It’s finally here. With the summer solstice officially declaring the sun season open, my fridge has have been telling us the self same for a good month or so. Our diet has switched from hearty winter stews and roasts, to featherlight meals full of crisp fresh vegetables, ready to eat snackables and the occasional cool treat.
Breakfast & Brunch
Guiltless Breakfast Cake
Fat free, sugar free, gluten free (depending on the ingredients you use
obviously…). Quick, healthy, easy and fully customisable cake for
breakfast perfect with an iced coffee. You’re not going to believe me…
30-second Sunshine Smoothies
Bursting with fresh zingy citrus, these are light, nutritious and
scrumptious. Substitute your favourite fruits or whatever you have on
Pumpkin Pie Smoothies
When I saw that you can make a smoothie out of pumpkin puree (canned or homemade) I had to get out my
smoothie maker and have a try. I made a couple of amendments to it;
adding Oats to it to make it into more of a breakfast item, adding
more Cinnamon and Nutmeg and substitute ice cubes, as I didn’t have any,
for frozen Mango Chunks.
There is something luscious about the crisp exterior, the soft internal
structure then the tidbits of creamed Sweetcorn that make my mouthwater.
Lunch & Dinner
Especially on lazy weekends, lunch and dinner become hazily interchangeable. Often taken in the sunshine, we decamp to the backyard or our favorite parks armed with a picnic blanket, glass of something crisp wet and cool, and a selection of our favourite cold and hot treats. Our meals usually feature a touch of everything in the fridge, improvised Ploughman’s Platters; cheese, pickles, beetroot, salad leaves, dips, cold meat, boiled eggs, vegetable crudite, a couple of slices of quiche and pie, and the odd scotch egg.
This is a quick recipe, great for slimmers, summer picnics, gluten-free
bods and, well, me. We love to slice it up and to take it to work for
lunch and picnics – much to the envy of my colleagues eating their dry shop-made ham
Bacon and Egg Pie
One of my childhood loves is Bacon and Egg pie. Oh it is so good. All
the stuff that is bad for you: puff pastry, bacon, eggs and tomatoes.
Traditionally, I’m told, this is made for farmers to be eaten cold at
the back of the farm – it’s full of energy giving fats and a slice of a
well-cooked pie can be easily held in one hand (much like the crust on
Creamy Pumpkin, Chestnut & Bason Pasta
Perfect for an hot or cold, this dish is quick and light, but refreshing and filling – and not too bad on the calorie front.
When we’re really organised we crank out the BBQ and armed with a few beers we get all prehistoric with good meat covered in all sorts of glazes, jacket potatoes buried in the coals, coleslaw and a couple of our favourite sides. Speaking of which, the next time you roll out the BBQ – chuck on a couple of halved and seeded capsicums (peppers) – the smoke and heat brings out a wonderful sweetness, and as you sit down to eat your BBQ feast, pop on a couple of honey glazed, halved peaches to cook. They are heavenly served with a scoop of two of ice cream…
Stuffed Butternut Squash
The soft sweetness of the pumpkin goes really well with the salty bacon, tomatoes and plum sauce, followed by the crisp cheese & breadcrumbs. Most of the ingredients can be swapped out for what you have on hand or tastes you prefer.
Mediterranean Vegetable Bake
Draped in slices of melted halloumi, seasoned with your favourite herbs, and packed full of as many vegetables as you can slip in, it’s full of everything that’s good.
|Undressed Vege bake, with a corner serving or two of Chicken Breast|
Desserts & Afters
Absolutely Guilt Free Ice-Cream
It is simplicity within itself. As with most of my recipes and cooking, it’s
fully customisable – I’d add bashed fruit (strawberry, kiwifruit,
banana, orange, lemon, cherries…) to add a few vitamins, flavourings
(I personally love peppermint essence, vanilla, coffee melted in a touch
of hot water…) or anything you have in your cupboards (coconut, nuts –
though watch your teeth, raisins, smooth peanut butter…) The results
are only as limited as your imagination.
Homemade cocktails can be really easy, and really fun to make – Mojitos
don’t even need a cocktail Shaker. Another bonus is you can personalise
them to how you like drinking them; more Lime, less Mint, a touch more
Sugar. Summer in a glass…
What are your favourite Summer recipes?