Sunny Anderson Raises Money for Veterans in New Safe Grilling Campaign

Today the Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) and the Food Network personality Sunny Anderson announce the launch of Grilling for Heroes, a campaign to collect grilling recipes and donations supporting veterans while raising awareness of safe grilling practices. 

From July 4 through September 30, 2014, grilling enthusiasts can submit their best recipes online at along with a short anecdote about what the military means to them. After the submission period closes on September 30, the top 100 entries will be compiled into an online cookbook, which will be available for download Memorial Day 2015. Anderson will also choose her favorite recipe and story submission, and the winner will receive a free trip to Washington, D.C. 

"Grilling is not only an American pastime but also one of my favorite ways to prepare delicious food," Anderson says. "The opportunity to educate my fans and grillers about basic propane grill safety while also honoring fellow military personnel and veterans is deeply important to me."

Goodwill donations from participating propane retailers and the public will be accepted in exchange for free downloads of the e-cookbook next summer. One hundred percent of the proceeds will benefit veterans through Hope For The Warriors, a nonprofit whose programs enhance the quality of life for post-9/11 service members and their families. 

According to Webers annual GrillWatch survey, more than 60 percent of American home grillers use a propane gas grill. As July Fourth - the top grilling holiday of the year - approaches, PERC reminds grillers to follow important safety tips: 

1. Follow instructions. Always follow the manufacturers instructions for assembling, using, and maintaining your grill.
2. Keep it outdoors. Outdoor propane grills should be located on a level surface at least five feet from the house, siding, outdoor furniture, and anything else that could be a fire hazard.
3. Be smart when lighting and relighting. Keep the lid open and dont lean over the grill when lighting it. If the flame goes out, turn off the gas and refer to the owners manual. At a minimum, the National Fire Protection Association advises grillers to turn off the gas, keep the lid open, and wait at least 15 minutes before relighting.
4. Be present. A true grill master never leaves a grill unattended.
5. Check for leaks. Use a soapy water solution to check connections for leaks. Expanding bubbles indicate a leak. Follow this procedure when replacing a cylinder

For more information about the campaign, for safe grilling tips, or to submit a grilling recipe and military story, visit

About PERC: The Propane Education & Research Council (PERC) is a nonprofit that provides leading propane safety and training programs and invests in the research and development of new propane-powered technologies. PERC is operated and funded by the propane industry. For more information, visit

Recipe by Sunny Anderson   
(Makes 8 servings)

For the steak:
· 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
· 1 tablespoon hot sauce, such as Frank's Red Hot
· Salt and freshly ground black pepper
· 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
· 1/2 teaspoon Hungarian paprika
· 1 lime, zested and juiced
· 1 pound flank steak

For the gravy:
· 2 tablespoons butter
· 1 tablespoon olive oil
· 1-1/2 cups frozen pearl onions, thawed (6 ounces)
· 5 to 6 sprigs fresh thyme
· 8 ounces baby bella mushrooms, sliced
· 3 cloves garlic, grated on a rasp
· Salt
· 4 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
· 1 tablespoon horseradish
· 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
· 1-1/2 cups beef stock
· 1 pint heavy cream

For the toast:
· 8 slices Texas toast, or unsliced bread cut to 1-inch thick slices
· 1 stick butter, at room temperature
· 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
· 5 to 6 sprigs fresh thyme
· 3 cloves garlic, mashed into a paste with some salt

1. For the steak: To a large resealable bag, add the red wine vinegar, hot sauce, 1 teaspoon salt, Worcestershire sauce, paprika, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and lime zest and juice. Mix together and add the flank steak. Marinate for 1 hour in the refrigerator.

2. Preheat the grill to medium-high.

3. Remove the steak from the marinade and discard the marinade. Pat the steak dry and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill over medium-high heat until cooked to medium-rare, 5 to 6 minutes per side. Let rest 10 minutes, loosely covered with aluminum foil, before slicing.

4. For the gravy: In a large pan with straight sides, add the butter, olive oil, onions and thyme. Season with salt and pepper and cook over medium heat until the onions are tender and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and garlic, season with salt and cook gently until the mushrooms are tender and darkened, about 5 minutes more. Add the Worcestershire sauce and horseradish. Sprinkle the flour over the entire pan. Stir to help the flour to soak into the vegetables and cook a minute more to lose the flour flavor. Raise the heat to medium-high and add the beef stock. Cook until slightly thickened, then slowly stir in the heavy cream. Simmer until the cream is thickened slightly, about 4 minutes more. Taste and season with salt, if needed.

5. For the toast: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F or a grill to medium heat.

6. Arrange the sliced bread on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. In a small pot, add the butter, onion powder, thyme and garlic and season with salt. Heat over medium-low heat until the butter is melted. Brush the garlic butter evenly onto the bread. If baking, place in the oven and bake until the edges are golden, about 10 minutes. If grilling, place the bread slices buttered-side down on the grill and grill until toasted and grill marks appear, 2 to 3 minutes.

7. To serve, layer the toast, then slices of beef and pour over a spoonful of gravy.

Grilled Fruit Salad with Honey-Yogurt Dressing
Recipe Courtesy: Sunny Anderson

1 pineapple, cored and sliced into 8 rings
2 plums, cored and each cut into 8 wedges
Vegetable oil, for brushing fruit
3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/4 cup honey
1 tablespoon finely chopped mint leaves
1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted

Preheat grill to medium. Lightly brush fruit with oil and place on the grill. Cook until pineapple and plums are nicely caramelized, turning once, about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove to a plate. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl whisk together yogurt, honey and mint. Place 2 rings and 4 wedges on each plate and drizzle with dressing. Garnish with pine nuts.

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