If you ask my opinion, summer is fantastic! I love the heat and playing outside and going to the pool. Last year, our weather was cool pretty much from June through September. We couldn't do all of the things that you normally associate with sunny days off from school. This year, we have sunny skies and warm to hot temperatures. The boys and I are having a blast!
The down side to summer is that it's a little more challenging for me to come up with a wide range of dinners. First, you don't really want to heat up your kitchen, and second, we stay outside a lot longer so I don't have as much time to throw something together.
What's a summer-lovin' gal to do? Dress up rice and beans, of course. What do I mean? How about brown rice and garbanzo beans tossed with fresh pesto made with basil from the garden. (I have a great recipe in Welcoming Kitchen coming out this spring.) Add in some artichoke hearts and fresh, gorgeous tomatoes and you have a filling, nutritious dinner that can be made on the stove top in about 45 minutes.
Another option to try is to saute farm-fresh corn in a little olive oil and garlic, toss in drained, but not rinsed black beans and combine with brown rice. Top with chopped fresh tomatoes (how can you not put them on everything?) and some avocado. If you want your rice and beans to have more zing, you can add some chopped fresh jalapeno in with your corn.
These are just some ideas to get you started. Really, you can add any produce that looks great at the farmer's market and fresh herbs you have in your window box and have a great dish with very little effort.
I shared this recipe with Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays.
Find more tasty recipes in Welcoming Kitchen: 200 Delicious Allergen and Gluten-free Vegan Recipes.