It’s week three of our season-long garden party, Summer Fest 2011, where we welcome food and garden bloggers to feature garden-to-table recipes and tips. We’ll help you to enjoy all that this season has to offer. So far, we’ve delved into eggplants and peaches. This week we’re getting creative with cucumbers.
Water-rich and crunchy cukes are the perfect cool-down veggie for hot days. We’ve seen them in salads all year long but with summer’s best in season right now, you can use them in pretty much every part of your meal.
Start with Sandra’s five-ingredient Cucumber Yogurt Dip that marinates cucumbers in sour cream, yogurt and Greek seasonings. Serve it with pita chips or, yes, more cucumber slices. You can also try Aarti’s Indian-inspired version with fresh mint and make Cucumber Raita.
For an Italian twist on a summer favorite, drizzle grilled chicken breasts and thighs with a light basil-garlic sauce. Save yourself time after work and make the marinade in the morning — the longer the chicken sits in it, the more flavorful it will be.
Make it a complete meal by serving Food Network Magazine’s hearty Garden Bean Salad alongside.
Award-winning blogger and best-selling cookbook author Ree Drummond is bringing her down-home recipes to Food Network on August 27 in her new show, The Pioneer Woman. Over the past five years, Drummond has chronicled her life as a big-city-gal-turned-rancher’s-wife on her remarkable food and lifestyle blog. Now, she gives fans an inside look into her family’s picturesque Oklahoma ranch as she offers a slice of frontier life mixed with hearty family meals and elegant menus for entertaining.
“Ree’s easy-going humor and down-to-earth approach to food and life have won her millions of devoted fans online,” says Bob Tuschman, General Manager and Senior Vice President, Programming and Production for Food Network. “Now, in The Pioneer Woman, she welcomes us into the vibrant and beautiful home she has created and demonstrates how she makes her simple yet delicious variations on traditional American fare into memorable mealtimes for family and friends.”
Tune in: Saturday, August 27 at 11:30 a.m. Eastern/ 10:30 a.m. Central
Every week, Alex Guarnaschelli, host of Alex’s Day Off, shares with readers what she’s eating — whether it’s from the farmers’ market or fresh off the boat, she’ll have you craving everything from comfort food to seasonal produce.
I love the sharp, mustard-like bite of radishes and I almost put them in the spicy food category. Let’s face it, when up against such voluptuous supermarket contenders like corn, asparagus and tomatoes, you have to ask yourself, “Why buy them?” For many reasons. Here’s one: Daikon and watermelon radishes are sweet and very juicy. They have an amazing texture, adding a low-calorie, flavor-packed punch to any salad. The more common types, Breakfast or Easter Egg radishes, are more peppery. I love mixing them with fresh chiles or topping a steak or fish with slices of radish (or roasted whole) for a change of pace.
There’s something here for everyone with Giada’s garden-fresh side dish of grilled peppers, squash, zucchini, eggplant, mushrooms, asparagus and green onions. After the vegetables have been taken off the grill, drizzle a dressing of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, fresh parsley, basil and rosemary over the top. Whether you’re serving this for dinner or entertaining a party over the weekend, this dish can be served room temperature — leaving you plenty of time to mingle with friends and family.
These aren’t your average chicken tacos — Bobby’s sweet and spicy version is filled with grilled poblanos, barbecued onions and fresh coleslaw. Lean chicken breasts are seasoned with some of his favorites: ancho chili powder, cinnamon, cumin and light brown sugar.
Editor’s Note: If you’re looking to cut down the prep time to make this a weeknight meal, try the following:
1. Buy packaged cabbage-mix that has already been shredded.
2. If you don’t have time to make Bobby’s delicious Fire Roasted Green Chile Guacamole, substitute it with your favorite salsa, especially a tomatillo-based salsa.
In between trips to the beach and grilling at the house, gather the family and check out the latest Food Network has to offer this weekend:
Amusement Park Eats
Get ready for the sweetest ride of your life as host George Duran discovers some of the tastiest treats that amusement parks have to offer. These menus start at cotton candy and corn dogs, and move on to unusual and exotic dishes. Tune in: Saturday, July 16 at 8:00 p.m. Eastern/ 7 p.m. Central