As I review the lists of various foods one can use for celebrating the Summer Solstice, I began to get some ideas in my head about different dishes one could make with such. Some of these dishes are ones that I myself have either cooked or eaten at different summer gatherings over the past several years. Others are ideas that came to my mind as I was writing the article, or which come out of my files or various cookbooks.
Below is a list of possible dishes
Oven Roasted Garlic to spread on crackers or bread
Fried Squash Blossoms
Herbed Cream Cheese Spread
Bruschetta topped with various vegetables such as tomatoes or peppers
Salsa with chips
Tossed Green Salad
Spinach and Strawberry Salad
Salad Dressings made with herbs
Fresh Pea Soup
Fresh Vegetable Soup
Pasta dishes such as lasagna, fettucini alfredo (you can add chicken or shrimp), ravioli, spaghetti or linguini
Mexican dishes such as enchiladas, tacos, tostadas, or fajitas
Cajun and Creole dishes such as jambalaya or gumbo
Spicy Asian dishes that use hot peppers, garlic, curry, etc.
Asian dishes that use lemongrass
Quiches and Savory Pies/Tarts
Pizza (how about making your own – maybe even on the grill?)
This is a good time for trying out that Beer-Can Chicken recipe on the grill!
Grilled Salmon or other fish
Seafood such as lobster, shrimp, etc.
If you’re a fisherman, how about a fish fry (gotta catch the fish first, of course!)
I once attended a clambake for Summer Solstice – it was lots of fun and delicious!
Fried or Grilled Squash
Fresh Green Beans or Lima Beans
Sweet Corn – on the cob, off the cob, creamed
Rice and Beans
Herb Breads (rosemary in particular is good for Summer Solstice)
Scones made with herbs, lemon, strawberries, etc.
Gingerbread or Spice Cake or Carrot Cake
Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
Strawberry Pie or Shortcake
Ale or Beer
Mixed Drinks made with mint, lemon/citrus, peach schnapps, strawberries, etc.
Lemonade (regular, strawberry lemonade, mint lemonade, raspberry lemonade, etc.)
Iced Tea (black tea, herbal tea, mint tea, chamomile tea, etc.)
These are only suggestions, I am sure that you can come up with other ideas! The main thing is to think about using the ingredients that I listed in my previous post – such as honey, lemon, garlic, chilies, herbs, spices, etc. In addition, use those ingredients which you can find fresh from your area – go to local Farmer’s Markets or roadside stands and check out what they have to offer. This is a time for honoring the bounty of the earth and the gift of the sun, so what better way than to cook with fresh produce from your own garden or from farms around you?
And most importantly, cook with love. Have fun while you are cooking. See it as a celebration, not as a chore. Share your food with the people you care about.
I’ll try to post some of my favorite Summer Solstice recipes for you. You might want to check out some of my recipes I have already posted here at the Crossroads, which you can find under the Food category in the menu bar at the right.
Enjoy your Summer!