Thursday, July 28, 2011

Simple Summer Feasts of Produce

Summer in the Midwest means a much larger variety of fresh local produce is available, so why not make a simple feast of it from time to time? 

I often start out with a theme, such as Italian, Spanish, Mexican or Mediterranean styles of cooking, but I have been know to take an eclectic or even fusion approach to the meal, depending on what fresh food is available.  After all, the whole idea is to have fun and enjoy the fresh produce, so what sense is there in becoming to rigid, right?  
Anyway, on this occasion, we decided on a Mexican style meal, and we had to pick up a few items to go with the produce on hand, and complete the meal.  Local Wisconsin produce shown above included the T-Farm tomatoes and basil, a friends hot peppers, and local sweet corn.  The cheddar was also a local product.  Adding a can of black beans, a couple limes, an avocado, an onion, a couple cloves of garlic and some corn taco shells completed the ingredients necessary for our afternoon feast. 
The sweet corn was the easiest to prepare.  We steamed it for 11 minutes and ate with butter and coarse salt and it was quite good.

Next, we prepared the Insalata Caprese salad (not at all Mexican, but quite delicious)  which used some of the tomatoes sliced, with basil and balsamic vinegar drizzled on top. 
Then it was time to assemble and prep cook all of the ingredients for the Mexican  cuisine inspired portion of the meal.  I must say, just placing these ingredients together on the counter was a feast for the eyes as you can judge for yourself in this photo shown below.

The tomatoes, lime and peppers were used to make a simple salsa, though cilantro would have been added if we had some on hand.

The black beans were heated, and thick wedges of tomatoes and avacados were cut and part of the red onion was diced.  A simple quacamole was created by chopping 1/2 of the avacado, and a clove of garlic along with the juice of 1/2 a lime. The cheese was grated and the taco shells were heated in the toaster oven for a couple minutes, making the feast ready to eat.  It was the perfect meal for a hot summer day in Wisconsin.  Two of my tastey, finished tacos can be seen  below.

1 comment:

  1. This meal was amazing. I kept thinking about it the whole way home to Tennessee and even attempted to recreate it once I got home. Absolutely delish. Nothing like a meal with fresh ingredients.