Summer Lovin’

I love summer!  I am a salt water-splashin, sunscreen-wearing, sand between the toes kinda gal. As I write this guest blog, I am kicked back in a little beach house in Indian Rocks, Florida. Indian Rocks is between Clearwater and St. Petersburg, but small and quaint. It does not have the tourist vibe of surrounding towns.  The best part is the sunsets!  My children and I take our chairs out and watch the sun go down every evening. Pure Bliss!

Beach sunsets are the best!

Beach sunsets are the best!

Stormy morning offshore results in a gorgeous double rainbow!

Stormy morning offshore results in a gorgeous double rainbow!

Before we left, I was in a cooking frenzy.  For a change, we were all home, so of course, we had dinner together.  My Lazy 8 Stock Farm CSA was again stocked with greens, including green onions, green tomatoes, basil, and bok choy.  Pesto is one of my favorite basil recipes (at least until the tomatoes ripen) so I froze some Pesto Bombs.  They are basically just your favorite pesto frozen in old-fashioned ice cube trays. When you need pesto, just thaw one or two.  I have been known to throw them into marinara source when I am in a hurry (hence the term “bomb”).  The bok choy screamed for a stir fry, so I created a Chicken and Bok Choy stir fry (an original recipe).  As a Southern girl, I LOVE Fried Green Tomatoes, so I tried to “health-ify” them while still frying (an oxymoron I am certain).  Finally, I want to share my guilty pleasure – Chocolate Brownie Bowl. I would like to say I share it with one of the kids. But that would just be a lie!

Pesto (Bombs)

adapted from Gimme Some Oven
INGREDIENTS

1/2 cup pine nuts
3-4 cloves garlic (I think the more, the merrier!)
3 cups fresh basil leaves, packed
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste (or about 1/2 tsp. of each)

DIRECTIONS:

In a food processor or blender, blend together basil, nuts, garlic, and cheese. Pour in oil slowly while still mixing, and then add in salt and pepper. Scrape down the sides and pulse once more to make sure it’s well-blended.  Pour into ice cube trays and drizzle a little olive oil on top.  Freeze and store in airtight container.

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Chicken and Bok Choy Stir Fry

1 pound organic chicken breasts or thighs
1 bunch green onions
1 bunch green onions
1 head organic bok choy
1 organic yellow bell pepper
2 carrots
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce (or substitute)
¼ cup coconut sugar
4 dashes Tabasco sauce
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon oyster sauce

Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces. Cut up onions, bell pepper (strips) and carrots (bited-sized pieces). Cut up bok choy, separating while stems and green leaves. Mix soy sauce, vinegar, Tabasco, sugar and oyster sauce. Set aside. Heat 1 tablespoon sesame oil in wok and cook chicken until no longer pink. Remove from heat and add to sauce. Add remaining sesame oil to pan and add white portions of bok choy and cook for 1 minute. Add carrot and cook for another minute. Add bell pepper and cook for 30 seconds more. Add green parts of bok choy and green onion and cook for approximately 2 minutes. Return chicken with sauce to the pan and cook until vegetables are desired doneness. Serve with steamed basmati or jasmine rice.

Fried Green Tomatoes

Adapted from MyRecipes.com

Ingredients
1 large organic, pastured egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup organic 2% milk
2 cups organic, stone-ground cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3-4 medium-size green tomatoes, cut into slices
coconut oil
Preparation
Combine egg and milk; set aside.  Combine cornmeal, 1 teaspoon salt, and pepper in a shallow bowl or pan. Dip slices in egg mixture, and dredge in cornmeal mixture.  Melt coconut oil to a depth of 1/4 inch in a large, heavy skillet, being careful not to overheat the oil. Drop tomatoes, in batches, into hot oil, and cook 2 minutes on each side or until golden. Drain on paper towels or a rack. Sprinkle hot tomatoes with salt.

Chocolate Brownie Bowl

Adapted from Delighted Momma

1/2 tablespoon organic butter or coconut oil
3 tablespoons of almond meal
2 tablespoons of cocoa powder
2 tbs of local honey
1 tsp of vanilla extract
1 tablespoon almond butter
1 organic, pastured egg

Directions:
Melt oil in microwave in a microwave-safe bowl, preferable with steep sides.  Add wet ingredients and mix well.  Add dry ingredients until smooth. Microwave for 1 minute.  Test for doneness and if needed, microwave another 30 seconds.  Sit down in your most comfortable chair with a spoon and eat before anyone else notices you have chocolate!
Thanks for letting me guest blog!  Hope you find something that makes your belly smile!

Mary Margaret

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