Yummy Summer Food to enjoy with family and friends

A food repeat, just in time for Memorial Day! I would love to know what you are cooking for the holiday. I meal prepped boneless chicken thighs yesterday, so I’ll probably have that with some sort of vegetable sides. Maybe I’ll make zucchini noodles with marinara sauce.

PS: If you are interested in trying it, I’ll post the video I more or less replicated to make my chicken (below.)Back when I originally posted this, I quoted what our friend Menagerie said:

We need a summer recipe post. I’m craving summer salads with chopped vegetables. Maybe fruit dishes as well. We get so many delicious fresh fruits and vegetables and I’m looking for new ides on how to fix them.

Maybe that could be one of your summer posts, maybe even combine it with stories. I don’t have lots of memories from my childhood, but I do remember cookouts, family reunions, a few church events, trips to my friend’s grandmother’s house for a big family lunch after church, then all the kids played outside for hours. Churning ice cream. Watermelons that my dad kept cold in his big walk in freezers at the farmers market. Selling peaches on a stall at the market when I was about ten or twelve. The excitement of the first days when the truck farmers would show up with their pickup beds full of corn, panel trucks loaded with all kinds of homegrown vegetables.

The farmers and their sons would often stay in their trucks until they sold all their produce, occasionally even their wives and a small child or two would stay too.

I guess summer will always take me back to the farmers market I grew up on.

Sorry, I got off on a trip back in time.

I have a lot of memories about food too – especially family gatherings.

  • Reunions at the farm, at my Aunt Flossie’s house and at our house one year too. Flossie’s baked beans, my mother’s potato salad, lots of corn on the cob (roasted or boiled), and fried chicken and ham.
  • Hamburger cookouts, with all the trimmings.
  • Trips to the state park to swim, cooking breakfast and lunch over a charcoal or wood fire.
  • Road trips with a picnic along the way, usually at one of the “Dodge Parks”.

  • Sunday dinner at the farm. Fried chicken, and whatever vegetables were ready in the garden. New peas and potatoes, cucumbers and onions sliced in vinegar, tomatoes, corn on the cob, green beans, pickled beets, cucumber pickles, homemade chili sauce.
  • Lovely summer desserts, usually involving fruit. Strawberry shortcake, angel food cake stuffed with strawberries and whipped cream, cherry pie, rhubarb pie, peach cobbler, apple crisp! My mother’s applesauce cake, made with home canned applesauce, raisins and nuts, and topped with her “penuche” (brown sugar) frosting.  And just plain fruit – watermelon and cantaloupe, all kinds of berries, cherries, peaches and plums.

Now I’m hungry.

What do you remember? What are your favorite summer recipes, especially those with the bounty of the season – lots of lovely veggies and fruit?

Here’s the recipe for boneless, skinless, chicken thighs that I made yesterday. The grilling glaze is a great idea, but does include ingredients that most people don’t have in their pantries. I do, so I prepared it like she does, but added a bit of ras el hanout. I also substituted garlic powder, because I was too lazy to grate fresh. My whole house smelled like Morocco!

Recipe for the grilling glaze:

1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp Pomegranate Molasses
1 Tbsp Za’atar
1/3 cup oil
2 garlic cloves, grated on a microplane zester

Put everything into a squeeze bottle with a clipped tip (to make sure sesame seeds can go through) and shake well (reshake before each use). Keeps in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. If making it in a bowl, mix everything thoroughly with a fork except for oil. Slowly drizzle in the oil while whisking. Whisk before each use.

Za’atar is a dry spice mix, usually including oregano, sumac, marjoram, thyme and sesame seeds and maybe hyssop. If you don’t have pomegranate molasses, try a bit of honey instead.

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