Simple summer meals

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Since I’m all alone this week I thought I would go hog wild in the kitchen trying out new recipes and enjoying all kinds of new dishes. More specifically I really wanted to delve into my two new cookbooks and start discovering new favorites. I wanted to make a mess. I wanted to burn something. I wanted to explore outside of my gastronomic box.

But that hasn’t happened. In fact, far from it. Instead of cooking up a storm I’ve been planting, pruning, painting and repairing electrical. I used the chop saw (don’t tell Jack) and didn’t cut my own finger off (yay me!). Amongst my many home projects I managed to finally re-do our laundry closet (more on that in a later post.)

It’s also been 90 degrees and hot as hell. Cranking up the heat in the kitchen just didn’t feel all that appealing. Therefore, my culinary skills have stayed ultra simple. Yet somehow these simple meals were perfect.

Here were three different meals.

#1. GRILLED ASPARAGUS. They’re still in season and looking pretty good.

Simple prep: Peel, lightly season with sea salt, pepper and olive oil. Toss these babies onto your grill. I have a cast iron grill on our stove top that I can’t live without. They grill up in 8 minutes. Beautifully crunchy and perfect for eating with your fingers. A one-dish meal that doesn’t even require silverware! Perfection.

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#2. TOAST. Toast plus almond butter. Toast plus cheese. Toast plus tomato. Toast plus (name your favorite topping). Man, is toast the most versatile meal base or what? But don’t just do any kind of nutritionless Wonderbread. Get yourself a loaf or baguette packed with flavor and with a texture you can sink your teeth into. Get yourself something with weight.

Simple prep: Slice. Butter, or not. Toss onto a heated grill for 3 minutes on each side. Add topping of your choice. I added a slice of brie, let it melt and then squiggled some chile sauce on top. Dee-vine!

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#3. ROASTED CAULIFLOWER. One of my favorite one-dish meals is a big bowl of roasted cauliflower. I can eat a whole head myself. This recipe comes compliments of my sister. When we get together we always have this simple dish at least once.

Simple prep: Turn on your broiler. Cut cauliflower into florets and place on a baking sheet. Add peas if you have any. Sprinkle with olive oil, tumeric, curry, cloves, cinnamon, black pepper and sea salt, all according to taste. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes.

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There you have it—simple summer meals. It’s not what I thought I’d be doing in the kitchen right now, but I think it tastes just as good.

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