Suggestions from items sold at the Market:

Watermelon, Basil, and Mozerella Salad

4 cups watermelon cubes (about 1-inch), seeds removed

1 pound shredded mozerella

2 tablespoons fresh basil, minced

2 cups balsamic vinegar (Cooked down to syrup-like consistency and cooled)

salt and pepper to taste

Mix all these ingredients together and pour the thickened balsamic vinegar over

Blue Potato/Blue Cheese Salad

1 pound medium blue potatoes

1 large bunch of radishes

1/2 diced large sweet onion

1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

You can either peel or leave the skin on the potatoes to your liking. Boil until they can be easily pricked with a fork tine. Remove and drench in a colander with cold water. Cut into bite-sized pieces.Rough dice the radishes and sweet onion and add to the potatoes. Crumble in blue cheese. Fold in mayonnaise gently. Salt and pepper to taste.

Summertime Provençal Soup

Take a mixture of the lovely vegetables found at the farmers market, i.e. potatoes (peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces, green beans (cut into bite-sized pieces), corn (blanched on the cob for three minutes, plunged into cold water for a bit and cut from the cob), onions (roughly diced), sweet pepper (roughly diced), okra (sliced into bite-sized pieces), zucchini and summer squash (peeled, seeded, and cut into bite-sized pieces) and tomatoes (cored, peeled, and cut into bite-sized pieces).

In a large cooking pot, add 2 T. olive oil. Cook the diced onions for about 5 minutes on medium heat until they start to soften. Add 1t. garlic powder. Then add 6 cups of chicken broth. Add the potatoes, green beans, corn, sweet pepper, okra, and tomatoes. You might also want to add a diced carrot, diced celery stalk, and some navy beans (either soaked or canned).  Let simmer for 60-90 minutes, checking from time to time for doneness. Simmer low and slow and let all the flavors meld together. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

As a GREAT treat to add to the soup, take 1/2 c. fresh basil leaves (or around 2T. dried basil), 4T. grated parmigiano reggiano, 4T. olive oil and either 1 clove of garlic chopped, or 1/2t. garlic powder. Cut the basil leaves into halves or quarters and add everything to a food processor until well blended. Add a heaping tablespoon to each bowl of soup.

Basil Tomato and Onion Salad

1/4 c. extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 t. balsamic vinegar

1/2 t. salt

1/4 t. sugar

1/4 t. pepper

Whisk all the above ingredients together

Thinly slice 4 large tomatoes and 1 medium sweet onion and arrange on a plate

Finely chop 1/4 c. basil

Pour the dressing over the tomatoes, onion, and basil. Let stand at room temperature for at least 2 hours.

Serve with a slotted spoon. (Or grab some good focaccia bread to sop up the great juices!)

Fresh Garden Tomato Soup

1T. olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

3 cups tomatoes, cored and quartered (no need to peel)

1 carrot, chopped

1/2 t. garlic powder

1/4 t. dried thyme

1/4 t. dried marjoram

1 bay leaf

salt and pepper to taste

sour cream

Add the onion and carrot to the warmed olive oil and saute until just soft. Add the tomatoes, garlic, thyme, and marjoram along with a bit of salt and pepper. Toss in the bay leaf. Simmer for at least 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaf. Allow to cool a bit and then put into a blender or a food mill. Once everything is blended smoothly, serve with a dollop of sour cream on top. This soup can be served warm or cool. Enjoy!

Cantaloupe Soup

1 cantaloupe

1 1/2-2 c. orange juice

1/2 t. cinnamon

1/8 t. nutmeg

1 T. lime juice

Peel, seed, and coarsely chop the cantaloupe and put into a blender with the spices, lime juice, and 1/2 and orange juice. Blend and add the reminder of the orange juice. Chill in the fridge until you’re ready to serve. Tastes great on these incredibly hot days!


Zucchini Jelly

(makes 8-1/2 pints)

6 c. peeled, seeded, and grated zucchini

5 c. sugar

1/4 c. lemon juice

19 oz. can of crushed pineapple (drained)

2 small packages peach Jello-o

Place zucchini and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil; boil for 6 minutes.

Add lemon juice and pineapple to zucchini and sugar; boil for another 6 minutes.

Remove from heat–add 2 packages of Jell-o

Stir well. Pour into sterilized jars and seal tightly.

Store in a cool, dry place.


 Easy Zucchini al fresco

(serves 4 as a side dish)

2 zucchini–split, and seeded

1 package plum tomatoes

1 onion,  roughly chopped

1/4 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 green bell pepper, roughly chopped

2 T. grated Parmesan cheese

2 T. olive oil

salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients together and let chill for at least 2 hours. If you like more intense flavor, add 1 T. pesto.


Red Raspberries and Dark Chocolate with Red Raspberry Sauce

(serves 4)

1 bar good quality dark chocolate-quartered

1 quart+ 1 pint red raspberries

 2 T. sugar

Cook the pint of raspberries over low heat with 2 T. sugar. (If you prefer, use red raspberry jam and heat it over low heat until in a more liquid state. Take four small bowls and divide up the quart of red raspberries. Take the 1/4 of the chocolate bar and tuck in the bowl. Pour the cooled, yet still liquefied red raspberry sauce over the raspberries. (Optional–shave a bit of dark chocolate on top of the raspberries. Add whipped cream if desired.)


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