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Summer’s coming. Time to clean out the wading pool, manicure the lawn and of course, invite the family for a barbecue. Set up the picnic table, spread out the checkered tablecloth and pass the paper plates. Nothing says summer more than burgers and hot dogs cooked on the grill.

But wait. Don’t stop there. Show the folks how creative you are. Gone are the days of basic barbecuing. Whether it's gas, electric or charcoal, the grill is perfect for cooking a wide variety of foods. And, on a sizzling summer day, cooking outside on the grill can keep your kitchen cool.

You’re familiar with the old standbys: burgers, hot dogs, brats, sausage, steak and chicken. Now, try fish. Cooking fish on the grill is a good way to prevent it from getting dry. Purchase fish fillets in whole pieces to preserve moisture. Coat a piece of aluminum foil with cooking spray and lay fish skin side down. Brush with marinade or soy sauce and add seasonings. Place on the grill and pierce a few holes in the foil to make certain the fish is exposed to the heat. Or, for a steamed effect, wrap the fish completely in the foil. Cook until the meat is no longer translucent. Yields tender, juicy and flavorful fish.

Not a fish fan? Prepare a piping hot pizza. Yes, pizza on the grill. It sounds funny, but it tastes delicious. Start by baking your own crust or use a store bought variety. Assemble the pizza as usual with sauce, cheese and your favorite toppings. Then, “bake” it on the grill. Cook the pizza on low heat with the cover on, until the cheese melts and the crust browns. If you use a charcoal grill keep a close watch so that the crust does not burn, as it is exposed to direct flame. Yields a crowd-pleasing pizza with a crunchy crust. Serve hot.

Gas grill owners can even effortlessly “smoke” a turkey. Just prepare a turkey as you would to bake it. Fill a foil pan ¾ full with water and your choice of spices. Remove the top grate of the grill and place the pan of water on top of the briquettes inside. Replace the grate and place the turkey on it. Cook covered and refer to the turkey package label for length of cooking time. Be sure to rotate the turkey every 30 minutes so that it cooks evenly. Inside the covered grill the heated, seasoned water will produce steam that will penetrate the turkey and add a smoky flavor. This process works with whole chickens, too.

Baking potatoes and roasting corn-on-the-cob are popular barbecuing options. Grilling works wonders with vegetables, too. For steamed veggies, distance them from direct flame by cooking on a special upper grate, or brush vegetables with olive oil and place directly on the conventional grate to roast them. Either way, grilling transforms most vegetables into a treat that even finicky kids will eat!

And, speaking of kids, how about barbecuing dessert? Use a covered grill to cook anything you would otherwise bake in an oven. Pies, cakes, brownies, cookies and even baked apples are all viable options. For best results, use foil pans. They properly conduct the heat and you won’t burn the bottoms of your good cookware.

Go ahead! Be inventive. Become a barbecuing expert. Bake a lasagna, make a meatloaf or simmer a pot of chili. This summer, create delicious delicacies and impress everyone at your family gathering. No one will guess that you did it all on the grill.