Recipes Fresh from the Farmers' Market
Roasted Salmon with Smoky Chickpeas & Greens
In this healthy salmon dinner, you'll get a dose of greens and green dressing! Chowing down on 6 or more servings of dark leafy greens a week can help keep your brain in top shape. This dish features the Test Kitchen's current go-to method for doctoring a can of chickpeas: spice them up and roast until crispy.
Bean & Tomato Salad with Honey Vinaigrette
This beautiful salad combines fresh tomatoes, green beans, red onions and dried heirloom beans. Recently harvested beans (and thus freshly dried) cook more quickly than the kind you buy year-round at the market. In the latter part of the summer, farmers' markets begin to sell a fresh crop of heirloom varieties that would be perfect for this salad.
Grilled Chicken Ratatouille
We gave this classic Provençal dish a taste of summer by grilling the vegetables traditionally used in ratatouille (bell pepper, eggplant, zucchini, tomato). Topped with grilled chicken, it makes an easy main course for summer entertaining. We like fresh marjoram and basil to complement the flavors, but any fresh herb will work. Serve with polenta and a glass of Pinot Noir.
This tomatillo-based gazpacho is gorgeously green with a tart flavor that complements the sweet shrimp and salty olives. Make this meatless by substituting ricotta salata or feta for the shrimp. Serve with: Cheese quesadillas.
Arugula Salad with Honey-Drizzled Peaches
Rich, nutty pecans complement the creamy tang of the goat cheese and peppery arugula balances the sweet juicy peaches and drizzle of honey in a simple, satisfying salad that lets the pure flavors of the ingredients shine.
Mexican Grilled Corn
Street vendors across Mexico sell this style of roasted or grilled corn--topped with mayonnaise, chili powder and Cotija cheese. You can serve the unadorned corn on a platter with small bowls of the sauce, cheese and lime on the side so everyone can make their own.
Fresh Pomodoro Pasta, White Beans & Olives
Capture the flavor of vine-ripe tomatoes with this elegant yet ultra-quick fresh tomato sauce. Although it's an uncooked sauce, the beans are heated briefly in the olive oil and garlic just to flavor them.
A gratin is any dish topped with cheese or breadcrumbs mixed with butter, then heated until browned--but it needn't be heavy. This one has plenty of garden-fresh tomatoes and herbs, a touch of full-flavored cheese and a crispy crumb topping.
Pea & New Potato Salad (Nye kartofler og rte Salat)
Very fresh produce is the key to this easy side dish: walnut-size new potatoes, fresh peas, scallions and sweet, early-summer radishes. Danes insist on the freshest, newest potatoes possible (those from Bjäre peninsula of Skåne, in southern Sweden, are coveted with cultlike devotion). Look for them in farmers' markets in spring and early summer.
This traditional Italian bread salad is full of tomatoes and cucumber and gets a protein boost with the addition of grilled salmon.
Roasted Corn with Basil-Shallot Vinaigrette
A simple combination--roasted corn with a basil vinaigrette--has a fresh flavor that is pure summer.
A refreshing Middle Eastern street drink.
Rustic Berry Tart
The secret to this free-form tart is the layer of ground almonds under the berries: it thickens the juices, prevents a soggy crust and delivers an exquisite background flavor for the intense berries.
The secret to the sparkling flavor of these delicately crumbed muffins is the strips of lemon zest finely ground into the sugar. Enjoy the muffins warm right from the oven.
Amazing Pea Soup
Sometimes the peas in the garden outpace the picking or the supplies in the store aren't so fabulous. Here's a recipe for those less-than-perfect peas--no shucking involved. A soup for the true pea lover.
OK, so it's kind of a contradiction for a sangria, which is named for its blood-red color, to be made with white wine, but once you've tasted this festive thirst quencher it won't matter a bit. Pieces of mixed summer melons are the perfect match for a crisp Sauvignon Blanc.
Garden Tomato Sauce
This garden-fresh tomato sauce is a delicious way to use summer-ripe tomatoes. Or freeze whole tomatoes and make this sauce later on in the winter. Just remove the cores and freeze them whole. Then, turn your frozen tomatoes into a garden-fresh sauce any time of the year. For pizza sauce: In Step 2, cook until thickened to about the consistency of pizza sauce, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Remove from the heat, transfer to a blender, add 2 tablespoons tomato paste and blend until smooth.
Peach & Blueberry Cobbler
This is a healthier version of a traditional cobbler, with canola oil in place of some of the butter and whole-wheat flour instead of all-purpose flour. Unlike more classic biscuit-topped cobblers, the peaches and blueberries are nestled into a tender batter that swells around the fruit as it bakes. Other fruits may be substituted. It's especially beautiful when baked in and served right from a cast-iron skillet.
Spiked with ginger, this smoothie is guaranteed to perk you up after a long bike ride or make a nice starter to a summer meal on the deck. For a more aromatic variation, use a cantaloupe instead of a honeydew melon.
Snow Pea, Orange & Jicama Salad
This salad of snow peas, oranges and jícama is sweet, sour and full of crunch.
Steak & Purple-Potato Salad
This hearty steak and potato salad is inspired by salpicón, a favorite dish in Chile. The purple potatoes add vibrant color but you can substitute any young “new” potatoes that are harvested early in the season--even small fingerlings would work. Serve on a bed of spicy mesclun greens to round out the meal. This recipe can easily be doubled.
Skewering mozzarella balls and cherry tomatoes makes them easy to nosh at a party.
Grilled Shrimp with Melon & Pineapple Salsa
Grilled shrimp is perfectly accented by this light, summery pineapple-melon salsa. The flavors are bright and fresh, just right for a hot day. Use just one melon or any combination of melons--including watermelon--for the versatile salsa. For best flavor marinate the shrimp overnight.
Gnocchi with Zucchini Ribbons & Parsley Brown Butter
For this recipe, convenient store-bought potato gnocchi are tossed with delicate ribbons of zucchini, shallots and cherry tomatoes that have all been sautéed in nutty browned butter.
Grilled Beef Tenderloin & Escarole
Lightly grilled escarole combined with tangy tomato vinaigrette makes an irresistible accompaniment to juicy beef tenderloin. Serve with grilled baguette.
A traditional Southern favorite, spoonbread is a typically savory dish that's like a cross between a soufflé and cornbread. Here we transform the simple ingredients into a comforting dessert with the addition of summer's best raspberries and pure Vermont maple syrup. Any type of cornmeal will work, but we love the texture that stone-ground provides.
Tomatoes and corn have a natural affinity for one another: the slight acidity of tomatoes balances the sweetness of the corn. Here they partner in a delicious quiche-like pie. The dough is very forgiving and bakes up into a sturdy shell that's great for just about any savory pie or tart. Perfect for a summer brunch or try it with a tossed salad for a light supper.
Provencal Summer Vegetables
This stunning side dish of layered tomatoes, eggplant, summer squash and leeks bursts with fresh flavor. To make it even more colorful, use half a summer squash and half a zucchini. Try it alongside any grilled meat. Leftovers are delicious sandwiched between slices of crusty whole-grain bread.
Zucchini Salad with Shaved Parmesan
Drizzle grilled zucchini with a tangy lemon vinaigrette and it becomes an easy vegetable salad. Want a little heat? Add minced fresh jalapeño.
Corn & Basil Cakes
Try these savory corn-and-basil pancakes as a side dish with barbecued chicken or grilled steak.
Grilled Eggplant & Tomato Stacks
You can grill the eggplant rounds up to a day in advance, then assemble the eggplant, tomato and mozzarella “stacks” at the last minute. To make the eggplant and tomato stacks look symmetrical, use eggplant and tomatoes with approximately the same diameter.
Lemon-Garlic Glazed Corn on the Cob
Think it doesn't get any better than corn on the cob with butter? Try cooking the corn in butter (cut with a little olive oil to reduce saturated fat) with lemon and garlic and you may change your mind.
Roasted Tomato-Bread Soup
Tomatoes, onions and garlic develop a deep, rich flavor when roasted. A mix of different colored cherry tomatoes will add a playful note. This soup is adapted from a recipe in Amy Goldman's book The Heirloom Tomato: From Garden to Table (Bloomsbury USA, 2008).
Smoked Trout, Potato & Arugula Salad
In this healthy dinner salad recipe, tender new potatoes and baby arugula add a creamy texture and peppery flavor to the smokiness of the trout. You can hard-boil the eggs ahead of time, but if you cook them while you steam your potatoes, they'll still be a little warm when you serve the salad, which makes it extra special.
Rosemary-Infused Cucumber Lemonade
Turn fresh rosemary, cucumbers and lemons into grown-up lemonade that will keep you cool on a hot day.
Seared Salmon with Sugar Snap-Fennel Slaw
A light and summery snap pea-and-fennel slaw makes a crisp bed for the seared salmon in this healthy dinner recipe. The delicate fennel fronds add more mild licorice flavor to the dish.
Kale & Gruyere Panini
This vegetarian panini recipe--filled with layers of sautéed kale, garden-fresh tomatoes and melted cheese--makes for an extra-special grilled cheese sandwich. For the best flavor, we like the complexity of aged Gruyère or fontina, but you can use any cheese you have on hand.
Summer Vegetable Pasta with Crispy Goat Cheese Medallions
This vegetarian pasta recipe is loaded with fresh vegetables--sweet spring onions, tangy cherry tomatoes and plenty of baby spinach. Goat cheese medallions are coated with panko and lightly crisped under the broiler, making this a restaurant-worthy yet super-simple and impressive weeknight dinner.
Sweet Corn Salad
Freshly harvested corn, charred green chiles and roasted tomatoes make this corn salad recipe a must-make for any summer potluck. Serve with grilled steak or chicken, as a taco topping or with tortilla chips as a dip.
Juniper-Marinated Bison Flank Steak
Rich, lean bison meat takes to the juniper-infused marinade in this easy flank steak recipe. Look for juniper berries in well-stocked supermarkets. If you can't find bison, beef flank steak is an ideal substitute.
Sicilian Pepper Salad
The defining taste of this pepper salad side dish recipe is the bold addition of vinegar and sugar that give it the pop of sweet and sour that's so common in Sicilian cooking. Serve with grilled or roasted chicken and a mixed green salad.
Grilled Eggplant & Baba Ghanoush
This healthy eggplant appetizer recipe pairs grilled eggplant slices with smoky eggplant dip. Serve with garlic-rubbed grilled bread.
Easy buttermilk biscuits top this healthy peach cobbler recipe made with a glug of bourbon. If you prefer to leave out the liquor, try swapping apple juice or cider for the bourbon.