Summer Cooking

I feel as though I am MIA these days…but really I’m not! I’m just spending way too much time in my handsome, newly fenced-in back yard and my not-so-lovely kitchen, lounging outside in the sun and inside cooking up a storm. I have also been hiding, peeking out at the extreme weather we have been experiencing this summer, serving up some serious summer comfort food to my hard-working "boys".

I have been working on some truly delicious recipes (coming soon!) and reading some seriously amazing cookbooks (reviews coming soon!) so be sure not to stray too far. To tide you over, here are a few of my all-time favourite savoury summer recipes:

Tomato, Onion and Goat Cheese Tarts
These small tarts are perfect for a picnic or a nice cool evening when you don’t mind using the oven (or the toaster oven!).

Barbeque Chicken Wings
I think that chicken wings are the ideal acompaniment to watching a summer baseball or softball game – at the park or in the living room.

Coffee Marinated Steak
This is a cottage favourite. Rich and robust, perfect with grilled vegetables and garlic mashed.

Deviled Eggs
What backyard party is complete with these little treats?

Spicy Seared Scallops
This dish is simple but delicious – my favourite combination!

Lemon-Garlic Grilled Shrimp
These shrimp are so good you will peel them while you eat them and lick your fingers all night long.

Caprese Salad
If you can wait until your garden tomatoes come into season this is the perfect use for them. Otherwise pick up some fresh Ontario Beefsteak tomatoes at the market.

Chicken Fajitas
Fajitas are easy on the stove or the grill and are always delicious!

Maple Mustard Moose Wings
A Canadian version of "Buffalo Wings" that’ll make you want it to be Canada Day all over again!

Me Without Mittens

Something happens to me this time of year…for some reason I become giddy and full of energy as the days become longer and grow just a little bit warmer. It might be the promise of better times ahead (it’s been a tough fall and even tougher winter) or the idea of seeing all the trees begin to bud. Perhaps it is the idea of paring down the wardrobe to one sweater (rather than three) and one jacket (rather than two) and wearing shoes rather than boots once the weather starts to pick up. It may even be the lovely long weekend coming up that revolves around food and chocolate and candy and family. It may be the nearness of my birthday… I can’t quite put my finger on what it is exactly but I am pretty pumped about spring finallycoming.

Spring is looming. You can feel it on the street when the breeze blows just a bit lighter and slightly warmer. It is right around the corner, just waiting to surprise you with melting snow everywhere and kids (including my own) jumping in every puddle they come across. The stores are stocked with Easter decorations and candies and April is less than two weeks away. Spring is without a doubt on its way.

I practically live off of soups and stews during the cold winter months. Heavy, meat and vegetable-laden concoctions that have oodles of time to simmer on the stove while I huddle inside of a pile of sweaters. But once the temperatures start to run upwards and the sweaters start to come off I still crave the comfort of soups…just on the lighter, greener side. Soups like this one keep me hopeful that spring is just around the corner and keep me warm down to my toes until the temperature outside warms up a bit more.