This week’s Local Box is like a highlight reel of some of my seasonal favorites. I could not be more excited about the delicious bounty! While my box will mostly be dismantled and consumed bit by yummy bit, there are some fabulous foundation ingredients for solid summer meals. This week’s box is super snack-able with peaches, pears, and cherry tomatoes, but the makings of some amazing and nutritious meals can’t be ignored either.
As we move into the deepest heat of the Texas summer, I have to admit that I’m reluctant to put in any more time than necessary over that hot stove. And to that end, I’ve selected recipes for this week’s meal plan that keep me away from the heat as much as possible! At their most involved, these dishes require the use of an oven whose hot blast upon opening will undoubtedly remind us of cars in Texas parking lots and why we don’t miss shopping at the grocery store in the summer…
Meal one: to start the week (and each day) off right, I’m so stoked to whip up a peach breakfast bake. I love this recipe because all the leg work can be done the night before, and you can just pop it into the oven as soon as you get up. By the time you’re ready, so is breakfast! And – feel free to shake it up by using those scrumptious local pears instead of peaches!
Meal two: enjoy the exotic elegance of eggplant as the base for this fabulous roasted bruschetta. I adjusted this recipe to include some of the peppers from the Local Box, which added a splash of color to an already rich and lovely plate. I also substituted the basil for the mint that the recipe called for, to give the dish an earthier flavor. The eggplant bruschetta paired excellently with a simple cherry tomato salad that utilized the rest of the fragrant basil.
Meal three: my mother is the queen of recipe adaptations, and she has taken this little bean salad number and made it incredibly awesome by using fresh peas in lieu of canned beans, and olive oil instead of canola oil. To make this substitution yourself, simply boil the fresh cream peas for half an hour, drain them, and allow to cool. Proceed with the recipe as written. This dish is also a great place to use chopped cucumbers, carrots, tomatoes, beets, or even a little feta… the possibilities are endless! And it makes a great next-day snack once the flavors have married, too.
Meal four: while I’ve only recently warmed up to squash (it’s a been well guarded secret to this point), it was this recipe for charbroiled butternut squash that won me over. It’s easy to make and it turns out every time, making this side dish a fabulous pairing for almost any entree you can put together. I love it with this crock pot roasted chicken in particular! With a mixed lettuce salad on the side to bring it all to a leafy cool, this meal is complete!
We’re nearing the end of another brutal summer, and these tasty meals will help draw the season to a close in a most delicious fashion! Tell us what you’re cooking in the comments.