Wow! 80+ degrees outside, 2 days in a row and it's not even August! Here are some great, simple recipes to keep you out of the kitchen and cooled down.
Dijon-marinated Root Vegetables
2-3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 2-3 inch sticks (about the size of a finger)
2 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into 2-3 inch sticks
1 medium onion (Walla Wallas are best), cut into wedges and separated
2-3 med potatoes, scrubbed, peeled and chopped into quarter-sized pieces
- Cover all vegetables with olive oil and spread into a single layer on 1-2 baking sheets. Roast at 350, turning once with a spatula, until tender, approximately 20-25 minutes. Transfer to bowl and cool to room temperature
1 ½ c of olive oil
½ c Dijon mustard or whole grain brown mustard
¼ c. honey
1 tsp minced garlic or garlic paste
Salt & pepper, to taste.
- Combine dressing ingredients in bowl or using blender to fully blend. Pour over root vegetables. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and store in refrigerator. Serve chilled.
Cold Noodle Salad with Beef or Shrimp
½ package whole wheat spaghetti or soba noodles, prepared and tossed with small amount of olive oil
1 lb shrimp, peeled, deveined, and cooked OR 1 lb of steak, marinated in olive oil & garlic, broiled & thinly sliced- chilled
Rice Wine Vinegar- 1 1/2 c
Sweet Chili sauce- ½ c
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
½ red onion, thinly sliced and finely minced
¼ c roughly chopped cilantro or basil
½ head iceberg lettuce, chopped
Tomato wedges, as desired
-Combine vinegar, sweet chili sauce, garlic and minced onion. Combine remaining ingredients (may need to make more dressing if using steak instead of shrimp, as it soaks up more dressing). Top with dressing and chill. Serve cold.
Homemade Ranch Dressing
A great way to get more veggies!
1 cup mayonnaise
2 cups plain Greek yogurt
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
½ tsp salt
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh chives
Blend all ingredients. Chill, serve as garnish for carrot and celery sticks, cucumber slices, and radishes, or as salad dressing (may want to thin with milk if using as dressing).
Grain Salad with Shrimp, Feta, and Pine Nuts
1 c. brown rice or pearled barley.
½ lb shrimp, peeled, deveined, cooked and roughly chopped
1 block of feta roughly chopped or one container of crumbled feta
Handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
½ c pine nuts, toasted
¼ c cilantro, roughly chopped
1-2 finely minced green onions
¼ c olive oil
-Prepare grains as directed on the box, rinsing well and adding 1-2 drops of olive oil to water, which will keep the grains fluffy. Once fully cooked, fluff with a fork and allow to cool to room temperature as you prep the other ingredients. Add all and combine well. Chill and serve cold.
Serve these dishes with one of the drinks below:
Sparkling Honey-Ginger Lemonade
1 c lemon juice
1/2 c honey
1/2 tsp ground ginger
6 c seltzer water, divided into 1 1/2 c, poured over cups full of ice
- Combine first three ingreients in saucepan, warm steadily until honey and lemon juice easily combine into syrup. Pour 1/4 c of syrup over each cup, stirring to mix. Serves 4, with some syrup leftover.
Sangria/Virgin Sangria Spritzer
1 jug of rose (pink wine) (or light fruit juice for virgin drinks)
1 liter of plain seltzer
1 orange, sliced into rounds
1 lemon, sliced into rounds
1 lime, sliced into rounds
1 c raspberries, fresh or frozen
1/4 c agave nectar
-Combine all ingredients in large pitcher, place in refrigerator to chill. Serve with ice. Makes a little more than a gallon.
Looking for a quick, easy way to increase your water intake this summer. Try adding lemons, limes, mint, or even cucumbers. They add flavor to "boring" water.. Also, if you are prepping carrots and celery sticks for easy lunch prep, store them in water in the refrigerator to keep them crisp. Drain off some of the water to drink. It will be quite refreshing!