Raspberry-Cantaloupe Salad

In this hot weather, the last thing I feel like doing is standing over the stove and cooking. (Well, actually, I’d rather cook than go for a run in the heat, but you get my point.) Usually by the time 5 o’clock rolls around, none of us has much of an appetite. On days like this, I am super thankful for my veggie garden. I love just going out to the garden and cutting some fresh lettuce, picking a couple snow peas, and grabbing a few Swiss chard leaves.

I toss it all into a salad, with whatever else I have in the house, and cook up some chicken to complete the meal. If you have teenagers, or very large appetites, this probably wouldn’t cut it, even on a hot, humid, appetite-less day, but it works for us, and we love it!

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For whatever reason, I used to despise making salads. Lettuce or spinach would regularly go to waste in the fridge. A big part of my increased interest in salad is the fact that I can get many of the ingredients right from my backyard.
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For this salad, I included:

~cantaloupe
~raspberries
~coined baby carrots
~chopped red onion
~cucumber (home grown from Dan’s parents!)
~baby romaine (from our garden!)
~a few leaves of Swiss Chard (from our garden, variety is called ‘Bright Lights’)
~the last of my snowpeas (not many)
~simple pan-fried (in a generous amount of butter!) chicken breast, cut into strips, lightly seasoned
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Top with croutons and salad dressing of your choice! The raspberry vinaigrette went extremely well with the salad, adding a nice amount of acidity to complement everything else. Next time, I would probably add a touch of feta cheese as well, but alas, I was out!
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And this is my new little frame and print beside the kitchen table, just ready to remind the kids (and us) especially at mealtimes when they are ready to say, “I don’t like that!” (We are getting nearer and nearer that stage, although our kids are generally excellent eaters.)
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The kiddies’ version of the salad 🙂 As a side note, this is a nice meal for toddlers to feed themselves: little mess, and lots of sweet flavours.

Anyway, that’s my idea of a low-prep, fresh summer meal! What do you eat on these hot, sticky days?

Move Aside, Dutch Pancakes

A few weeks ago, I stumbled across thisweekfordinner.com.

Among other delicious recipe ideas, I found a recipe for Yorkshire Pudding. I’d read about it in James Herriot books, but never thought to try it. It is more commonly eaten with roast beef (I believe) than the way I’m going to share, but trust me, this is delicious stuff.

All you do is take your basic Dutch pancake recipe, and blend the ingredients together. (Don’t quote me on this, but the ratios seem very similar. The ingredients are identical.)

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Cut a chunk of butter (salted is best) a little small than 1/4 cup and toss in a 9×13 pan. Put it in the hot oven.
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When it begins to bubble, like so ^^^ 🙂 pour your blended ingredients into the pan.
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Now it looks like that ^^ and you are wondering (I was, anyway) how this is all going to work out..
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Ta-Da! It worked out! The true colour is a lovely golden brown, not the bland stuff you see in the picture.
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For best results, top with homemade Ontario-strawberry jam! It’s a hit all around. Serve with fresh fruit to round the meal off a little. It’s probably more of a dessert, but no one here has any problems with letting it pass for dinner every once in a while. 😉

Not the healthiest, but hey, you can’t beat the deliciousness. So much less work than Dutch pancakes and (sorry, Dutch heritage) much better tasting. Plus no smoking up the house. Or maybe that’s just me. The smoke alarm going off at dinner time is a sure sign I’ve been making pancakes.

Anyway, that’s my version of the recipe. The real one I followed is here. As she notes, the recipe is easily halved. I have usually done it in an 8×8 pan, but last time did a 9×13. We had leftovers, so I’m curious how it will reheat.