A Cookout for Dad

Now that summer is in full swing, a backyard barbecue is the perfect way to celebrate Dad's special day—and our do-ahead menu makes it easy on the cook.

The centerpiece of the meal is a spicy beef brisket. Our recipe streamlines preparation of this hefty cut, which typically requires hours of cooking over a hot smoky grill. As early as the day before, the brisket is braised indoors in a slow cooker until tender and succulent. Then, just before serving, the meat is quickly grilled and slathered with a piquant sauce, producing a crisp caramelized exterior and enticing smoky flavor. Likewise, the potatoes for the salad are simmered on the stovetop until almost tender, then finished on the grill. Round out the meal with creamy coleslaw and chipotle-spiked corn bread; both can be made ahead of time, as well.

With most of the work done in advance, you'll have plenty of time to spend with the guest of honor. And isn't that what Father's Day is all about?