Summer peas

Weekend links and photos #EatSeasonal July edition

We’re busy rounding up bathing suits, walking shoes, colouring books and airplane snacks as we leave tomorrow for a quick trip to Prince Edward Island.

We’re excited for red beaches, lobster, lighthouses and of course, the home of our beloved Anne-girl. Follow along with our Gentle Island adventures on Instagram! Reception may be in and out, as we intend to explore the rural areas as well as the popular spots, but I’ll be posting photos when I can.

Here’s the #EatSeasonal recipe round-up for July:

And here are a few of my  favourite photos from recent happenings and eats.

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A garden inspired picnic

A garden inspired picnic

I‘m currently running around trying to pack for a little family getaway to Prince Edward Island, but I have a recipe up over on Jamie Oliver you won’t want to miss.

It’s a spontaneous snacking weeknight supper that tuned into a little garden-inspired picnic. I brought outside for us to nibble on while we wound down from the day. The children buzzed around barefoot on the lawn, chasing chickens, while I walked Danny through a garden tour and we got caught up on our respective days.

It turned out to be one of my favourite meals from the week, and one I plan to reproduce several more times before the summer is over.

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Salted Cantaloupe Honey Sorbet | Simple Bites

Coming together over Cantaloupe Honey Sorbet

This post is sponsored by KitchenAid Canada.

Melons are a summer fruit we can all agree to like in my little family. Believe it or not, I have one boy who despises berries of all kinds and another boy who will have nothing to do with stone fruits. Melon, however, disappears as fast as I can cut it into wedges.

I’m trying to be patient with these peculiar tastes of my children, even though I’m yearning to make summer berry crisps and peach cobblers a part of our regular dessert line-up. (And sometimes I do, just for Danny and I.) Clara, on the other hand, eats all fruits, and all vegetables, for that matter. Can I attribute this to baby-led weaning? Partially, I am sure.

Taste buds can change – I’ve seen it happen – and I am confident the boys will eventually grow out of this picky phase. They heartily enjoy foods like beans, lentils, olives, avocado, seafood, and salads, so I have that to be thankful for.

For now, we’ll come together over cantaloupe, sticky our fingers with watermelon and hang out over a plate of honeydew on hot summer days. This sorbet is a perfect example of that happening.

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A Garden Tour | Simple Bites

A garden tour

Alive. Thriving and alive is what I see when I look out over my garden. It may be a tad unkept and it may be behind other plots in comparison, but considering it was completely devastated during a storm last July, I only feel gratefulness for what I have this summer.

Let’s take a tour, shall we? It changes so fast. Every time I pay a visit after a particularly hot day I notice the plants pushing higher, reaching further. Buds open after a good overnight rain and the fruit grows even bigger. These photos were taken over a week ago, and already there are changes. Considering we grew most of the garden from these seedlings, it’s a small miracle everything survived and thrived!

The lessons learned from gardening are numerous and change also happens from year to year as we learn from our mistakes.

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Early Summer Risotto with New Garden Vegetable & Herbs : Simple Bites #recipe

Early Summer Risotto with New Garden Vegetables

I can’t quite remember when risotto went from being a favourite menu item when dining out to a weeknight staple around our table; a go-to comfort food that changed with the produce brought by each new season.

It may have been when my Italian culinary school chef tutored my class on the art of the risotto, instructing us never to rush the dish or the rice would guess our haste and become gummy rather than creamy. Perhaps I became less intimidated to cook the classic dish after testing it out frequently on Danny when we were newlyweds.

At any rate, I eventually discovered that the cheesy rice dish was an indispensable vehicle for getting my children to eat vegetables. Ever since, I’ve seldom been without the basic ingredients for risotto: chicken or vegetable stock in the freezer, butter and Parmesan cheese in the fridge, rice and onions in the pantry.

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