Quick summer salads and sandwiches by Ilene

I’m a busy farmer and mom, I don’t spend a ton of time preparing dishes. I spent today harvesting onions and then needed a potluck dish to go. I spent five minutes and chopped a cabbage, some parsley, some green peppers, tossed in some white sesame seeds and some vinagrette dressing, grabbed the kids and we were out the door. I laughed when the cole slaw got rave reviews, “Ilene, you have to share this recipe.” I wanted to say, OK, first you need to grow a really good cabbage from seed, plant it out with love, raise it organically and close to home, wait for it to ripen, harvest. Add it with other random veggies ready in the garden, toss with dressing, and you are good to go. That’s pretty much the secret recipe.

The veggies shine on their own and my family tends to eat “whole foods”, quite literally, sliced and raw or combined simply. Here are some of my favorite summertime combinations, they are five minute salads and sandwiches, the veggies are the stars:

pesto and sliced tomato grill cheese sandwiches

hummus dip with scallions and garlic blended into it–dip with slices of green pepper or cucumber..or spread the hummus on a piece of bread with a slice of tomato, oh my! its my picnic lunch fave these days, and the heirloom tomato slice makes it

sautee scallions and garlic and thin discs of japanese eggplant and peppers until eggplant is soft, include a splash of soy sauce, add last a handful of thai basil and simmer til it wilts like spinach…so yummy…add chicken or asian noodles if you wish

five minute farm slaw: chop cabbage, dump vinagrette salad dressing over it (could just be balsalmic and olive oil and chopped basil), add sesame seeds, scallions, shredded carrots, thinly sliced peppers, a little salt

change farm slaw to tomato-cucumber salad–chop tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers in bigger pieces than slaw, include same dressing. Add chopped sweet basil.

On my to-do list are these two:

fresh salsa

gazpacho–or I’ll just go to the Common Market Cafe and eat theirs, they are making gazpacho with our heirloom tomatoes and I’m hearing rave reviews.

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