Thursday, April 25, 2013

{summer recipes}


With summer right on the horizon (hopefully!) I have been seeking good spring/summer recipes.  I'm one of those weird people that crave yummy salads year round.  I could eat a salad for breakfast,lunch,and dinner. It's redic...and being married to a meat-loving cattle buyer, doesn't make life easy for a salad lover like me.  But these recipes work great for quick and easy lunches, and they keep great in the fridge (and keep getting better as the they marinade longer...).  They are a little different than your normal "lettuce" salad, although I think they would be great with a side of greens. You could serve either of these with Grilled Chicken or Steak too which would be great if you need some extra protein


Here are a few of my recent favorites that were too yummy not to share::


Recipe from Hanging with the Hewitts blog::

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano, or 1 teaspoon dried
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 4 cups peeled and diced cucumbers
  • 1 14-ounce can black-eyed peas, rinsed
  • 2/3 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup slivered red onion (I only use about an 1/8 of onion...I found 1/4 to be too much!)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped black olives
  • ( I used fresh avocado instead of olives)


.....................................................................................................

Orzo Salad with Feta, Mint and Green Onions (serves 8-10)
1 pound orzo
3 red bell peppers, cut into 1/2 inch dice
3 yellow bell peppers, cut into 1/2 inch dice (I use orange peppers as well...more color!)
4 garlic cloves, minced. (I use a tablespoon of minced garlic...this stuff makes my hectic life a tad easier. It's the small things.)
1/2 cup olive oil (divided)
Salt and freshly ground pepper
5 green onions, minced
12 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
1/2 cup (lightly packed) fresh mint leaves, chopped
1/3 cup pine nuts, lightly toasted
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice


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Lastly- since giving up my diet soda addiction last summer, I have been drinking so much more iced tea! This recipe is great if you need something a little sweeter.  I brew a big pitcher of passion fruit tea (love drinking this plain too!) and keep a jug of lemonade and a little bit of simple syrup on hand.  I know it's not "sugar free" but it's so refreshing on a warm day.  And dare I say, better and cheaper than the actual starbucks version!  I use my re-useable starbucks cup too, which makes it more convenient and green! 





Copycat Recipe: Starbucks Iced Passion Tea Lemonade
 
  • Lemonade
  • Tazo Iced Passion Tea
  • 1 Cup Sugar (for simple syrup)
Instructions
  1. Brew 1 quart of water in a Dutch Oven over high heat until boiling. Add one bag of Iced Passion Tea and remove from heat.
  2. Let brew for about 5 minutes. Remove tea bag and let the tea cool.
  3. Add 1⅓ cup of lemonade
  4. Add ⅓ cup simple syrup* (use about half of this to reduce sugar...)
  5. Serve over ice. At Starbucks they shake the heck out of it in a shaker. You can do the same if you have a plastic Starbucks reusable cup. Just pull the straw out and put your finger over the hole
  6. To make the simple syrup: Add one cup of sugar to one cup of water in a saucepan over medium high heat. Stir until all the sugar dissolves. Reduce heat and let simmer about 10 minutes. Add to jar and let cool.







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