The sun is brighter, the days are longer, and the weather has started to warm up. Scandinavia is still unpredictable with its spontaneous weather changes, but it’s still a time to dawn the summer foods! Choosing to eat produce that is in season has many benefits, two of which are cost effectiveness and taste. Vegetables that are now in season are artichokes, arugula, asparagus, corn, cucumber, fava beans, kohlrabi, peas, radishes, rhubarb, spinach and zucchini. Fruits include apricots, cherries, grapefruit, lemons, limes, passion fruit, pineapple, plums and strawberries. Albeit, the easy part is buying the ingredients, the hardest is deciding how to use them. Keep it simple by focusing on simple ingredients. These easy summer recipes, will help you to stay fit and light these first weeks of summer without involving too many items. You might find that with a little chopping, you’ll be making simply delicious and nutritious meals faster than you had ever imagined. Remember, cooking at home will not only save money, but will allow you to choose healthier, wholesome ingredients.
Green Bean Potato Salad
Adapted from foodandwine.com
What barbecue or picnic could ever be complete without a potato salad? Forget mayonnaise, this light dressing won’t weigh you down. In a medium bowl, combine the extra virgin olive oil with the freshly chopped parsley, juice and zest of a lemon, the garlic clove and salt. After boiling and chopping the the potatoes, and blanching the green beans, put them together in a large serving bowl. Personally, I also like to mix in some spinach, but that is optional. Toss generously with the lemon vinaigrette. Salt and pepper additionally to taste.
Charred Corn Salad with Fresh Herbs
Adapted from Foodandwine.com
This rendition of corn on the cob, removes the cob and leaves you with a delicious salad. Heat a grill pan. Brush the ears of corn with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill corn over moderately high heat, turning until crisp-tender, about 12 minutes. Cool. In a small bowl, combine the red onion, fresh lime juice and let stand for 10 minutes. Stir in a small spoonful of maple syrup, agave, or honey, as well as the jalapeño and extra-virgin olive oil. In a large bowl, cut the kernels off the cob. Add the onion dressing. Toss together with freshly chopped mint, parsley and cilantro and mixed greens. Salt and pepper. Add the remaining extra virgin olive oil or more if necessary.
Tiffany’s Ultimate Fruit Salad
In Scandinavia, a lot of ingredients unfortunately are not all locally sourced, but I don’t deprive myself of everything when trying to be sustainable. This is my favorite fruit salad and by far the easiest summer recipe. You’ll need any amount of chopped up chunks of watermelon, cantaloupe, pineapple. Feel free to add in any other fresh berries, pomegranates or anything that is good and summery too. Tis the season for berry goodness after all! Seriously, I just guess how much I use, you can always save it for later. Add a nice dusting of cinnamon (approximately 1 tbsp), freshly squeezed lime, and freshly chopped mint. Toss in some nuts if you like, mix and devour.
Another easy sweet? Heat up the grill. Halve some peaches and plums and remove the pits. Brush with organic butter and grill until gently softened. Add some freshly whipped cream and you’ll be in heaven! Don’t forget Thorbjörg’s dreamy summery dessert, grapefruit on a pink cloud!
In line with Hindu traditional system of medicine, Ayurveda, it’s most beneficial to eat according to the seasons and climate. Basically, like increases like. Thus, if the weather is hot and you eat warm foods, you’ll enhance that element in your body. The weather for you now should hopefully be heating up, so increase the cooler qualities within to maintain the balance both inside and out. You can do amazing things for your body this summer and feel great about yourself with those light and easy summer recipes.
For more ideas, check out the recipe chapters in Thorbjörg’s book. Due to my schedule, I’ve readjusted my detox a bit, but my major detox is set to play this next week, which means, liquids only for 3 days. We shall see how this thorough cleansing plays itself out.