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Best summer vegetable recipes

Sun, 22 August, 2021

The summer has been mediocre in the UK, and that’s being charitable. But even with the lack of sunshine and temperatures not quite summery, this is the best time of the year for the produce.

There is no better time to feed yourself only the seasonal crops and still have incredible variety of fruit and veggies. I was thinking that at the local market last Friday, browsing stacks of sweetcorn in their husks, fresh peas in the pods, broad beans and bunches of beetroot.

Strawberries are finished, or as good as, but who needs them when there are punnets of sweet blueberries and raspberries? Apricots and peaches, purple plums and enormous cherries?

We grow few things in the limited space of our garden and still for the last couple of weeks we have not had to buy many vegetables (it was the fruit that mainly brought me to the market). There are beetroots and spinach, carrots and potatoes, green beans and broad beans and the courgette plant that sprouts fruit like crazy. Only the tomatoes are a write-off but that’s no surprise. Oh well – I’ll be cooking plenty of green tomato salsa for my enchiladas.

Time then for some recipes! If you grow or get hold of rainbow beetroots, make this lovely herby raw beetroot salad. You can use the standard beets for it but make sure they are young and small. Save the leaves – beetroot leaves can be cooked just like spinach or made into a topping for a beet leaf tart.

With lots of spinach it must be spanakopita, the Greek filo pie. As a side dish, simple buttered spinach takes some beating.

Carrots can be eaten raw, as in zingy carrots, or cooked: like the fondant carrots. I honestly don’t know which I like better.

Green beans are a good combo with tomatoes, and runner beans with garlic, or added to grains and salads like the bulgur wheat salad with beans and chorizo. And you must try the Persian rice with broad beans if you have plenty of them.

We’re eating lots of potatoes too in various forms: crushed new potatoes, smashed roasties, with spicy bacon and cucumber or with leeks, in a creamy bake. There is almost no need for any meat but considering mackerel and sprats are summer fish, we should eat plenty of those.

I’ll be making either double decker cherry cake or peach pound cake this week, haven’t decided which yet. Maybe both? Stay well and eat the season!

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Hello! I'm Anna Gaze, the Cuisine Fiend. Welcome to my recipe collection.

I have lots of recipes for you to choose from: healthy or indulgent, easy or more challenging, quick or involved - but always tasty.


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