This soup makes good use of two ingredients that abound in the garden during summer: zucchini and mint. Marrying the two in this refreshing soup makes for a vibrant lunch or light dinner. Cooked zucchini is very high in vitamin A, which supports good vision and a healthy immune system. Garden greens galore If you don’t have zucchini on hand, this soup is equally excellent made with about 1 lb (450 g) mixed garden greens such as Swiss chard, spinach, or collards.
Who wouldn’t want to eat ice cream for breakfast? This cool and creamy concoction only feels like an indulgence. Packed with fibre from bananas, spinach, mint, and oats, this breakfast is sure to keep you feeling full and satisfied until lunchtime. Good mood food Raw cacao nibs contain several compounds that can increase levels of serotonin and dopamine in your brain, which are generally nicknamed the “feel-good hormones.”
Bright and vibrant, golden berries give this fruity salsa fresca a tart and tangy crunch that pairs well with mango. Serve with a salad of mixed greens, and these salsa and skewers are transformed into an eye-pleasing meal that is flavour filled and delicious! With the firm texture of golden berries in the salsa and marinated chicken, this is a perfect meal to prep the day ahead and enjoy! Ripe is best Golden berries are also known as Inca berries, Cape gooseberries, physalis, or Peruvian ground cherries. Although they flourish in a warm climate and grow well in a greenhouse, these papery-husked tart berries have found their way north and can adapt well outdoors. Golden berries are part of the nightshade family and contain solanine when unripe. Solanine is a toxic metabolite that can cause digestive upset. Be sure to eat golden berries only when they are fully ripe (or dried) and eat in moderation.
Each year, beginning in late spring until the fall, nature rewards us with an array of sweet and delicious berries in an assortment of beautiful hues of yellow, orange, red, blue, and black. Found on backyard bushes, at local farmers’ markets, or growing wild in nature (if you’re fortunate to find them), summer berries are bountiful, beautiful, and delicious, with flavour and sweetness that by far surpass their transported-in counterparts of winter months! More than just a pretty snack, berries are a nutrient powerhouse full of fibre, high in vitamins and minerals, and packed with antioxidants such as anthocyanins, resveratrol, and ellagic acid. With a sustainable and local abundance of delicious berries at our doorstep, how could these delectable gems not be a daily staple all summer long? Perfect as a snack or wonderful in sweet treats, many berries also pair effortlessly with salads and make a fantastic guest star in savoury main dishes. In these five recipes, discover new ways to incorporate these delectable nutritional dynamos in vibrant and tasty recipes, and enjoy reaping the health benefits.
So smooth, so rich, and so creamy, you’ll find it hard to believe it’s not dairy! Toasted hazelnuts and coconut are bound together by sweet dates, creating the perfect nutty and gluten-free base that’s then topped with a dreamy layer of tangy blackberry decadence. These bars are easy to make and store well in the freezer for up to a week. Enjoy at room temperature or frozen—they’re delicious either way! Mix it up This recipe is just as delicious with other in-season summer berries. Try substituting the berries and base layer nuts with the following combinations: raspberries with walnuts strawberries with almonds blueberries with walnuts
Purple-stained and pillowy soft, these ricotta balls are delicate and delicious with a hint of blueberry. Once assembled, they cook quickly, so prep gnudi ahead of time for a quick and satisfying meal! Instead of olive oil, finish this dish off with a drizzle of honey and transform this dish from savoury to sweet! Gnudi are best enjoyed the day they’re made. Lost in translation Gnudi, simply pronounced “noo-dee” with a silent g, is the Tuscan dialect word for “naked.” Fittingly named, these soft, pillowy balls of ricotta are “nude ravioli,” consisting of only the tasty filling—without the outside pasta. In a pinch No cheesecloth, no problem. For squeezing the moisture from ricotta, you could try using one of the following: nut milk bag coffee filter fine wire-mesh sieve pantyhose (new) jelly bag clean dish towel
A fruity spinach salad spinoff tops a hearty crostata packed full of juicy and sweet roasted summer strawberries. Served warm or cold, this beautiful rustic tart is plenty sophisticated for any afternoon brunch. In a pinch, you could substitute frozen pie dough to make the crust. Berry intense Swap out balsamic glaze in crostata topping with this balsamic reduction with a strawberry kick!
This smoothie bowl is not just for smoothie lovers! Thick and creamy, this tangy bowl of goodness is high in protein and fibre and a perfect way to include berries at breakfast. Sweetened with banana and completely customizable, top it with your favourite nuts and seeds to help you stay energized. Try adding a teaspoon of beetroot powder when blending and watch the colour pop! Top it off Adding toppings to your smoothie bowl adds colour and texture, and also increases nutrients and fibre, while encouraging digestion by chewing! Try adding one, or a combo, of any of the following. fresh fruit granola slivered or chopped nuts pumpkin seeds chia seeds ground flaxseed hemp hearts unsweetened shredded coconut or coconut ribbons
The simplicity of this layered dessert hides its deeper and more complex aromatic flavours. A cherry compote subtly scented with rose makes an exquisite combination with cardamom yogurt and a topping of ground pistachios and dried rose petals. When buying rose petals, look for dried ones grown for edible use. Petals with polyphenols Rose petals are full of polyphenols, which are powerful antioxidant compounds that can help prevent cell damage. Rose petals and rose hips contain high levels of vitamin C, which supports our immune function. Rose petal tea also contains vitamin E, which, when taken with vitamin C, assists in maintaining healthy skin. It’s also thought that the simple aroma of rose can act to promote a relaxed mood.
Just as lavender grows alongside thyme and rosemary, it is often included with these herbs in the French dried herb mix called herbes de Provence, a classic seasoning for lamb. This recipe gets a double dose of lavender by using it first in a similarly inspired fresh herb rub to season lamb prior to cooking and then with the addition of a blueberry jus amped up with fragrant lavender. Dried lavender works best in this recipe; find it in your local specialty grocery and make sure to look for products marked “culinary grade.” Lighten your mood with lavender Many of us have experienced the relaxing feeling of inhaling the sweet scent of lavender. Lavender has been used for centuries in soaps and lotions and is used in aromatherapy because of its relaxing benefits. Studies also suggest that, taken orally, it may be beneficial for anxiety.
There’s one flower you may already have in your pantry. The thin red threads we know as saffron are the stigmas pulled from the centre of the saffron crocus. Saffron brings bright colour and subtle earthy and slightly grassy floral flavours to dishes and is frequently used in rice dishes of all kinds—from biryani to paella and risotto. Here, saffron is used with cinnamon, cloves, and orange to lend flavour and colour to quinoa along with a classic combination of almonds and currants. The sunshine spice Saffron contains phytochemicals including crocin, picrocrocin, and safranal, which are thought to be responsible for its medicinal actions. Saffron has been studied in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and may help improve symptoms. Studies have shown that taking saffron is effective in mild to moderate depression, which has earned it the name of “sunshine spice.” Taking saffron in large quantities is not recommended, as it may be toxic at higher doses.
These mussels make an elegant and alluring cold appetizer that will stretch to feed a crowd. The classic combination of fennel and tomatoes is enlivened with a floral vinegar, prepared in advance. Alyssum has a peppery, aniselike flavour and, like fennel, pairs well with tomatoes. All in the family Alyssum is related to the cabbage family Brassiceae, so you might also substitute kale flowers in this recipe. Brassicas have been shown to have a positive role in the prevention of cancer.
When the heat of summer has you ready to wilt, this refreshing summer gazpacho with watermelon, tomatoes, and almond is guaranteed to cool you down. Marigold petals are used to make a slightly spicy, peppery oil with mild notes of citrus; it’s used in the soup and as a beautiful edible garnish. Avoid the bases or “heels” of marigold flowers, as they can be quite bitter. Much ado about marigolds Marigolds can refer to plants from the aster (Asteraceae) family, either from the genus Tagetes or from Calendula officinalis, known as calendula, which often goes by the name pot marigold. Note that not all species of marigolds are edible, so make sure you’re selecting an edible variety from a reputable source. Marigolds contain carotenoids, yellow pigments that support the body’s immune system, and lutein, also a carotenoid, that assists with eye health.
Pretty on the plate, this salad of delicate greens contains bright, juicy, tart sorrel; crisp radish; and delicate bachelor’s buttons. Despite the blue, pink, and purple hues of bachelor’s buttons, also known as cornflowers, their flavour is fresh and green. The dressing comes together with a bachelor’s button vinegar made in advance by infusing the flower heads into apple cider vinegar for a bright, subtly sweet flavour. If you can’t find bachelor’s buttons, you can use nasturtium or violas. Powerful pigments While many take cornflower or bachelor’s button tea to treat all sorts of ailments, from fever and constipation to chest congestion and menstrual disorders, there isn’t enough scientific evidence to say whether these are effective. What we do know is that their intense blue colour is due to a pigment called protocyanin that may help reduce inflammation in the body, which in turn has powerful effects on health.
Burgers are a perennial game-day favourite, but not always a nutritional win. Root for the healthier team by swapping out beef for salmon and cheese slices for a velvety feta yogurt sauce. And then finish everything off with a stack of veggies. To let all the other flavours and textures shine through, consider subtracting the bun. For burgers, panko bread crumbs or quick-cooking oat flakes can be used as a replacement for almond flour. Thrill of the grill The salmon burgers can be prepared on the grill—but they’re delicate, which makes placing them directly on the grill grates a risky undertaking. If you want to safeguard against burgers sticking to or falling through the grates, you can lay a cast iron griddle on top of the grill and use that to heat your burgers. A greased metal vegetable basket can also work as a cooking platform.
Despite its traditional game-day look, this glorious spread is not your average stack of nachos. In a huge win for vegetarian sports fans, we swapped ground beef for meaty tempeh stewed with tomatoes and a winning mix of seasonings. Black beans, punchy radish, creamy avocado, and melty cheese round out a dish that could not be more fun to eat. If you want these nachos to be fully plant-based you can use shredded dairy-free cheese. To go a little more traditional, regular tortilla chips can be used instead of the sweet potato variety. No beef with tempeh You might be surprised at how versatile crumbled tempeh can be. Use the crumbles as a meaty meat-free option in grain bowls, tacos, burritos, pasta sauces, lasagna, chili, nachos, and in countless other ways. And it’s easy to modify them to fit any flavour profile: Mexican, Asian, or Italian, for example.
Meatballs without the meat, and fiery buffalo sauce without the pool of butter—this is a satisfying plant-based alternative to a game-day classic that everyone is sure to declare a winner. Both the sauce and meatballs can be made up to two days in advance. If you’re serving people who like things spicy, go ahead and blend in even more of the hot sauce. Sauce boss When soaked and then blended with water, raw cashews make a silky sauce that is neutral in flavour. You can leverage this to make all sorts of creamy vegan sauces, including buffalo, chocolate, and alfredo.
Top a small pita with mozzarella, chicken, and other pizza favourites, then broil, and you have a fun and breezy meal that’ll satisfy any sports fan—even during periods of defeat. No need to tip the delivery guy. And the ingredients can easily be scaled up to feed a big crowd. Small naan bread or even split English muffins can also be used as a pizza base. Crank it up Broiler power can vary from oven to oven (gas units tend to burn hotter), so a little experimenting is needed to pinpoint the ideal distance food sits from the heat. A good place to start is about 4 inch (10 cm) from the heating element when preparing items such as pizza and nachos. And remember that under the broiler, timing is critical for intense, direct heat—a point sadly illustrated when you take a short leave from the kitchen only to return to crispy black pizza crust.
This all-plant sheet-pan fajita spread made with tofu is the ultimate in easy dishes to serve a crowd. It requires minimal prep time and minimal kitchen tools, which also makes for minimal (a.k.a. quick) cleanup. Be sure to serve it with an array of different accompaniments. Good ideas include corn tortillas, refried beans, mashed avocado, diced tomato, salsa, cilantro, and sour cream. Meaty matters The key to giving tofu a meaty texture when blasted in the oven is to make sure to press out as much water as possible. This also applies to searing tofu in a skillet. If you prepare tofu often, you can even purchase special tofu presses.
Inspired by the fresh fruits used in traditional Mexican paletas, these ice pops with an unexpected twist are full of antioxidant-rich red raspberries. Not so spicy that kids can’t try them, the fruity heat of habaneros lends an unexpected, intense, and exciting flavour with a warm lingering finish. Alterations Reduce the heat if you like, or add another pepper if you’re brave, but leave the honey where it is. A certain amount of sugar is required to prevent your ice pop from being a block of ice and helps give it that nice “biteable” texture.
This take on “Texas Caviar” with the addition of quinoa lends an added punch of protein. It’s full of antioxidant-rich red vegetables and is a great source of iron, potassium, and dietary fibre. Savour it like a salad, spoon it over tacos, or scoop it like salsa; the variety of textures, flavours, and subtle spice makes this a party-perfect dish. Use those stems Cilantro stems are edible and, more importantly, highly flavourful—so don’t throw them out. Make sure they are well washed, as they can be sandy. Avoid any tough stems at the bottom of the plant, but use the tender part of the stem and chop it up, just as you would with the leaves.
Refreshing flavours with a spicy zing—and, at 15 g per serving, a whopping load of protein—come together in this classic ceviche. Rockfish, often sold under the name Pacific snapper, is high in selenium—an 85 g serving provides 44 percent of the recommended daily value of the mineral, which has a role in preventing infection and cell damage, as well as in the proper functioning of the thyroid. Rockfish is also a good source of healthy omega-3 and omega-6 fats. Ceviche tips Keep an eye on the fish while it is “cooking” in the lime/lemon juice; 30 minutes is usually optimum to achieve a “just cooked” texture. You can extend that to an hour or more, but after about 2 hours, you’ll find that the texture will change and become “overcooked.” Waiting to add the tomatoes and avocado just at serving time keeps flavours fresh and distinct.