If you have ever been to Mississippi, you know that us southern folks love our sweets! I grew up living next door to my grandmother and I was always running barefoot over to her house to see what tasty treats she was whipping up. My two favorites were peach cobbler and pound cake. Now that I live in Ohio, I love sharing southern favorites with my northern friends and family.
Even though my garden herbs are still thriving, I know the days are getting shorter and it will be cold before we know it! Depending on where you live and what herbs you have, some may keep a pep in their step longer or even all through winter.
This has really been the summer of all things basil! Luckily, my fiancé LOVES it and just cannot get enough. Basil gin cocktails with mint and cucumbers, pesto, caprese creations, basil scrambled eggs... and of course, quinoa concoctions! There are so many tasty varieties of quinoa salads out there, but I threw this one together with what I had on hand and wasn't disappointed.
Peachy Keen Summer Quinoa
- Fresh sliced peaches
- Fresh chopped basil
- Lemon juice
- Sliced cherry tomatoes
- Feta crumbles
- Cooked quinoa
- Sea salt
- Black pepper
My blueberry and sun gold heirloom cherry tomatoes have been showing out this summer so I have been throwing them in everything, but this salad could hold it's own without them as well. Peach season is almost over, but they are still all over the farmers' markets of Ohio and they added a heavenly sweetness while the feta gave a nice contrast to the mix.
Use your own judgment on ingredient portions depending on your preference for each flavor. I used about 1 1/2 cups of red quinoa, 1 1/2 cups white quinoa, 1 1/2 cups sliced peaches, 1 cup sliced tomatoes, 3/4 cup basil, juice from 1 lemon, 1/2 cup feta crumbles, 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt, and a couple dashes of cayenne and black pepper.
This salad is great for anything... snacking, side item, or topped with a protein such as grilled chicken or salmon. We enjoyed it with salmon and a glass of white wine. Perfect summer combination! (Shout out to my sister Liv for naming this dish!)
Even though having the convenience of finding online recipe ideas in a flash is amazing, I still love my food and garden magazines! Since I am originally from the south, Southern Living is my go to. However, I stumbled across this idea for a Caprese burger in a copy of Allrecipes.
Around this time of year, my basil plants start trying to flower and go to seed. When basil starts to flower, the plant will focus its energy on the blooms, leaving the leaves looking puny and lacking essential oils. Pinching off the flowers and pruning will help generate foliage growth. Pruning basil means that it is time for pesto!
I am a huge fan of pickles - all the pickled things! They store easily in the pantry or fridge after opening and they are ready for any snacking event or food pairing. Showcasing your work is fun and rewarding, so what better way to do that than on a cheese board!