Stuffed Sweet Peppers

-Heat the oven to 375 degrees.

-Slice 3-4 peppers in half lengthwise then scoop out any seeds and membrane.

For the filling:

-Cut 4 slices of thick cut bacon crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick strips.

-Add to a pan over medium heat.

-Cook, stirring often, until crisp.

-Transfer cooked bacon to a paper towel to drain.

-Dice half an onion.

-Add the onion to the pan used to cook the bacon. If the pan seems dry, add a splash of olive oil.

-Cook for 2-3 minutes.

-Add 1 clove of minced garlic and cook for about 30 seconds.

-Remove from the heat.

-Add the following to a bowl:

4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

4 ounces goat cheese, at room temperature

Juice of half a lemon

1/8 tsp red pepper flakes

1/4 tsp dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon sea salt

-Mix until well blended.

-In another bowl, combine the following:

3 TBS melted butter

3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
The bacon

 -Spoon the cheese mixture into each pepper half then place the pepper, filling side down, into the buttery breadcrumbs.

-Arrange pepper halves, filling side up on the baking sheet.

-Bake the peppers until they have softened and the breadcrumbs are golden brown, about 20 minutes.


How to Freeze Cantaloupe Or Watermelon (For Smoothies and Drinks)

-Cut a cantaloupe or watermelon into 1 inch chunks.

-Place the cantaloupe pieces on a lined baking tray (use parchment, plastic wrap, or wax paper).

-Place the tray into the freezer to quick freeze the cantaloupe.

-After pieces freeze solid, pack them into freezer bags or containers.

-To remove air from bags, try using a straw or vacuum sealer.

-Frozen cantaloupe is a terrific addition to iced teas or mineral water and creates flavorful smoothies and sorbet. You can also blend it to create traditional or virgin daiquiris or margaritas.

-For best quality, eat frozen cantaloupe and watermelon within 9 to 12 months.


Cantaloupe Ice Cream

-Peel 1 cantaloupe.

-Cut into 1-inch chunks.

-In a large bowl, combine the cantaloupe with 1/3 cup of sugar.

-Cover and allow to marinate for at least 6 hours in the refrigerator.

-In a saucepan, simmer the marinated cantaloupe pieces in the juices of the marinade over medium-low heat.

-Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, then remove and cool.

-Puree the cantaloupe mixture in a blender or food processor.

-Add 1½ TBS lime juice and process again.

-Cover and chill for an hour.

-In a large bowl, combine the following:

1¾ cups half-and-half

1¼ cup coconut milk

½ cup sugar

-Stir in pureed cantaloupe, stirring gently to mix.

-Freeze mixture for about 2 hours, then transfer to an ice cream maker and proceed with the manufacturer’s instructions for making ice cream.

-Place cantaloupe ice cream into an air-tight container and return to freezer for 2 hours before serving.

Watermelon Margaritas

-Cut 1 watermelon into ½ inch chunks (easier to blend when frozen).

-Put cut watermelon on a cookie sheet and place in freezer and freeze solid, about 1-2 hours.

-Remove watermelon and place in a plastic bag, keep in the freezer until ready to mix your drinks.

-Place the following ingredients in your blender:

3 TBS fresh lime juice

6 ounces silver tequila

2 ounces Cointreau or triple sec

1.5 cups water

2.5 cups frozen watermelon

-Puree until smooth.

-Garnish with a watermelon wedge if you wish.


Watermelon Smoothie

-Cut 1 watermelon into ½ inch chunks (easier to blend that way).

-Line a cookie sheet with waxed paper.

-Place the watermelon on the cookie sheet, leaving space between the pieces.

-Cover with plastic wrap and freeze 1 hour (if storing for later, transfer to a freezer bag.

-Place frozen watermelon chunks in blender.

-Top with following in order:

1 cup milk (or almond milk, soy milk or whole milk)

½  cup vanilla yogurt

 1-2 TBS maple syrup

-Blend until smooth.

-Serve watermelon smoothies immediately, using chilled glasses.

-Garnish with a wedge of watermelon and fresh mint, if desired.


Watermelon Salad with Mint and Arugula

-Cut a 3-4 pound watermelon in half.

-Slice about an inch off the bottom of each half, then remove the rind.

-Cut into 1-inch chunks.

-Place watermelon chunks in a large bowl.

-With a vegetable peeler, take 4, 2-inch strips of rind off of a lemon.

-Finely chop the strips of lemon zest.

-Add 1 TBS lemon juice and half of zest to bowl with watermelon.

-Cut 1 bunch of arugula into thin strips then spin dry.

-Add the following to the watermelon:

3 TBS extra-virgin olive oil

¼ cup roughly chopped fresh mint leaves

The chopped arugula

A small pinch of finely ground sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

-Transfer salad to a wide, shallow bowl or

-a large plate and spread out evenly.

-Crumble ¼ cup feta cheese over the top.

-Sprinkle with remaining lemon zest.

-Drizzle with more olive oil and some more black pepper.

-Serve immediately.


Melon and Yogurt Smoothie

-Add the following to a blender:

1 TBS fresh lime juice, from 1 lime

2 cups cubed ripe cantaloupe, from about half a medium melon

½ cup plain yogurt

10 mint leaves, plus more for garnish if desired

½ TBS honey (adjust to taste)

Pinch salt

2 ice cubes

-Blend until completely smooth, about 30 seconds.

-Serve immediately, garnished with mint if desired.


Melon Carpaccio with Lime

-Bring ½ cup sugar and ¼ cup water to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat

-Stir to dissolve sugar.

-Add 4 small mint sprigs.

-Cut half a jalapeno pepper into thin strips, then add to the sugar/mint.

-Scrape in seeds from ½ a vanilla bean; add bean.

-Remove syrup from heat; cover and let steep for 15 minutes for flavors to infuse.

-Strain syrup through a fine-mesh sieve into a small bowl.

-Zest 1 lime.

-Then stir in ½ cup fresh lime juice (about 3 limes).

-Cut 1 melon in half, then seed and peel it.

-Cut crosswise into ¼ inch slices.

-Arrange melon slices in a 13x9x2" glass baking dish.

-Pour syrup over melon in baking dish.

-Cover with plastic wrap and chill for 2 hours to allow flavors to meld.

-Divide melon slices among plates, over-lapping them decoratively.

-Pour remaining syrup in dish into a small pitcher.

Drizzle some of syrup over melon.

-Garnish with mint leaves and lime zest.


Watermelon and Tomato Salad with Feta and Toasted Almonds

-Cut 1 small watermelon into 1-inch chunks and place in a large bowl.

-Cut 1 pound of ripe tomatoes into half inch chunks, then add to the bowl with tomato.

-Sprinkle with half a tsp of fleur de sel, then toss to blend.

-Let stand 15 minutes.

-Toast ¼ cup of sliced almonds over low heat until just browned.

-Add the following to the tomato/melon mixture:

2 TBS extra virgin olive oil

2 tsp red wine vinegar

1 TBS chopped fresh herbs
(such as cilantro, basil or mint)

-Season with black pepper and more salt if desired and toss.

-Sprinkle with ½ cup feta cheese and  the toasted almonds and serve.

Pickled Watermelon Rind

-Using a vegetable peeler, remove tough green rind from 1 whole watermelon; discard.

-Slice watermelon 1" thick.

-Cut away all but ¼" flesh from each slice; reserve flesh for another use.

-Cut rind into 1" pieces. (You should have about 4 cups.)

-Combine the following in a large saucepan over medium heat:

1 serrano chile, thinly sliced, seeds removed if desired

1, 1" piece peeled ginger, thinly sliced

2 star anise pods

4 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp black peppercorns

1 cup sugar

1 cup unseasoned rice vinegar

½ cup water

-Stir to dissolve sugar and salt.

-Add watermelon rind and return to a boil.

-Reduce heat and simmer until just tender, about 5 minutes.

-Remove from heat and let cool, setting a small lid or plate directly on top of rind to keep submerged in brine, if needed.

-Transfer rind and liquid to an airtight container; cover and chill at least 12 hours.


Artichokes with Garlic Aioli

-Trim 2 artichokes, leaving 1.5 inches of stem.

-Then carefully peel the stem.

-Pack them upright in a large pot.

-Break a head of garlic up into cloves.

-Pour in 1 cup of water.

-Bring to a boil.

-Reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 35 minutes.

-Transfer to a plate; let cool.

-Peel and mash 4 of the steamed garlic cloves.

-Stir in the following:

1 cup mayonnaise

1 TBS finely grated lemon zest

2 TBS fresh lemon juice

¼ tsp white pepper

A pinch of sugar

A pinch of sea salt

-Refrigerate artichokes and aioli separately until ready to serve.

Artichoke with Lemon Zest and Sea Salt

-Use a large, sharp knife and cut off the top third of 2 artichokes.

-Peel off the smallest bottom leaves and use scissors to trim the sharp thorn tips off each of the remaining leaves.

-Use the knife to cut the stem leaving about and inch-and-a-half.

-Fill a deep stockpot with ½ inch of water and bring to boil.

-Place cleaned artichoke face down in the water, reduce heat to simmer, cover with a lid and set a timer for 20 minutes.

-When the timer goes off, use tongs to turn the artichoke so it sits upright.

-Gently drizzle olive oil over the artichokes; being sure it drips down between the leaves and into the heart.

-Sprinkle generously with sea salt.

-Add another cup of water to the pot so the depth is back to ½ inch.

-Cover again and reset timer another 20 minutes.

-After the second timer goes off, use tongs to try and remove an outer leaf.

-If it pulls off easily, turn off the pot and transfer artichoke to a serving plate. If the leaf does not tear off easily, replace the lid on the pot and steam an additional 5 minutes, no more.

-Zest a lemon.

-Squeeze a lemon slice or two over the leaves.

-Add a few more sprinkles of salt and serve.

Shiso Pesto

In a food processor add the following:
1/4 cup raw pistachio nuts
10-14 shiso leaves
1 Tsp miso paste
Half a clove of garlic
Half a lemon
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

-Pulse until evenly ground.
-The consistency should be between a sauce and a paste.
-Miso should make the pesto salty enough, but you can adjust the salt and lemon to your liking.

Dragon's Tongue Beans with Aioli

For the aioli: 
Put the following into the blender:
A whole egg
A pinch of sea salt
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
-Blend on high.
-Add another ¾ cup olive oil in a light steady stream until all is incorporated
-Then add 3 TBS fresh lemon juice.
-Finely chop 1-3 cloves of garlic with some salt until smooth and then stir it into the mayonnaise. 
For the beans: 
-Tip and tail 1 pound of Dragon's Tongue beans.
-Steam them until just tender, about 3-5 minutes. 
-Toss the beans with some garlic aioli.
-Taste for salt and serve warm.


Sue’s Garden Quesadillas

Peas and cheddar are amazing together!

-Roughly chop 1 small handful of snow peas.

-Grate 2-3 carrots.

-Chop up some dill and/or cilantro.

-Grate some cheese (sharp cheddar, queso fresco or spicy jack would be nice).

-Melt some butter over low heat in a large frying pan.

-Add 2 corn tortillas and fry on one side until lightly browned.

-Flip over; on half the tortilla add some cheese, some peas, some green onions and some dill.

-Top with some more cheese, fold over and fry over very low heat until the cheese is melted and the tortillas are browned.

Summer Squash Cake with Ginger and Hazelnuts

-Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

-Sift together the following:

2 cups flour

1 tsp baking soda

¾ tsp baking powder

½ tsp salt

-Stir in 1¼ cups sugar.

-Grate enough summer squash so you have 1½ cups.

-In another bowl, whisk together the following:

2 large eggs

½ cup melted butter

⅓ cup orange juice

2 tsp orange zest

2 tsp peeled and grated ginger root

1 tsp vanilla extract

-Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the flour and stir until just combined.

-Fold in ½ cup chopped hazelnuts and the summer squash.

-Butter and flour a 8x8 square pan.

-Scrape the batter into the pan and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 30-35 minutes.

Ronde de Nice Squash and Carrot Fritters with Yogurt Dip

Summer Squash and Carrot Fritters with Yogurt Dip

-Grate 4 small carrots.

-Then grate 2 large Ronde de Nice summer squash.

-To make the batter for the fritters: in a large bowl, whisk together the following:

1 cup flour, more as needed

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp ground coriander

½ tsp sea salt

-In a separate large bowl, whisk together the following

1 cup milk, more as needed

1 large egg

¼ tsp grated lemon zest

¼ tsp pepper

-Pour dry ingredients into wet; whisk until just blended, batter should be slightly thicker than cream. If it’s too thick, add some milk; if it’s too thin, sprinkle with additional flour.

-Stir in the carrots, zucchini and scallions.

-Allow to rest for 30 minutes.

-To make the yogurt dip: using a mortar and pestle or the back of a knife, mash together the 1 finely chopped garlic clove and ¼ tsp sea salt.

-In a small bowl, whisk together:

½ cup plain yogurt

1 TBS chopped mint or cilantro

1 TBS extra virgin olive oil

The garlic/salt mixture

-Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

-Fill a wide saucepan with 1 inch of olive oil; heat until the temperature registers 375 degrees on a deep-fry thermometer (or until a small drip of batter browns immediately).

-Line a cookie sheet with paper towels.

-Working in batches, drop battered vegetables by the tablespoon into the oil, being sure not to overcrowd the pan.

-Fry, turning occasionally, until golden all over, about 3 to 4 minutes.

-Use a slotted spoon to transfer fritters to the cookie sheet to drain.

-Transfer fritters to a platter or plate; sprinkle with sea salt and serve with yogurt dip.

Stuffed Eggplant with Lamb and Pine Nuts

-Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

-Cut 2 large eggplants in half the long way.

-Place the eggplant cut-side up in a roasting pan large enough to accommodate them snugly.

-Brush the eggplant with 4 TBS extra virgin olive oil.

-Season with sea salt and fresh pepper.

-Roast for 20 minutes.

-Remove from the oven to cool slightly.

-While the eggplant is cooking, make the stuffing...

-Mix together the following in a small bowl:

1.5 tsp ground cumin

1.5 tsp sweet paprika

1 TBS ground cinnamon

-Dice up 1 onion.

-Heat 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil in a large frying pan.

-Add half of the spice mix to the pan along with the onion.

-Cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring often.

-Add the following to the pan:

1 pound ground lamb

1/4 cup pine nuts

1/2 bunch chopped cilantro or a handful of basil

2 tsp tomato paste

1 tsp honey

1/2 tsp sea salt and some freshly ground black pepper

-Continue to cook and stir until meat is cooked.

-In a small bowl mix together the following:

2/3 cup water

1 TBS fresh lemon juice

1 tsp tamarind paste

4 cinnamon sticks

1/4 tsp sea salt

The remaining spice mix

-Cover the pan tightly with a lid or aluminum foil, return to the oven and roast for 1.5 hours.

-Twice during the cooking, remove the lid/foil and baste the eggplants with the sauce, adding some water if necessary.

-Serve warm, not hot or at room temperature.