With fresh herbs and fruit, you can add an unexpected, summery twist to your meals.
Here are 10 quick tricks:
1) Not only does watermelon taste better in season, but the abundance makes the prices equally delicious! Buy one the size of a duffel bag and eat it with reckless abandon. Even better? Tear up fresh mint and sprinkle it atop. Or add feta and lettuce to make a salad out of it.
2) Add some life to your water and throw in basil leaves and peach slices. At first the taste will be clean and herbal. Then it will give way to a peachy sweetness.
3) Figs are heaven on their own. But stuffed with goat cheese, drizzled with honey, then broiled for a short bit? I can’t even talk about it.
4) Did you know that strawberries and balsamic vinegar go together like chocolate and peanut butter? True story. Enjoy them on their own, or drizzle strawberries with a sweet balsamic truffle glaze.
5) Take a few generous springs of rosemary and nestle them into the cavity of a chicken. While roasting, it will subtly permeate the bird with flavor.
6) Salads aren’t just for vegetables. A vinaigrette is the perfect accompaniment to salads featuring anything from blueberries to peaches to strawberries.
7) Back to water again. Lemon rounds and mint are the freshest-tasting compliments to this sometimes drab drink.
8) Enough with these fake tacos, filled with ground beef and neon orange cheese. Authentic Mexican packs 10x more flavor and has half the calories. Instead of ground beef, go with marinated grilled steak (carne asada) and top it with onions and the season’s fresh cilantro. Make salsa with ripe summer tomatoes.
9) When grilling kabobs on the barbecue, stack the kabobs with pineapple or peach slices. They grill well, and the smoky sweetness is addictive.
10) Fresh-squeezed grapefruit makes an excellent salad dressing. Drizzle it over greens with some freshly-chopped tarragon, thyme and basil, and enjoy the tart, herbal goodness!