Summer Roasted Corn & Edamame Salad with Old Bay Lemon Vinaigrette!

old bayA little tribute to my baby brother who was just home visiting and with all my private dinners this summer he’s been my go to guy for some different recipe ideas to match up with my menus. This is one he tossed out and told me to make it my own so here it is! Totally a summer salad, probably one of the best ever!! It has a touch of the Eastern Shore. If you’re a Maryland girl like me or live in the Mid Atlantic area you’ll know what I mean as soon as you as you check on the ingredients list.

Loaded with fresh summer veggies, corn, peppers, tomatoes, etc. This will be an easy go to side for your cook outs, picnics, and special events through the rest of summer and going into fall!!!

Ingredients:

  • 4 ears of corn-shucked
  • 1 bag of edamame- hulled/shelled
  • 3 cloves of fresh garlic-peeled and chopped finely
  • 10-15 cherry tomatoes- quartered
  • 3 small sweet peppers- chopped

Dressing:

  • 3/4 C Olive Oil
  • 1 Lemon juiced
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp Old Bay Seasoning
  • Fresh Ground Pepper

Directions: Pour all ingredients into a Mason jar and shake well!

Directions for the salad:

  1. Preheat grill- set medium to high heat
  2. In a baking pan, drizzle oil to keep veggies from sticking. Spread out edamame and chopped garlic. Salt and pepper well and place on the grill. Keep stirring to avoid burning, but you may like the char on your veggies for added taste! About 10 minutes
  3. Lay corn on the grill as well and allow corn to char or blacken in parts. Don’t let the whole cob burn just a little roasting. About 8-10 minutes. Make sure to turn on all sides.
  4. Once the corn is done, let it cool and remove corn from the cob. Easiest way is to stick the cob in a bowl and then run a knife down it to cut off the cob. It will catch in the bowl.
  5. Add garlic, edamame, tomatoes, peppers. Top with dressing and mix well. Serve warm or refrigerate to chill!

 

 

 

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Garden Tomatoes with Green Goddess Dressing

www.farmfoodieandfitness.comHere come the tomatoes finally! After the winter the Mid-Atlantic had we’ve had to wait a little longer for our gardens to catch up. But these perfect sweet things are popping up by the dozens and eagerly ripening. I seriously eat tomatoes like candy. I can just slice a couple of Beefsteaks, add a pinch of salt and pepper and that will be my lunch! Here is a little twist on some dressing that’s healthy, garden fresh, stocked with herbs, and perfect if you’re looking for a little different taste here and there. Use “Green Goddess” for dipping your veggies, marinade chicken or pork, or just top salads with this yummy goodness!

Salad

  • 1 bunch fresh basil
  • 2 red Beefsteak tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup Yellow Pear tomatoes
  • 1 cup Red Cherry tomatoes
  • 2 black or purple Krim tomatoes
  • 2 orange Golden Girl tomatoes

Grab every color of tomatoes you can. I just gave a few examples of names of the ones I grow in my garden. The more colors, shapes, and sizes the more beautiful this dish turns out! Slice, quarter, and even leave the little tomatoes whole, it makes no difference. Place them on a plate and smother with green goddess dressing.

 Green Goddess Dressing

  • 2 cups of plain Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup fresh chives
  • ½ cup fresh basil
  • ½ cup fresh parsley
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 1 clove fresh garlic
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Pinch of fresh ground pepper
  • Pinch of Cayenne pepper

Place garlic in blender and blend well. Add one cup yogurt, basil, chives, parsley, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and cayenne and blend. Add last cup of yogurt and blend again until smooth. Store remaining dressing in refrigerator up to a week.

 

 

 

Canning!! Do the Work Now Get the Payoff Later!

photo credit: www.eastofedenfarms.wordpresss.comIt’s one of my favorite past times! I love to spend a day in the kitchen canning fresh fruits and vegetables through out the summer. Fresh berries for making jam, pickling cucumbers, okra, even carrots, and of course we can’t forget the TOMATOES. It’s only the best thing all year to can!!! With a business that took off this summer, I barely had time to sleep let alone canning anything all summer. 😦 So there won’t be any fresh peach or strawberry jam this winter with my sprouted toast! 😉 My poor grandmother usually gets a lot of my goodies, when she finds out there is no jam this winter I think it may actually break her heart.

Now that it’s fall I am bound and determined to can as much as possible through out the next few months. I’m still getting some of the best tomatoes yet, but unfortunately not enough to make a batch from my own garden. So, I went to my trusty Organic farm and bought 30 pounds to www.farmfoodiefitness.commake homemade sauce and stewed tomatoes for those cold, bitter wintry days.I spent my whole Labor Day in the kitchen. So, now I’ll have plenty of mason jars full of fresh tomatoes for soups, stews, and even chili! Over 30 jars full!

So now that fall is in full swing I’m rushing around to figure out what else I can jar, can, preserve, bottle, and pickle. In the past weeks I made over 10 jars of fresh basil pesto, infused 5 bottles of pepper oil and 3 with vinegar. With the figs coming in so late, I’ve been able to make a couple jars of my “Figgy BBQ sauce.” (Recipe coming soon!) This weekend I plan to make fig infused balsamic vinegar and hopefully pickle some of these cute little cucumbers that have finally started to grow in my backyard garden.

Seems like a lot of work! Believe me it takes sometime, but there’s nothing better in the winter and early spring to have fresh tomatoes, pickles, and preserves. They’re also great for gifts and even better to barter with friends! I have friends already begging for a jar. They’ve even bribed me with free eyebrow waxes and free dinner parties just for one jar! So it could definitely work out in your favor! Let me know what fun things you’ve got brewing in the kitchen!

Happy Cooking & Canning!

www.farmfoodiefitness.com

When Life Gives You Tomatoes, Make Gazpacho!

photo credit: www.detoxdiva.comSummer never really got here on the East Coast this year, with mild 80 degree temps all of July and August it’s been feeling like a fabulous long fall. But with cooler temperatures, gardening was a little tough making tomato crops lagging way behind. Until these past weeks I’ve hardly had any all summer but with summer starting to peak her head out this week and bringing on the humidity, tomatoes seem to be abundant so what better to do with all those tomatoes but make Gazpacho!!!

One of the most desired soups ever invented. Cold soup is best for those sweltering hot summer days and even better for those warm fall afternoons. Perfect for using all those fresh tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers straight from the garden or farmers market. Add your other favorite ingredients or load up on different kinds of peppers to turn up the heat. Make large batches and eat it all week! DSC_6074

Makes 3-4 Servings

2 cups yellow tomatoes

2 cups red tomatoes

2 cups peeled and diced cucumbers

1 ½ cup red onion

1 cup orange bell pepper

1 teaspoon garlic minced

1 jalapeño seeded (or keep seeds to add heat)

1 tablespoon lemon juice

2 tablespoons tomato paste

2 tablespoons olive oil

¼ cup sherry vinegar

2 tablespoons fresh parsley

2 tablespoons fresh basil

1/2 cup scallions- chopped

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

¼ teaspoon fresh ground pepper

¼ teaspoon cayenne

1 avocado-sliced

Puree peppers, tomatoes, red onion, and jalapeño in a food processor. Add garlic, tomato paste, herbs, olive oil and blend well.  Transfer to bowl, and then add lemon juice and vinegar. Season with salt, pepper, and cayenne. Stir together. Cover and let chill for at least 3 hours or overnight to let flavors settle in. Pour into separate bowls. Garnish with scallions and avocado. Enjoy!!

Celebrate National Canning Day

Summer is finally here, well it seems like it should be some days! Lately my coastal-area seems to be still stuck in spring with lots of windy, rainy days. Not always good for gardening, but most times it means a later harvest, if we can hold off early frosts. Everyone loves summer for the farm-fresh produce from the farmers markets and the taste of a warm just-picked tomato from the vine, sweet corn on the cob, and juicy watermelon.

We all spend the winter daydreaming about all those yummy summer foods that are nowhere to be found. So, this year why not save some of those all time favorites and give yourself the opportunity to savor their tastes throughout the winter while also saving yourself some money too by canning!

Sunday, July 14th is National Canning Day! I love the summers just for canning all those fresh fruits and veggies, most my family and I will pick throughout the seasons as they change, as long as I can get to them before they eat them all, we’re stocked for the winter!! There’s nothing better than a cold winter day and using your canned tomatoes for homemade vegetable soup, chili, or your own pasta sauce. Or those cold Sunday morning days, when all you want is a small taste of summer you can go to the pantry and pull out a jar of peach marmalade or strawberry jam! (I always give some away too!) 🙂

Now’s the time to run out to those you-pick farms and local farmers markets to stock up on blueberries, blackberries, peaches, plums, tomatoes, okra, cucumbers, asparagus, green beans, peppers, onions, and carrots. The list is endless! Make sure to stock up on ball jars and lids to (they tend to sell out-even at Walmart) towards the end of July! I love
using the vintage ones because they are so pretty but hard to find sometimes! (Just make sure you sterilize them really well first!!)

Grow your own, pick your own, can your own! Know where you’re food comes from, how it’s processed, and have the freshest ingredients you can all year round. So throw a canning party this weekend, bring a friend over, grab the kids, or just hide in the kitchen alone. You’ll be so happy this winter you did! For lots of recipes visit www.canningacrossamerica.com

Celebrate big on Sunday! I know I will be canning peaches and blueberries to start! Happy Canning!! (My tomatoes from last year-still have 2 left!!)

farmfoodiefitness.com

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Tomatoes, Tomatoes, Tomatoes!

As summer begins to come to an end with the kids headed back to school, the big BBQ bashes are right around the corner for Labor day weekend, and the fresh summer produce will quickly turn to fall greens, root veggies, and loads of squash and pumpkins. In honor of my favorite vegetable, (technically a fruit) tomato season will be winding up here soon. Oh, how I”ll miss garden-fresh, sun-ripened tomatoes everyday. I literally can not get enough! As I’ve said before there is nothing better than picking a warm tomato straight from your own garden to be sliced for sandwiches and salads!

All winter long I will dream of these sweet and juicy treats. Grocery store tomatoes don’t even come close to the perfect rainbow of accessible yummies we can get all summer. Black Krims, Purple Smudge, Dr.Wyche’s Yellow, Japanese Black Trifele, Lemon, Mr. Stripey, San Marzano, Golden Peach, and Green Zebras have all made an appearance in my garden.

Tomatoes are loved so much in my area, a local farmers market has an annual tomato festival and we drive over an hour to taste an array of different Heirlooms every year. We stock up on all our favorites, trying news ones, and savoring every bit of the season. My 3 year-old daughter demands her own bag of Sungolds and Black Cherrys, inhaling them so she won’t have to share.But we decided to share a little taste of the festival with you…

As summer continues to fizzle out, if you haven’t gotten your heart’s desire in tomatoes now is the time or you’ll have to wait till next summer and believe me it’s a long winter! 🙂 So make your own sauce, can every last one, even sun dry your own for salads and dips for the winter, (Check out my post later this week how to sun dry your own tomatoes) just incase you get that hankering! Here’s to the end of summer and bellies full of tomatoes!

Canning! What To Do With All Those Tomatoes!

www.farmfoodieandfitness.comTomatoes, Tomatoes, Tomatoes! Oh, how we love our vine- ripened tomatoes. There isn’t a day that passes all summer and what I can still get in the fall, that I don’t eat a tomato. All winter long I count the days till the first, perfect one shows up in my garden. Nothing is better than a warm, juicy tomato picked right before dinner, one that has been basking in the sun’s rays all day long. Most times they only need salt and pepper. But I’ll take them anyway I can get them, in caprese salad, smothered over homemade pasta, popping them like candy for an afternoon snack, or even just biting into them like an apple right in the middle of the garden!

So, the best way to get your vine-ripened tomatoes in the winter is to can them. I try to can as many as I can during the summer. It takes a little bit of time, longer if you have small children distracting you but it’s still totally worth it! 🙂 Sometimes, I watch the weather for a stormy weekend day and plan a canning day for when I’m stuck inside. There is so many thing you can do with fresh tomatoes. Can them, make sauce or paste, or make your own salsa. I even make cute little labels and sell them at bazaars and shopping events or give them as presents at Christmas time.

Here’s my step-by-step on how to can your own tomatoes and stock up your pantry for the winter…

  1. Start with as many organic tomatoes as you can. Beefsteak, Better Boys, and Romas (for paste) are the best ones to use. Check your local farmers sometimes they’ll sell canning tomatoes by the bucket full for pretty cheap!
  2. Make sure to sterilize your jars, lids, and rings in a large pot of boiling water, use the highest temp or “sanitize” on your dishwasher.
  3. Fill your bath canner or large pot half full with water and bring it to a boil.
  4. Place a few tomatoes at a time into the boiling water. This is an easy way to remove the skins by putting them into the boiling water for 45 seconds. Then plunge tomatoes into a bowl of iced water for about a minute. Leaving the skins on will cause them to be tough and chewy in your sauce.
  5. Cut off the skins, any bruised or rotting spots.Then cut the tomatoes in quarters or smaller if you wish.
  6. Fill up your jars with whole or cut tomatoes to 1/4 inch from the top.
  7. Add 1 Tablespoon of organic lemon juice (this keeps the tomatoes from losing color and spoiling) and then fill to 1/2 inch with boiling water or organic tomato juice. (I think the tomato juice works better and helps keep the flavor.)
  8. Wipe off the rim of each jar to make sure they’ll get a clean seal. Put on the lids and the rings.
  9. Boil the jars for 45 minutes in a bath canner or large pot. Let the jars sit out to cool before storing them.

Hope you have a great time canning tomatoes this summer. I know you’ll be enjoying them all winter. Let me know how it goes. My last canning day gave me 32 jars of organic tomatoes! Good Luck and Happy Canning!

 

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