basil, bell peppers, recipe ideas, recipes, summer squash, tomatoes

you say tomato…i say YUM!


Hi everyone out there in cyberspace (wow – remember when that term was used regularly?!). I hope you’re having a fabulous summer and keeping as cool as you can. We’re still sporting our multi-bandanna stylee and drinking lots and lots of water to keep hydrated. Life is good – and it would be even better if it would only rain! Yesterday I drove from Chattanooga back to Raleigh. The rain followed me the whole way…well, not the whole way – it followed me until about Durham and then it just stopped. We managed to get a few sprinkles but we didn’t get much. The bright side though was that it was our friend Josh’s 4th birthday yesterday and he wanted fireworks to celebrate. The rain would have put a damper on a very cute and funny little boy’s birthday – so I guess we can’t be too upset about its absence ;).

So, I realized I haven’t posted many recipes lately (or posted much all summer actually)…so I’m going to use the rest of this blog for exactly that. Right now we have tomatoes, summer squash, onions, potatoes, purple peppers, cucumbers, basil, and a few melons and eggplant (more of those to come soon). As usual, please feel free to post your own recipes to the comment box below or e-mail them to me at parker.patricia@gmail.com. We would love it if you shared some of your recipes with us!

Okay – moving on…

Here’s a basic summer spaghetti recipe. Our CSA members are receiving a TON of tomatoes this week – and even though they’re amazing all by themselves, I figured some of you might want a little more variety in your lives – especially as you continue to get more and more of them. I found this recipe on a blog called Closet Cooking. You can access the link to the recipe here. It’s easy and tasty – you can’t go wrong. Of course, vary according to taste and what you happen to have in your kitchen/garden.

Ingredients:
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 clove garlic (chopped)
1 serving pasta (cooked)
2 roma tomatoes (chopped)
1 tablespoon basil (chopped)
1 tablespoon parsley (chopped)
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Heat the oil in a pan.
2. Saute the garlic until fragrant, about 30-60 seconds.
3. Turn off the heat.
4. Add the pasta, tomatoes, basil, parsley, salt and pepper and toss to mix.

This one came from Southern Living (here). You can get peaches at the Western Wake Farmer’s Market from Clayton Orchard. This is another simple one – but feels and looks like it came from a fancy schmancy gormet restaurant.

 Ingredients:

  • 1/3  cup  white balsamic vinegar
  • 1  garlic clove, minced
  • 2  tablespoons  brown sugar
  • 1/4  teaspoon  freshly ground pepper
  • 1/8  teaspoon  salt
  • 2  tablespoons  olive oil
  • 1  large peach, chopped
  • 1 1/2  tablespoons  chopped fresh basil

Preparation:

1. Whisk together first 5 ingredients until sugar is dissolved. Whisk in olive oil. Stir in chopped peach and basil. Serve immediately.

This one calls for tomatoes and squash – it’s a tomato and squash gratin. You can access the original link here.

Ingredients:

5-6 summer squash, sliced thin lengthwise
3-4 large heirloom or large, red tomatoes, sliced thin
1/3-1/2 cup olive oil
15-20 whole basil leaves
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Breadcrumbs
Salt & pepper to taste

Preparation:
Preheat oven to 400 F.

Place one layer of sliced squash in the bottom of a 9 x 13 inch baking dish. Top with a layer of sliced tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper and a few basil leaves. Generously drizzle olive oil over all and sprinkle a little Parmesan cheese on top. Repeat in the same order until you run out of vegetables. Top layer should be tomatoes.

Add a final toss of Parmesan and a generous coating of breadcrumbs and more olive oil. Bake until everything is soft, bubbly and brown on top (about 30-40 minutes) Serve as a side dish with whatever you’re grilling or with a bean salad or pasta dish for a complete meal.
 This one’s called “Mom’s Summer Squash” and it’s from Simply Recipes. You can access the original posting here.

 Ingredients:
2 lbs squash and/or zucchini, sliced
1 green bell pepper, seeds removed, sliced
2 smallish tomatoes or one large tomato, peeled and cut into wedges
1/2 yellow onion, peeled and sliced
1 clove of garlic, chopped
Olive oil
5 or 6 slices of cheese – jack or cheddar
Basil, either dry or chopped fresh
Salt and pepper

Preparation:  

1 Put onion, garlic, squash, bell pepper into a large saucepan with a couple of tablespoons of olive oil. Put on high heat and brown the vegetables slightly to develop flavor. As you are browning, sprinkle either dried basil or chopped fresh basil on the vegetables. When vegetables are slightly browned, remove from heat, add the slices of cheese, and cover the pan.

2 In a separate stick-free fry pan, put the tomatoes and cook at medium hi heat for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. You want to let the juice from the tomatoes evaporate some. After 5 minutes, add the tomatoes to the rest of the vegetables and stir. Salt and pepper to taste.
Serves 4.

This one’s a variation on the classic BLT – it’s a BTB (bacon, tomato and basil). This recipe is from Southern Living and you can access the original posting here

Ingredients

  • 9  slices ready-to-serve bacon, halved
  • 1/2  cup  shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1/3  cup  mayonnaise
  • 1  garlic clove, minced
  • 9  slices extra-thin white bread slices
  • 3  plum tomatoes, sliced
  • 12  fresh basil leaves

Preparation

1. Heat bacon according to package directions until crisp.
2. Stir together cheese, mayonnaise, and garlic. Spread mayonnaise mixture evenly onto 1 side of each bread slice. Layer 3 bread slices, mayonnaise sides up, with 3 bacon slices each. Top bacon evenly with 1 bread slice, tomato slices, and basil. Top each with remaining bread slices, mayonnaise sides down. Cut each sandwich into quarters.

You can also access recipes for tomato pie (amazing!), tomato grits, and my mom’s cucumber salad on this blog (an old posting) here. a;lsdkfj

Alrighty – hope y’all try out some or all of these recipes and enjoy ’em.

As usual, thanks for stopping by!

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