Ah, the pleasures of the summer menu. Cold watermelon. Juicy peaches. Vine ripe tomatoes. Wild berries. Vegetable salads. Fruit cobblers. Corn on the cob. The smell of hickory chips toasting on the grill. At the farm this past weekend, we had a chance to savor it all.
A meal at the farm always “takes a village” of preparation. Below, a neighbor helps arrange the Zucchini Rounds on a tray. They were lightly oiled, seasoned with salt and pepper, and topped with freshly, grated parmesan cheese before going into the oven to be roasted. I served them with a tzatziki sauce—the grated cucumber-yogurt dip you see in Greek restaurants.
I intended for the Zucchini Rounds to be a side dish, but everyone started eating them before dinner. Come to think of it, they’re more appropriate for an appetizer and that’s the way I’ll serve them from now on.
The Tzatziki Sauce also made a fine dip for the roasted Yukon potatoes. I sped up the cooking time for the potatoes by parboiling them for about 5 minutes. I patted them dry and added a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper, a couple of minced garlic cloves, chives, and parsley. I placed the potatoes on a baking sheet with space between (crowding causes them to steam) and roasted the spuds for 30 minutes at 425 degrees.
I’m not a great fan of cherry tomatoes, but my family is. I prefer the large beefsteak variety or the pinks that take only one slice to cover a BLT sandwich. Tomato Caprese, shown above, features buffalo mozzarella and fresh basil and is served with a balsamic vinaigrette.
This was our first attempt at serving a mixed seafood grill, a medley enhanced with the addition of olive oil, lemon slices and juice, scallions, and sprigs of tarragon and parsley. I got the shrimp, scallops, and tilapia at Bob’s Seafood and it was superb.
Cooking the seafood should have taken just several minutes on each side, but our makeshift basket was overloaded, which added to the time. With the right grill basket, cooking should be a breeze.
In deference to the diet conscious, I didn’t serve a side of lemon-garlic butter, but that would have been a nice touch.
It was a fun weekend, but a very hot one. Even the birds paused for a rest in the shade of a tree.