vinegar, orange juice, parsley, lemon peel and orange peel in small bowl.
  2. Gradually whisk in oil.
  3. Dressing can be prepared up to 8 hours ahead.

Cover and refrigerate and serve with grilled sweet potatoes.

Charred Corn and Avocado Salad


4 ears fresh corn, kernels removed from cob

1 cup grape tomatoes, halved

1/4 cup red onion, chopped

1/4 cup cilantro, chopped

¼ cup scallions, sliced

1 tablespoon lime juice

1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil

½ teaspoon fresh garlic, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

2 small ripe avocado, diced

Charred Corn and Avocado Salad

Charred Corn and Avocado Salad


  1. Prepare grill.
  2. Lightly coat corn with cooking spray.
  3. Place corn on grill rack; grill 20 minutes, turning occasionally.
  4. Cool completely.
  5. Cut kernels from ears of corn; place in a medium bowl. Discard cobs.
  6. Add tomatoes, onions, cilantro and scallions to bowl; toss well.
  7. Combine juice and remaining four ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk.
  8. Drizzle juice mixture over corn mixture; toss well.
  9. Add diced avocado and lightly toss.
  10. Cover and chill for at least three hours.

Peach Tart with Basil Ice Cream

Peach Tart


3/4 cup unbleached or all-purpose flour

Dash of salt

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

3 tablespoons cold water

1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Vegetable cooking spray

6 medium-sized Georgia peaches, thinly sliced & unpeeled

1 tablespoon peach juice

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon and 2 teaspoons brown sugar, divided

¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

¼ teaspoon ground ginger

Peach Tart with Basil Ice Cream

Peach Tart with Basil Ice Cream


  1. Combine flour and sugar in a bowl; cut in butter with a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse meal.
  2. Sprinkle with water and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla, stir with a fork until all dry ingredients are moistened.
  3. Shape dough into a rectangle and press into lightly-greased rectangular tart pan.
  4. Refrigerate until use.
  5. Combine peaches, peach juice, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1 Tablespoon brown sugar, nutmeg and ginger tossing well.
  6. Arrange peaches in layers on dough and fill to the top of the tart crust.
  7. Sprinkle with 2 teaspoons of sugar.
  8. Bake at 400 degrees for 25 minutes or until golden and crisp.
  9. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush with warmed melted apricot jam.

Serve warm with basil ice cream.

Basil Ice Cream


2 cups whole milk

2 cups heavy cream

Pinch of salt

1 cup sugar

1 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves

6 egg yolks


  1. In a saucepan, stir milk, cream and basil leaves together.
  2. Heat mixture to boiling and turn off heat. Let steep for 30 minutes.
  3. Transfer to a blender (reserve saucepan) and blend until basil is finely ground, about 1 minute.
  4. Beat together the egg yolks and sugar in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until thick and pale, about 1 minute.
  5. Slowly add milk mixture in a stream, beating until combined well.
  6. Pour mixture into reserved saucepan and cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until mixture coats back of spoon (do not let boil).
  7. Immediately remove from heat and pour through a fine-mesh sieve into a metal bowl.
  8. Set bowl in a larger bowl of ice water and stir until cold, 10 to 15 minutes.
  9. Freeze in ice cream maker.
  10. Transfer ice cream to an airtight container and put in freezer to harden, at least 2 hours.

Watermelon Mule

Serves 1

Watermelon Mule

Watermelon Mule


3/4 cup seedless watermelon chunks

2 oz. vodka

1 oz. fresh lime juice

1 teaspoon fresh ginger, minced

2 tablespoons agave nectar

Splash of club soda

1 lime


1. Purée the watermelon in a food processor until smooth then strain.

2. Pour the watermelon juice, vodka, lime, ginger and agave nectar into a cocktail shaker  filled with ice.

3. Shake vigorously and pour into a rocks glass filled with ice.

4. Top off with club soda and garnish with the slice of lime and a sprig of mint.

Carving a niche for herself as the premier personal chef to Atlanta’s discerning dining families, Caribbean-born personal chef Evelyn Paul takes great pleasure in recreating not only a five-star dining experience in the homes of her prominent clients, but the inviting environment of a mother’s intimate kitchen as well.

Photo Credit:  Heidi Geldhauser

Cotton Candy Magazine®