summer supper

School is out, and summer weather is here!  While I enjoy having more time with the kids in the summer, it does make cooking a little more challenging…at least finding the time to cook.  A lot of our meals are done on the grill (P handles that), while I take care of the side dishes in the kitchen.

Sometimes, especially on those really warm days, we don’t want to eat anything too heavy.  Here is a summer supper idea that can be prepared quickly, AND it is light and tasty.

Gazpacho and Sweet Corn Zucchini Pie

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

Gazpacho is such a great meal option for summer…cool, healthy, and great-tasting.  You can pair it with a salad, serve it as the entree for a light supper, or have it accompany a steak from the grill for a heartier meal.

Summer is the perfect time to make gazpacho, as all the vegetables are in season.  It tastes so fresh…you can smell the freshness as the vegetables are chopped!

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

Gazpacho

1 cucumber (cut and seeded, not peeled)

2 red bell peppers (cored and seeded)

4 tomatoes

1 red onion

3 garlic cloves, minced

3 cups tomato juice

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

1/4 cup olive oil

1/2 tablespoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

Chop the cucumber, red peppers, tomatoes, and red onions into small cubes.  Put each vegetable into a food processor and pulse until it is coarsely chopped.  Do not overprocess, or it will be too thin.  Do this separately with each vegetable.

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

After each vegetable is chopped, combine them in a large bowl.  Add the garlic, tomato juice, white wine vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper.  Mix well and chill before serving.

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

One of the reasons I like to make gazpacho is that I can do it in the morning before we head off to the pool for the day.  It actually tastes better the longer it chills.  The flavors mesh together.  Then, all I need to do is make the accompaniment for dinner when we return home from our day’s activities.

Sweet Corn Zucchini Pie

4 tablespoons butter

1 onion, diced

2 cups frozen corn (or fresh from the cob)

2 large zucchini, sliced thin

1 tablespoon dried basil

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon salt

12 ounces shredded cheese (mozzarella and Swiss)

3 eggs, beaten

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Heat the butter in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add the onions, zucchini, and corn.  Saute the veggies until they are soft, about 5-10 minutes.

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

Add the basil, oregano, and salt.  Stir together to combine.  Add the cheese and the beaten eggs.  Line a 9 inch pie pan with parchment paper, and pour the mixture into the pan.  Arrange the top so that the zucchini pieces lay flat on top.  Top it with a little extra cheese.  Cover it with foil and bake for 20 minutes.  Remove the foil and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes to brown the top.  Let it cool for 10 minutes before cutting into slices.

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

When it is time to serve dinner, I add a dollop of sour cream and a fresh basil leaf (from my herb garden) to each bowl of gazpacho.  It looks pretty and it adds to the flavor.

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

summer supper | polka dots and picket fences

The best part of this meal…the leftovers, so we can have it again!

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