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Add a little fire to your Fourth

As fireworks light up the sky this Fourth of July, millions of Americans will light up their backyard grills to celebrate Independence Day.

For a hearty meal, consider a menu that includes spicy Latin back ribs, deviled eggs, coleslaw, potato salad, barbecued beans and corn bread. The recipes here will feed a crowd.

Robin Kline, a registered dietitian and director of the Pork Information Bureau in Des Moines, Iowa, says foods like potato salad and coleslaw have roots in other cultures, but they've been claimed as American classics.

This year, Kline suggests, celebrate the Fourth of July by adding ethnic ingredients and flavors. Hot is "hot," so she suggests spicing up deviled eggs with hot peppers or adding blue cornmeal to traditional corn bread.

"Changing just one ingredient can change the flavor _ and color _ of an entire meal," Kline says. These recipes are provided by the National Pork Producers Council.

Spicy Latin Back Ribs

Spicy Latin Rub (recipe on this page)

Rockets' Red Glare Barbecue Sauce (recipe on this page)

6 to 8 slabs pork baby back ribs (about 12 pounds total)

Prepare Spicy Latin Rub; set aside. Prepare Rockets' Red Glare Barbecue Sauce; set aside.

Pat ribs with paper towels. Rub Spicy Latin Rub generously over all surfaces of ribs; cover and refrigerate up to 12 hours or cook immediately. Prepare a banked, medium-hot fire in each of two or three kettle-style grills.

Place ribs, not overlapping, over indirect heat on each grill (rib racks may be helpful in expanding grilling space in each grill). Cover grills and roast ribs not directly over coals for 1{ hours, until ribs are very tender. (Or roast ribs on rack in shallow pan in a 350-degree oven for 1{ hours). Remove ribs from grill, wrap securely in heavy aluminum foil. Place foil-wrapped ribs in brown paper bags, close bags and let ribs rest for up to 1 hour. Unwrap ribs, cut into serving-sized portions and serve with Rockets' Red Glare Barbecue Sauce for dipping. Makes 12 to 16 servings.

Spicy Latin Rub: In large jar with tight-fitting lid, place { cup ground cumin, { cup chili powder, 4 tablespoons ground coriander, 2 tablespoons cayenne, 4 tablespoons ground black pepper, 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, 2 tablespoons brown sugar and 1 tablespoon salt. Place lid on jar; shake well until blended thoroughly. Makes 2 cups.

Rockets' Red Glare

Barbecue Sauce

2 12-ounce bottles chili sauce

2 garlic cloves, minced

cup ketchup

cup cider vinegar

cup brown sugar

3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

3 tablespoons sherry

2 tablespoons chili powder

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Stir together all ingredients in medium saucepan; bring to a boil and lower heat just to a simmer.

Simmer for 20 minutes; stirring occasionally, until mixture is thickened and flavors are nicely blended.

Remove to medium bowl or quart-sized jar; cool slightly, cover and refrigerate.

Makes 4 cups.

Black and Blue Cole Slaw

1 medium head red cabbage, shredded (6 cups)

{ pound seedless grapes, halved

1 cup chopped parsley

} cup mayonnaise (reduced-calorie, if

desired)

4 tablespoons crumbled blue cheese

4 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard

2 tablespoons sugar

2 tablespoons cider vinegar

In large bowl, toss together cabbage, grapes and parsley. Stir together remaining ingredients, add to slaw; toss well. Cover and chill for at least 2 hours before serving. If desired, sprinkle with additional crumbled blue cheese and garnish with red grapes. Makes 12 to 16 servings.

Dr. Bill's Barbecued Beans

8 ounces bacon, diced

1 medium sweet onion, diced

1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced

1 green bell pepper, seeded and diced

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup bottled barbecue sauce

{ teaspoon liquid smoke

1 teaspoon Worcestershire

sauce

2 teaspoons ground black pepper

cup maple syrup

cup light corn syrup

Three 28-ounce cans pork and beans, drained

cup dark beer or apple juice

In large skillet, fry bacon until lightly browned; remove extra fat from pan and discard. Stir onion and bell peppers into skillet; saute until vegetables are tender, about 3 to 4 minutes.

In large casserole or shallow 3- to 4-quart baking dish, stir together bacon, vegetables and remaining ingredients. Cover and bake in a 350-degree oven for 45 to 60 minutes, until heated through. Makes 12 to 16 servings.

Blue Heaven Corn Bread

2 cups flour

2 cups blue cornmeal

2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons baking powder

6 tablespoons sugar

1{ teaspoons salt

2 cups milk

4 eggs, beaten

{ cup vegetable oil

Heat oven to 425 degrees. Lightly grease two 8-inch square baking pans. In a large bowl, blend dry ingredients well. In medium bowl, beat together milk, eggs and oil. Make a well in dry ingredients; add liquid ingredients and stir together, blending well but not overstirring (some lumps are okay). Divide batter equally between prepared baking pans. Bake in a 425-degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until tops are nicely browned. Remove from oven and cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting into squares to serve. Makes 12 to 16 servings.

Double Deviled Eggs

12 large eggs, hard cooked and peeled

{ cup mayonnaise (reduced-calorie, if desired)

2 teaspoons Dijon-style mustard

{ teaspoon ground white pepper

2 jalapeno peppers, seeded and finely diced (use rubber gloves when handling peppers)

2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish

Fresh cilantro, for garnish

Halve the eggs lengthwise. Remove the yolks and put in a small bowl; mash with the mayonnaise and the mustard. Stir in the remaining ingredients, except the cilantro. Taste for seasoning, adding salt or pepper if desired.

Transfer yolk mixture to a quart-sized, self-sealing plastic bag. Snip off a small part of one corner, and use the bag as a pastry bag to pipe the filling into the egg white halves. Place eggs on a serving tray, cover and refrigerate until serving (up to one day).

Garnish eggs with fresh cilantro sprigs. Makes 12 to 16 servings.

Stars and Stripes Spud Salad

4 pounds small new red potatoes, cleaned and halved

8 cloves garlic, peeled

{ cup olive oil

1 tablespoon black pepper

1 teaspoon salt

For the Dressing:

} cup mayonnaise (reduced-calorie, if desired)

3 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon mustard seed

8 slices bacon, cooked, drained and crumbled

{ cup diced red onion

{ cup minced green pepper

Salt, to taste

Black pepper, to taste

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Combine potatoes, garlic, olive oil, 1 tablespoon black pepper and the 1 teaspoon salt in a roasting pan; cover with foil. Bake in a 400-degree oven for 15 minutes, uncover and continue to roast for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender and slightly golden brown.

Remove from oven, let cool slightly, and cut potatoes into quarters; mash the garlic cloves. Place potato quarters and mashed garlic in serving bowl.

For dressing: In small bowl, combine all ingredients.

Pour dressing over potatoes; toss gently. Taste and adjust seasoning; serve immediately or cover and refrigerate until serving. Makes 12 to 16 servings.

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