I am a major fan of this pretty pink cocktail. It was very light, refreshing, and minimally sweet. Puréed watermelon is the only source of sweetness. Perfect.
This recipe was adapted from 3-Ingredient Cocktails by Robert Simonson, via The New York Times. I did not strain the puréed watermelon and omitted the jalapeño slices. We tried it with both the cayenne and salt on the rim, and salt alone. Both were delicious. 😉
The original recipe recommends to taste and add more watermelon juice if your margarita is too boozy, and extra lime juice or even a pinch of salt if it’s too sweet.
Yield: 2 drinks
For the (optional) Salted Rim:
1tablespoon coarse salt or fine sea salt
1teaspoon Tajín or 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne (optional)
For the Cocktail:
ice, as needed
6ounces fresh watermelon juice (from about 1 1/2 cups chopped seedless watermelon)(I used cubes from a mini watermelon)
2ounces tequila, preferably blanco
2ounces fresh lime juice (from 1 to 2 large limes), rinds reserved (I used 1 1/2 limes)
2 to 3thinly sliced jalapeño rounds, optional
small slices of watermelon, for garnish, optional
Prepare the salted rim, if using: In a small shallow bowl or plate, combine the sea salt and Tajín or cayenne. Set aside.
Blend the watermelon in a Vitamix or blender; strain if desired. (I left it puréed.)
In a shaker filled with ice, combine the watermelon juice, tequila, Cointreau, lime juice and jalapeño (if using). Shake to combine. (Note: The watermelon flavor shines brighter without the Cointreau, but the liqueur takes the drink into more traditional margarita territory. If you’d like to compare, first try the mixture without, the liqueur, then add 1 ounce of it per serving.)
Using one of the squeezed lime halves, run it along the rim of two margarita or rocks glasses, then dip the rims into the salt mixture.
Fill the glasses with ice, then strain the margaritas into the glasses. Garnish with additional jalapeño slices and/or watermelon slices. Enjoy immediately.
This was the first thing we made with our freshly picked Long Island strawberries. In fact, I enjoyed it the day that we picked them. 🙂 It was jammy and absolutely fabulous.
The recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by José Zepeda. The sweetness can be easily adjusted by decreasing the amount of agave or simple syrup. It was a warm evening, so we served it over ice. Perfect.
Yield: 1 drink
3 strawberries, plus thin slices for garnish
3 basil leaves, plus more for garnish
1/2 ounce simple syrup or agave nectar
1 ounce gin
1 ounce vodka
1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
In a cocktail shaker, muddle the strawberries with the basil leaves and simple syrup or agave nectar.
Add ice and the remaining ingredients and shake well.
Strain into a chilled martini glass and garnish with strawberry slices and basil, as desired.
This is another Mexican-inspired chicken dish. I coarsely hand-shredded this juicy chicken to serve as a taco filling with loads of toppings. It would also be wonderful in a burrito bowl or simply on it’s own with street corn, refried beans and rice. Yum.
The recipe was adapted from DamnDelicious.com. I marinated the chicken for 6 hours and it was very flavorful. I broiled the chicken instead of pan frying it as well. It would also be perfect grilled.
I have a few bar desserts to share. Great for a crowd, party or pot luck event. I have made all of these desserts on more than one occasion! Quite an endorsement. 🙂
These tart, tangy, and sweet bars were fabulous- the crust was absolute perfection. I made them off-season and used bottled Key lime juice. They are a must try with fresh Key lime juice! Fresh Key lime slices would also be a lovely garnish.
This recipe was adapted from the Key lime pie from Joe’s Stone Crab in Miami Beach, via Martha Stewart Living.
Yield: 16 bars
1 cup plus 2 1/2 tablespoons finely ground graham cracker crumbs (8 full cracker sheets)
1/3 cup granulated sugar
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
3 large egg yolks
finely grated zest of 1 lime (about 1 1/2 tsp)
2/3 cup fresh or bottled Key lime juice (about 23 Key limes total)
1 can sweetened condensed milk (14 ounces)
1/4 cup heavy cream, for garnish, optional
2 Key limes, thinly sliced into half-moons, for garnish, optional
confectioner’s sugar, for garnish, optional
Make crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees, preferably on convection. Line a 8-inch square, or equivalent, baking dish with parchment paper, letting it hang over 2 sides.
Using a food processor, pulse graham crackers into fine crumbs.
Stir together graham cracker crumbs, sugar, and butter in a small bowl. Press evenly onto bottom of the prepared baking dish. (I used the bottom of a dry measuring cup.)
Bake until dry and golden brown, about 10 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack. (Leave oven on.)
Make filling: Put egg yolks and lime zest in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Mix on high speed until very thick, about 5 minutes.
Reduce speed to medium. Add condensed milk in a slow, steady stream, mixing constantly. Raise speed to high; mix until thick, about 3 minutes.
Reduce speed to low. Add lime juice; mix until just combined.
Spread filling evenly over crust using a spatula.
Bake, rotating dish halfway through, until filling is just set, about 10 minutes.
Let cool completely on a wire rack. Refrigerate at least 4 hours (or overnight).
Cut into 2-by-2-inch bars.
Put cream in the clean bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the clean whisk attachment. Mix on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form. Garnish bars with confectioner’s sugar, whipped cream, and/or a slice of lime, as desired.
Note: The bars will keep, wrapped in plastic, in the refrigerator for up to three days.
I typically enjoy our amazing Long Island summer corn simply on the cob after boiling it for two minutes in salted water. No butter, no extra salt. It’s perfect. 🙂 But, I must admit that both of these dishes brought sweet corn to another level and were absolute crowd-pleasers.
The first dish, pictured above, is Ina Garten’s Chipotle Parmesan Sweet Corn. It was buttery and indulgent. We ate it as a side with grilled chicken. The second dish, photo below, is Mexican-Style Corn with Citrus Cream. I served it on a separate occasion as an appetizer with tortilla chips.
The Chipotle Parmesan Sweet Corn Recipe is from Ina Garten’s Cook Like a Pro: Recipes and Tips for Home Cooks via barefoot contessa.com. The Mexican-Style Corn with Citrus Cream recipe was adapted from Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food. The street corn had more of a spicy kick compared to the buttery chipotle corn.
Ina Garten’s Chipotle Parmesan Sweet Corn
Yield: Serves 6 to 8 as a side dish
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup shallots, halved lengthwise, peeled, and thinly sliced crosswise (3 large shallots)
8 cups white or yellow corn kernels (8 to 12 ears) (I used 9)
1/4 tsp chipotle chile powder
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
freshly squeezed lime juice from 1 lime (about 2 T)
1 T freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
Standing the cob upright inside the center of a medium to large shallow bowl, cut the corn kernels off of the cobs. (This prevents the kernels from scattering all over the counter.)
Heat the butter in a large (12-inch) sauté pan over medium heat. Once melted, add the shallots and cook for about 5 minutes, until tender and fragrant.
Add the corn, chipotle powder, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper.
Raise the heat to medium high and cook for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally to allow the corn to brown lightly, until the corn is tender but still firm.
Off the heat, stir in the lime juice and Parmesan.
Taste for seasonings and transfer to a large shallow serving bowl. Serve hot.
Martha Stewart’s Mexican-Style Corn with Citrus Cream
Yield: Serves 4 to 6 as an appetizer
8 ears corn, husked and silks removed
1/2 cup light sour cream
1 T fresh lime juice
pinch or two cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 cup minced cilantro, or more, to taste
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup crumbled cotija or goat cheese
tortilla chips, for serving
Heat a grill or grill pan over medium-high. Clean and lightly oil the hot grill.
Grill the husked corn cobs, turning occasionally, until kernels are tender and charred in spots, about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine sour cream, lime juice, cayenne, chili powder, and cilantro in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
Cut off the tips of the grilled corn cobs and stand in a wide, shallow bowl. Using a sharp knife, cut the kernels off the cobs.
Combine the corn kernels with the sour cream mixture.
To serve, top with the crumbled goat cheese. Serve with tortilla chips for dipping, as desired.
Note: This dish can be served warm or at room temperature
My husband and I went strawberry picking without the kids this year. I’m so happy that he loves freshly picked strawberries enough to harvest them. 🙂 We brought home nine quarts!
My list of “must make” strawberry recipes seems to keep expanding, so I was lucky enough to have plenty of berries to fulfill the list (links below) and make one new dessert- this delicious galette. I loved the graham cracker crust.
This recipe is from Bon Appétit, contributed by Claire Saffitz. We ate it with vanilla ice cream instead of the lime-flavored whipped cream. Wonderful!
Yield: 8 servings
7 graham crackers (about 3.7 ounces)
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
⅔ cup all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
5 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
2 large eggs
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted, cooled, & divided (I melted 6 T and 2 T separately)
1 pound strawberries, hulled & sliced
1 lime, zested & juiced, divided
½ cup very cold heavy cream, optional
vanilla ice cream, for serving, optional
Place a rack in bottom third of oven; preheat to 350°, preferably on convection.
Place graham crackers in a large resealable plastic bag and zip it up, pressing out most of the air. Using a rolling pin, firmly roll over crackers several times, crushing them into fine crumbs (some larger crumbs are okay).
Measure out 1 cup crumbs (which should be almost all of them) and transfer to a medium bowl. Add salt, ⅔ cup flour, and 2 T sugar. Mix with a fork to combine.
Add 1 egg and 6 T melted butter.
Mix with fork until dough forms, then knead with your hands inside of bowl until no floury spots remain and dough is smooth. It’ll be a little soft and slightly oily.
Lightly flour a piece of parchment paper and place dough on top. Lightly flour top of dough, then cover with another piece of parchment or plastic wrap.
Using a rolling pin, roll dough into a round (it doesn’t have to be perfect!) about 12″ in diameter and ⅛” thick. (I used this amazing rolling pin that creates an 1/8″ thick crust.)
Slide entire sheet of parchment paper onto a rimmed baking sheet. Remove the top layer or plastic wrap or parchment paper.
Sprinkle 1 T sugar over surface of dough, leaving about a 2″ border.
Pile strawberries into center of dough and arrange in an even layer, leaving the same 2″ border.
Sprinkle strawberries with 1 T sugar and drizzle with remaining 2 T butter.
Using a microplane or fine grater, grate zest of about one-half of lime over strawberries.
Cut off half of lime with no zest and squeeze juice over strawberries. Save the other half for later, if making the whipped cream topping.
Beat remaining egg in a small bowl with fork until no streaks remain. Brush egg wash around border of pastry (you won’t use it all). Using edges of parchment to help lift, fold empty border of dough up and over strawberries, working your way around in roughly 2″ sections, overlapping folds as needed. Press all the way around to secure folds and keep dough in place. It might crack or tear in places, just pinch it back together.
Brush top of border with remaining egg wash and sprinkle with remaining 1 T sugar.
Bake galette until crust is browned around the edges and juices from strawberries are syrupy and actively bubbling, 40–45 minutes. If some juices escape and end up on the parchment paper, the parchment will prevent the tart from sticking.
Let cool at least 20 minutes.
For the Optional Whipped Cream Topping: Beat cream with a large whisk in a medium bowl until voluminous, thick, and starts to hold tracks of whisk. Hold whisk upright and look for the “peak” of cream that forms on the end. It should droop and slump over- making “soft peaks.”
Grate zest from remaining half of lime over cream and serve with tart.
Do Ahead: Tart can be made several hours ahead. Let sit at room temperature. Once fully cooled, droop a piece of plastic over top. (I kept the leftover slices in the refrigerator.)
Essential Freshly Picked Strawberry Recipes (in my house):