Summer Recipes from AARP Maine Staff and Volunteers
There are a few things which are certain now that summer is here: Your kitchen will feel too hot to cook in at least once this summer, you will host or attend more barbecues, and you’ll need to come up with more vegetable dishes to go with your burgers and grilled chicken! Instead of sticking to your tried and true recipes, AARP Maine staff and volunteers are proud to present a few suggestions that should please every palate!
Indian Curried Cheese Ball
Submitted by Ilene Knight
Sr. Operations Administrator
1-8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup cooked chicken, cut into small pieces
1 cup toasted slivered almonds
2 tablespoons chutney
1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons curry
Coconut, parsley or chopped nuts (optional)
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Form into a ball and then chill. Roll in coconut, parsley, or chopped nuts. Serve with crackers.
Spinach & Feta Summer Salad
Submitted by Lori Parham
1 bag baby spinach, roughly chopped
1 pint grape tomatoes sliced in half
¼ cup chopped scallions
1-15 ounce can garbanzo beans drained and rinsed
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
½ lemon, juiced
¼ cup white balsamic vinegar
½ cup olive oil
Salt & Pepper to taste
Combine tomatoes, green onions, garbanzo beans and spinach. Place in a large bowl. Mix the lemon juice, vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Pour the dressing on top; toss to combine. Add feta and toss lightly. Best served at room temperature.
Curried Zucchini Soup
Submitted by Erica Magnus
2 Tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 heaping tablespoon curry powder
2 ½ pounds zucchini, sliced 1 inch thick
1 medium white or yellow potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
1 Splenda packet (or other sweetener)
1 big squeeze of lemon
5 cups of water
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and 1 tablespoon salt. Cook 4-5 minutes stirring occasionally until the onion is soft. Add garlic and curry powder; cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant—about 1 minute.
Add zucchini, potato and 5 cups water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are tender, 10-15 minutes.
Puree soup with hand blender until smooth. Add one packet of Splenda (or the equivalent amount of sugar) and one big squeeze of lemon. Garnish beautifully with heavy cream, sriracha sauce (if you like it spicy!) and fresh chives. Serve immediately. Good hot or cold.
One Bowl, All Natural, No-Bake Energy Bites
Submitted by Erin Mancini
½ cup nut butter (anything will work)
1/3 cup honey
1 cup old fashioned rolled oats (You can toast for a nuttier flavor at 350 for about 10 minutes)
1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut (you can substitute any dry ingredient for this such as wheat bran or germ, oat bran, some ground flax seed or any other kind of ground nuts or seeds)
1-2 teaspoons vanilla
Pinch of sea salt
1-2 teaspoon your favorite spice or spices
½ cup any other add-ins
In a large bowl add the nut butter, honey, vanilla and salt. If all your ingredients are room temperature you should be able to stir to combine. Once combined, add other ingredients. Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes. Once the batter is chilled, scoop out the dough and roll into a ball. If they are too sticky, add additional dry ingredients. Place the balls in an airtight container either in the fridge or freezer for quick and easy snack.
Submitted by Sarah Mears
1 large cucumber
1-8 ounce container sour cream
3 tablespoons sugar
3 tablespoons white vinegar
Pepper to taste
Peel and seed the cucumber then slice into half inch slices. Mix the sour cream, sugar, vinegar and pepper. Place the cucumber slices into the sour cream mixture; toss to coat. Serve right away or chill until ready to use.
Photo credit iStock.