Showing posts with label Summer Recipes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Summer Recipes. Show all posts

Monday, July 28, 2008

More Summer Recipes

We were away for 10 days on vacation. B, D and I flew to Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon and then to Phoenix, Arizona to visit with my niece M, her husband M and their son M. I have lots of stories from our trip but first I thought I would share a few amazing-looking recipes that I found during our travels. The first one was in the July issue of the Southwest Airlines Magazine. I was reading it on our flight out to Las Vegas. I tore it out of the magazine on our trip home. The recipe is for a mocktail called Aqua Frutta created by Marissa Barnes. Marissa is a bartender at Vivo Trattoria in Hartford, Connecticut. This sounds like a wonderful drink to make for a summer barbecue. I can't wait to try this recipe!

Strawberry Aqua Frutta
by Marissa Barnes

2-3 slices each of lemon and lime
9 small strawberries, sliced
Small handful of blueberries
3 ounces lemon juice
5 ounces water
1 ounce simple syrup (recipe below)
Dash vanilla extract
Sprig of mint

Puree seven of the strawberries in a blender until smooth, adding water if necessary. Put the lemon and lime slices, remaining strawberries, and blueberries in a pilsner glass filled 3/4 with ice, then use a straw to distribute the fruit throughout. In an ice-filled cocktail shaker, combine 1/4 cup of the strawberry puree, lemon juice, water, simple syrup, and vanilla extract. Shake well and strain into glass. Garnish with mint sprig. Makes one Aqua Frutta.

Simple Syrup

1 part sugar
1 part water

Combine sugar and water in a saucepan. Bring to a simmer, stir until dissolved, then cool.

This next recipe is from a Woman's Day magazine that I brought with my on our trip. The picture of this parfait is on the cover of the August 1 issue. It looks so summery and delicious that I couldn't resist it.

Mixed Berry Parfaits
Serves 5

1 box (3 oz) wild strawberry Jello
1 cup each fresh strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries
2 cups prepared vanilla pudding

1. You'll need five 10-oz glass or plastic glasses
2. Prepare Jello in a 2-cup glass measure as box directs. Refrigerate, occasionally stirring gently (try not to create bubbles.) 30 minutes or until consistency of egg whites.
3. Meanwhile, stem and hull 1/2 cup strawberries, cut in small pieces. Combine with 1/2 cup each blueberries and raspberries. Divide fruit mixture among glasses.
4. Add Jello and gently stir with a skewer to incorporate berries so some are suspended in gelatin (don't overstir). Refrigerate 3 hours or until set.
5. Spoon pudding on gelatin. Stem, hull and slice remaining strawberries and mix in a bowl with remaining blueberries and raspberries; spoon over pudding.

Planning Tip: Can be made through Step 4 up to 2 days in advance.

Doesn't this sound yummy?!

The Creative Cook

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Refreshing Summer Drinks - Non Alchoholic

I know that I've talked about iced tea and lemonade before but there are so many delicious and refreshing summer drinks that I am compelled to share a few more with you. I also found a great list of summer drinks at Real Simple's website for even more variety. I have the ingredients for these drinks in my freezer right now. I would be making them, too but we are leaving for vacation tomorrow. I will definitely be making them when I get back. Don't give your kids soda and juice boxes all summer, try one or two of these recipes instead.


Place 1 12-oz. can frozen pineapple juice concentrate (thawed) in a large pitcher; pour in 5 cups seltzer and 5 cups ginger ale. Stir vigorously until well blended. Stir in 4 cups cranberry juice and 2 cups orange juice; mix well. Scrub 1 lemon and 2 limes, then thinly slice. Just before serving, add sliced lemon and limes to pitcher and pour punch over ice. Serves 8.

Prep: 5 min. Serves: 8

2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries
2 6 oz cans frozen lemonade concentrate, thawed
1 lemon, sliced (optional)

Pour 2 cups cold water into a blender and add half of the raspberries. Blend until smooth, then pour puree through a fine-mesh strainer into a large pitcher (discard seeds). Add 4 more cups cold water, remaining raspberries and lemonade concentrate to raspberry puree. Mix well and pour over ice. Garnish with lemon slices, if desired.

** Swap berries – use blueberries or strawberries instead of raspberries


3/4 c Freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 c Freshly squeezed lime juice
5 cups ice water
1 cup Superfine sugar or 1-1/2 cups sugar
Lemon and lime slices for garnish

1. Combine juices and sugar in pitcher and stir until all sugar is dissolved.
2. When ready to serve fill tall glasses with ice.
3. Pour about 1/4 cup juice mixture in each glass and add beverage of choice to taste.
4. Stir to blend and add garnishes.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings

NOTE: SIMPLE SYRUP - Sugar needs no dissolving time when you add this ready-made sweetener to drinks. Refrigerated in a tightly closed jar, it keeps indefinitely.

3 cups water
4 cups granulated sugar

1. Bring water to boil in a large saucepan. Reduce heat to medium, add sugar and stir until completely dissolved.
2. Reduce heat to low and simmer 5 minutes until mixture has a light syrup consistency.
3. Cool, pour into jars, cover and refrigerate.

Makes 3-1⁄4 cups

From Woman's Day Magazine

I had a hard time finding frozen pineapple concentrate, so I bought pineapple juice instead. I will substitute for the frozen concentrate unless I find some in a grocery store soon.

The Creative Cook

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Fruity Chicken Salad

I have been really lazy recently regarding cooking and most other things. I usually get like this during the summer months. D and I go to the pool all the time and the rest of life just kind of falls apart. I did manage to actually make a meal the other day. I was inspired to make a really great salad -- not that it has been very hot in Maryland recently. In fact, we have been going to the pool later in the day and I've been bringing my sweat jacket to put on when the sun goes down. This is a salad recipe I found in the August 1 issue of All You magazine. It is called Fruity Chicken Salad. B and I ate it over a bed of romaine lettuce. We both enjoyed it. I took another bad picture without my flash on!

Fruity Chicken Salad

Prep: 10 min.
Cook: 15 min. Serves: 8

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 6 oz each)
salt and pepper
1 13.5 oz. can unsweetened coconut milk
1-1/2 cups light mayonnaise
1/2 cup sour cream
2 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
2 Tbsp. sweet pickle relish
2 celery ribs, chopped
1 10-oz. can crushed pineapple, drained
1 11-oz. can mandarin oranges, drained
1/2 cup dry-roasted peanuts, chopped (optional)
1/2 cup packed shredded coconut, toasted

(1) Place chicken in skillet and season with salt and pepper. Pour in coconut milk and bring to a boil over high heat. (Add water, if necessary, to cover chicken.) Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until chicken is opaque and firm, 15 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate and let cool. Discard coconut milk. When cool enough to handle, shred chicken into small pieces using your fingers.

(2) Blend mayonnaise with sour cream in a medium bowl. Stir in lime juice, relish and celery. Add chicken, pineapple, oranges and peanuts. Season with salt and pepper. Gently fold to blend and coat ingredients. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Sprinkle with coconut just before serving.

This is a nice easy meal to make as a main dish or a side dish for a cookout.

The Creative Cook