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>3 great summer recipes: Pesto, Hummus & Fresh Salsa

Category : Healthy Eating

>Summer always brings opportunities to savor vegetables fresh from the garden and enjoy them with friends at a backyard gathering. Here are three of my favorite recipes that either use fresh farmers market ingredients (pesto, salsa) or are my favorite to bring to a party (hummus & salsa).

Let’s start with Pesto since it is packed with Omega 3’s:

  • 1 bunch Fresh Basil: Washed, Stems removed and Chopped coarsely.
  • 1/4 to 1/2c Olive Oil (Omega 3’s)
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/3c Walnuts (Omega 3’s) or pine nuts or raw peanuts
  • 1/2t Salt

Blend 1/4c olive oil, salt and garlic in blender. Slowly add chopped fresh basil. Blend coarsely, adding olive oil as needed to create a thick paste. Blend in nuts. Salt to taste and freeze any extra in small containers with little air gap.

Pesto is good on Barilla Plus Pasta (more Omega 3’s!), but have you ever made a salad by simply mixing pesto, fresh mozzarella balls and halved cherry tomatoes? Wow! It’s extraordinary and a real spotlight of a meal.

Hummus is a favorite food of mine and it is SO simple:

  • 1 can chick peas (AKA garbanzo beans) drained (liquid reserved)
  • 1 large clove garlic, crushed
  • 2 T sesame tahini
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 3+ t lemon juice
  • optional: chopped fresh parsley

Coarsely mash the chick peas with a fork or potato masher. Then mash in all the other ingredients, adding some of the reserved liquid to achieve a thick paste. Finished hummus is naturally a bit lumpy, so don’t worry about getting it perfectly smooth. Experiment and enjoy. Salt to taste.

And Finally, Fresh Salsa. Possibly the best blend of all that fresh goodness of the Farmer’s Market.

  • 4-6 tomatoes finely diced
  • 1 bunch cilantro, rinsed, stems removed and finely chopped.
  • 1-2 cloves garlic (careful, raw garlic can add serious heat!)
  • 1 jalepeno pepper, seeds and veins removed. Finely chopped
  • 1 bunch green peppers, thinly sliced or finely chopped
  • 1/2 to whole lemon juice (3+ tablespoons)
  • 1 T Olive Oil
  • 1 T vinegar (cider, wine or rice vinegar)
  • 1/2 t salt (salt to taste)

Mix ingredients together and allow to rest for at least 1/2 hour before serving.