summer food: part 1

4 May

So the heat is rolling in where I live; a young PCOS-sufferer’s thoughts inevitable turn to…tomatoes. And cheese. And, you know, other summer food.

Without further ado, I bring you: my summer food solution, which I reach for at least once a week when it’s hot. My family loves it (especially my kids–ages 3 and 1), and it’s easy, quick, and cool.

Choose the items you like; add anything that strikes your fancy or that is waiting impatiently in your fridge; arrange artfully on a few plates or on a platter; plunk in front of your hungry family; and eat! (Optional: wear a French scarf because it’s so European.) Try to choose from each category to make it a balanced meal; I usually try to skew toward fruits and vegetables because the presentation means that my kids are happy to eat them.

Fruits/Vegetables: grapes; strawberries; slices of kiwi; pineapple chunks; orange sections; lime or lemon wedges (my husband and kids will eat these like oranges….I think it’s crazy); carrot sticks, pepper strips, cucumber or tomato slices; leftover steamed or roasted vegetables.

Proteins: cheeses; lean deli meats, like turkey or chicken; nuts (I especially love Marcona almonds); hummus; tuna salad; hard-boiled eggs; if you’re feeling decadent, good salami or other charcuterie.

Grains/starches: whole wheat pita bread triangles (I toast them; so good with hummus!); homemade bread of any kind; popcorn; whole wheat crackers or rolls; leftover salads such as tabbouleh, pasta salad, etc.

Dips: salad dressing for vegetables; olive oil for dipping bread (especially with cracked pepper and a sprinkle of freshly-grated Parmesan).

This is a filling, lovely meal. The more vegetables and fruits you include, and the healthier your other choices, the better it is for you; at its best, this is a delicious, healthy dinner! It’s very hands-on, so it’s fulfilling in a sensory way; it’s also convivial and great for casual entertaining. And, as I said, it’s cool.

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