Raw Rainbow Corn Salad

{a bowl of summer}

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August 1st.  Wow, is it just me or has this year flown by?  I honestly cannot believe it is already August.  That being said, summer is in its last month & before I know it Bryan, Chase and I will be heading out to the apple orchard for our annual fall trip.  Then we will be bundled up trudging through the snow to go pick out the perfect Christmas tree.  But just not quite yet…. There are far too many summer days to soak up & recipes to create.

Has anyone tried to freeze corn on the cob before?  I see them at the grocery store, but am thinking about trying it out so I have some of this amazing summer sweet corn for the winter.

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This summer corn has appeared in several of my recipes and oftentimes is our side dish.  Not only are they so easy to make, but there are so many ways to cook (or not) them.  I grilled the corn, which I used in the Kale & Corn Salad I posted on Paige’s site.  I also added them to my summer Shrimp & Corn Chowder.  For this recipe, I left the kernels as is, straight up raw off the cob.

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Originally, I made this salad for my sister & her husband’s going away party.  If I do say so myself, it was a pretty decent hit.  I whipped it up for one of my girlfriend’s bachelorette parties…again a successful dish.  It also makes for some great leftovers.  All of the flavors meld together & become bolder as they sit.  Another added bonus, the beautiful colors.  I used literally every color of the rainbow.. ok I didn’t use blue so I made sure to use a blue bowl for serving.  This dish is definitely eye-catching & I loved photographing it!

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If you know how to chop & you love an easy, yet crowd-pleasing dish this is your winner.  No cooking involved.  Simply chop, mix, serve.  I hope you are enjoying these beautiful (cool in MI) summer nights & taking time to cook delicious food, relax with family & truly enjoy life!  I know I am :)

Raw Rainbow Corn salad

Recipe by: Sara
Prep Time:  15 minutes   |||   Cook TIme: 0 minutes   |||   Servings: 8-10   |||   Difficulty: Very Low

Ingredients
8 ears of corn, husked & silk removed
1/2 orange bell pepper, diced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 lime, juiced and zest
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp chipotle seasoning
1 Tbsp cumin
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
5 oz queso fresca, crumbled

Directions
1.  Remove the kernels from their cobs by placing a coffee cup upside-down in a large bowl.  Hold the cob vertically, using the base of the coffee mug as its platform.  Use your knife to slice down the cob.  The kernels will fall into the bowl.
2.  Add all other ingredients, except about 1 oz. of the cheese.  Stir together.
3.  Chill in the fridge until ready to serve & top with remaining cheese.

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Simple Fresh Herbed Reds

{meat & potatoes}

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Another side dish strikes again!  I love red potatoes.  Well, I love potatoes.  However, I know my body doesn’t necessarily need the sugars and carbs that come along with them.  However, for some reason I pretend eating red potatoes is healthier.

I’ve made them every which way:  mashed, smashed, boiled, roasted, potato salad, sauted into a hash.  Their mild flavor allows any flavor to stick nicely to them.  Also, their small shape results in a quick cooking potato.  My go-to definitely is a simple roasted red potato.  I usually quarter them and then roast with some olive oil.  Season with salt and pepper.  Boom.  Done and done.  However, the night I decided to make these I had no intention of putting on the oven (I had the self cleaner on and it already made the house hot enough).

Now, my method for making this little side dish isn’t the most nutrient-saver friendly, but it was quick and tasty.  Sometimes, quick and tasty are my best friends.  I took a few of the potatoes (washed) and put them into a plastic bag and cut a small vent.  Into the microwave they went to steam to perfection.  It was about 6-8 minutes until they were fork tender.  Tossed them in my fresh herbs and plated them with our spicy sausages.

Sometimes there’s just something delicious and comforting about a basic meat and potatoes dinner.  This super simple side dish is ready in minutes, but tastes fresh & flavorful.  If you are a busy mom/dad/person, this is something to add to your “quick dinners” list.  They go well with any type of meat, poultry or fish.  Afraid of the ol’ microwave?  Half the potatoes and roast in the oven then toss with the herbs.

I hope you all are having a great week thus far and enjoying our beautiful summer weather!  Speaking of… wouldn’t these potatoes pair nicely with a delicious juicy grilled steak??

simple fresh herbed red potatoes

Recipe By:  Sara
Prep Time:  5 minutes   |||   Cook TIme:  6-8 minutes   |||   Servings: 2 |||   Difficult Level:  Way Low

Ingredients:
6-8 medium red potatoes
1 Tbsp extra virg olive oil
1/2 tsp fresh thyme
1/2 tsp fresh rosemary
1/2 tsp fresh sage
1 Tbsp grated parmesan cheese
salt and pepper

Directions:
1.  In a ziplock bag, place the clean potatoes and close.  Pierce a small hole for a vent.
2.  Microwave for 6-8 minutes or until fork tender.
3.  While they cook, chop the herbs then combine with the oil, salt, pepper and parm.  Stir to combine.
4.  Carefully remove from the steam bag from the microwave.  Let cool 1 minute.
5.  Remove potatoes and half them.  Instantly toss with the oil/herb mixture.  The heat from the inner potato will warm and wilt the herbs.
6.  Serve immediately.

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Enjoy!

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Maple Sage Roasted Carrots

{what’s up, doc?}IMG_3130I forget about carrots a lot.  Cooked ones at least.  We eat our fair share of raw carrots & hummus in my house, but roasting them is always overseen.  Probably because Chase prefers them raw and Bryan doesn’t care for them at all.  I think he liked these ones though!  He ate some… unless he just ate them because I made him.

Anyways… my family always adds a green vegetable to our dinner plate and I decided it’s about time we branch out a little bit.  Don’t get me wrong, I could eat asparagus, green beans and/or broccoli all day.  However, I needed some beta-carotene and had some sage to use in the fridge.

This simple and delicious recipe took minutes to make and is quite not so doughie.  It photographs nicely too.  I recommend just cutting off the leafy greens and keeping the carrots whole – definitely a beautiful presentation if you have guests.  I grabbed a small baking casserole dish to roast them in so I had to cut them to fit.

Maple Sage Roasted Carrots

hands-on time:  5 minutes   ///   cook time:  15-20 minutes   ///   servings:  4

Ingredients:
1 bushel of organic carrots
2 Tbsp maple syrup
1 Tbsp fresh sage, minced
1 Tbsp olive oil
salt & pepper

Directions:
1.  Cut the leafy greens off of the carrots and then thoroughly rinse them.
2.  Preheat the over to 400 degrees
3.  Place carrots on a baking dish and drizzle with olive oil and maple syrup.
4.  Use your hands to coat the carrots.
5.  Sprinkle on the sage & season as desired.
6.  Roast in over for about 15-20 minutes depending on preferred texture.  I like mine still a bit crunchy so 15 minutes was plenty.

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eat your carrots!

xoxosara

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Cauliflower Bake

{the new potato gratin}

Lately, cauliflower has been all the rage.  I love veggies, but cauliflower is on the bottom of my list.  I like it, but it doesn’t do anything for me.  It is so bland and I always think it is a rejected broccoli.  However, I wanted to try something out to see if all the hype is really worthwhile.  I was going to try out the mashed cauliflower, but due to my sacred love of mashed potatoes I just couldn’t sway from a comfort food favorite.  I decided to try it as a gratin or casserole of sorts.  I made a not so doughie cheese sauce and baked the dish in the oven.  I am not sure I can call this a gratin as gratins typically consist of a layered arrangement.  Cauliflower can’t really be layered smoothly.  I really liked this dish.  Cauliflower grew a little more on my vegetable like list.  It satisfied my starch craving and was nice to add a new side dish to my plate.  The cauliflower can also be substituted for broccoli and if you must, potatoes.

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{Click here for the recipe}

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