One of the best aspects of summer is that you can nix the meats and live off the land - literally. This is a great time to take that long promised stab at vegetarianism, thanks to all the harvests right now. It's time to discover all these hot weather veggies and the dishes that go with them.
Squash is always popular and is in full harvest right now. Many home farmers have an abundance of them, thanks to their hardiness and ability to thrive. They are versatile from their delicate flowers to the mature vegetable. Squash flowers, those fragile yet delicious blooms, are best made into a kind of fritter. This Provencale and Piedmontese recipe is easy,The flowers do have to be picked early morning before they close for the day. They're then washed and patted dry , ready for battering. The batter is a simple mix of one cup each of flour and water. One egg and one tablespoon oil are also added for body. The flowers can be fried in margarine,oil, or the preferred French way, butter until crisp. Mature squash is another great versatile veggie.It can be turned into a green version of spaghetti, thanks to a neat little gadget called Veggetti. This hourglass shaped spiralizer turns any squash into a tasty pile of noodles. They can be made with sauce but a better and healthier way is sauteing them in olive oil, tempered with margarine and minced garlic. The spiralizer can also be used to make a tasty cucumber slaw too. Serve with an apple cider based vinaigrette for a nice cool salad.
Of course it's the season of the tomatoes. These bright red gems are the stars of any summer harvest and rightly so. They can be made into any type of dish., from starters to even dessert (technically they classified as fruit). Try them as bruschetta, piled on top of toasted crunchy rounds of Italian bread or as a flavorful salsa. The last can also highlight other summer stars green peppers and onions. This is the time to make homemade sauces for those fall and winter pasta dinners. Fresh ones are great in a pasta crudo where they 're mixed raw with just cooked spaghetti or angel hair pasta. One of the best way to have them is in a sandwich.Toast your favorite bread, slather on mayo and them layer on the tomato slices Tomaotes can even be turned into a sorbet for an unusual but flavor packed dessert..Another use for them along with eggplants and onions are the French classic ratatouille.Novice home chefs may be put off by the name's fanciness but it's really easy to make.It's basically sauteing sliced the veggies in a garlic and oregano spiced olive oil.They're then cooked down until tender. It's usually served with crusty baguette slices to sop up the juices however it can also be served with rice too. Green and red peppers can be added along with zucchini to mix it up a bit.
Anyone can go vegan on a summer diet thanks to all these abundant harvests. Take advantage of them of them and cook healthy. It's a great boost to your health and to your taste buds!