Who doesn’t love fall and hanging out in the backyard around a fire pit? A fire pit is anything from a simple campfire such as a portable cast iron or copper fire pit to an elaborate permanent brick or stone barbecue pit. With a few accessories and some creativity, you can have quite a set-up without spending a lot of money and the kids and friends will love it!

One advantage to a fire pit is that you can burn either wood or charcoal as your fuel for heat. Most standard grills do not have the capability or size to accommodate a wood fire. Fire pits are also great because they are large and several people can stand or sit around the fire pit and enjoy the warmth and great aromas. 

One great accessory is a pie iron or cooking iron. REI has a nice selection of irons to choose from. You want to get one that will withstand extreme heat over and over so invest in a good one-read reviews.

Growing up we would cook a variety of items in our pie iron or what we would call a “camper pie maker.” There are so many great recipes you can put into a pie iron-everything from breakfast, lunch, and dinner to desserts that can be used when camping, sleeping in the backyard with the kids or having friends over to hang out around the fire. 

Here are a few recipes with Bellisari’s Gourmet Convenience products that can easily be used when creating pie iron recipes for friends and family.

Balsamic Grilled Cheese

Serves 4

Ingredients:
8 (6-inch) diagonal baguette slices
1 1/2 T unsalted butter, softened
1/2 jar 
Bellisari's Balsamic Shallot & Black Garlic Spread
6 oz firm-ripe brie, cut into thin wedges
1/2 Gala apple, halved lengthwise, cored, and cut into thin slices

Directions:
Put the locked pie iron in the fire to warm briefly for about 1 minute. Open the pie iron and lay flat on the ground and carefully spread each side with butter. Place the baguette slices on each side, making sure they are cut larger than the pie iron to cut down the excess when closed at end.  Divide cheese and apple among them. Season apple with salt and pepper, add 1 tablespoon of 
Bellisari's Balsamic Shallot & Black Garlic Spread and top with the other slice of bread and lock the pie iron. Cut off excess bread and put in fire for 4 minutes each side or until golden brown. Enjoy!

Calabrian BLT

Serves 6

Ingredients:
2 1/2 cups fresh basil leaves
1/3 cup of mayo
1/2 jar of 
Bellisari's Calabrian & Sweet Tomato Fennel Spread
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
12 thick-sliced pre-cooked bacon strips 
12 1/2-inch thick slices fresh country-style white bread
2 ripe avocados, pitted, peeled, sliced
1 red onion, thinly sliced
6 romaine lettuce leaves

Directions:
Mix basil and mayonnaise in processor until basil is finely chopped and mixture is well blended. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.)

Put the locked pie iron in the fire to warm briefly for about 1 minute. Open the pie iron and lay flat on the ground and carefully spread each side with butter. Place the bread slices on each side, spread half of mayo mixture over 1 side of bread. Top each with a tablespoon of Bellisari's Calabrian & Sweet Tomato Fennel Spread. Top with avocado slices, bacon, onion and lettuce. Top with other slice of bread and lock pie iron. Cut off excess bread and put in fire for 4 minutes each side or until golden brown.