"Bless us, O Lord, and these Thy gifts, which we are about to receive from Thy bounty, through Christ our Lord. Amen."

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

~ Simple Summer Salad ~

These are *leftover* pictures from a few July meals...

Casabas are one of my favorite types of melons...my mouth is watering just thinking about them.
I place them in the refrigerator before I slice them up.  Spoon out the *innards*, then slice.  I usually cut them into smaller squares and serve them like this:
They are sweet and juicy and the texture is soft. 

I love salads...they are so easy and make great meals, just add some protein like chicken, tuna, salmon...anything.  I also sprinkle on nuts, usually almonds, sliced or whole - whatever I have on hand.

Grilled chicken can be eaten just like this, or sliced to use on a salad, etc...We usually cook up more than we need in order to use the following day.  Cooking extra saves time!  Leftover chicken is delicious cold on salad or easily warmed with some rice or other side dish.  You really don't need much to make a meal.  Again, use the palm of your hand to measure your serving size for protein.

Popular summer fruits in our area are cherries, apricots, peaches, nectarines, watermelon and strawberries.  I tell my children to eat up, because when they are in season...they are not to be missed.

We usually eat strawberries plain.  No whip, or occasionally dipped in chocolate for fancy occasions, or the Summer favorite:  strawberry ice cream.  It's too easy (and delicious) not to make.


Friday, July 12, 2013

~ Chow Ciao! ~ Olive Oil 101

With Fabio Viviani...


Besides getting a kick out of watching Julia Child in the kitchen...I find Fabio entertaining as well. 

Chow Ciao! 

~ Simple Steak: Dinner ~

After the steak is cooked (searing both sides to seal in the juices) Sauté the mushrooms with the steak for an awesome flavor.  This entire meal took about 40 min. from start to finish.  (including washing, chopping, cooking...)
Serve with veggies on the side and fruit for dessert.

We seem to be eating a lot of green beans these days...
I steam them for about 3 minutes and then toss them in a bit a olive oil and dash of kosher salt.  My children love them!
Rainiers cherries have a golden/pink color.  Very sweet.  Little Lamb thought these might not yet be ripe.  My children are familiar with the dark red Bing cherries, which we grow...we will have some tomorrow night!  I love all the summer fruit!!!

Rainiers Cherries

Thursday, July 11, 2013

~ Tools of the Trade ~

It pays to have some good *tools of the trade* at hand.  I try not to keep a lot of gadgety type things in my kitchen drawers.  I do keep some useful tools that make food preparation easy & efficient.

Also, since I don't like to hand wash, a tool should be dishwasher friendly.

Let me introduce one of my top ten favorites:


It makes chopping onions, garlic...you name it, QUICK and easy.  No time for tears.

I just rinse it off and place it in the dishwasher (top shelf) when I'm done.

Here is a short demo ~ Easy as 1, 2, 3: 
1.  Peel off outer skin of onion.  Discard skin (or use for compost).
2.  Slice onion in quarter (or half, depending on size of onion).
3.  Place under chopper...and push down on top handle. 
Various sizes of chopped onions depending on how many "chops" you give it.  Several make larger sizes, and about 12 - 15 "chops" make finer pieces.  I love this tool.

Another helpful tool(s):


These are very patriotic colors.  Actually, RED is for meats, WHITE is for fish and BLUE is for breads.  They, too, are dish-washer safe.

The right tools can make cooking & baking fun (& quick)!  I'll have to share my all time favorite way to bake salmon...you can find my recipe for California Ranch Rice, here.

Summer fruit...eat it while it's in season!!!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

~ Red, White & Blueberries ~

Fourth of July Fare
This trifle bowl has an ice reservoir that keeps desserts, salads, etc, cool.


Strawberries & Champagne...Champagne & Blueberries...


linking up to Catholic Cuisine for more 4th Festive Foods...

~ Leftovers ~ Summer Sandwich

Using last nights grilled chicken breast (seasoned only with kosher salt & pepper); sautéed slices zucchini squash, mushrooms, green onions.  Toss in sliced (cooked) chicken breast; set aside.

Whip together eggs, milk, salt & pepper, cook in skillet.  Mix in chicken & vegetables.
Grilled chicken, sautéed zucchini, mushrooms...

I splashed on some chili sauce...because I like spicy foods!  My children placed cheese on top of their "sandwich".  Fresh chilled watermelon on the side.  Voila - Summer Sandwich! 

Great for Breakfast or Lunch.  I used leftover chicken from last nights dinner, and buns from leftover BBQ.  It was actually too much bread for me, next time I will toast a slice and have as an open-faced sandwich, or omit the bread altogether.

Monday, July 1, 2013

~ Simple Summer Meals ~ Dinner

Taking advantage of all the fresh fruit this summer...
Steak with sautéed mushrooms, green beans, baked yams; and for dessert:  cherries & grapes.

The steak (protein) is measured by using the size of my palm...eating as much veggies (green beans) as I want.