Recipe Recap

Six dishes to make right now

It's that time of year: Grills are being dusted off in anticipation of the first warm days of the season.

Is this the year you step up your barbecue game? We're here to help.

Instead of chips and dip, serve crudités with a new take on hummus that swaps black-eyed peas for the garbanzos and thick Greek yogurt for tahini.

Get the best sausages you can find (like these or these), then make the best potato salad, using fingerling potatoes and this recipe from Bierbeisl in Beverly Hills.

Toting a side dish to a barbecue? Bring roasted onions with sage pesto, an exclusive recipe we scored from chef April Bloomfield; it's as welcome a burger topping as you're likely to find.

For dessert, serve bowls of ice cream drizzled with homemade hot fudge. And to drink? Well, cola, of course, but not just any pop: Win friends and influence people by serving them your from-scratch version of the fizzy beverage.

Obviously, beer should also be offered at any spring gathering. But what to do with the leftover brews? Use them to make a batch of rhubarb-beer jam, which you can savor long after picnic weather has come and gone.