We made it to Summer 2022!
With the sounds of ice cream trucks coming down the street, children giggling in the playground, and the breeze being the perfect about of crisp and refreshing, we can finally say it’s summertime. Though a short-lived season, it is one full of vacations, fun, and sun, with one of the best things about this time of year being the foods we enjoy. I don’t know about you, but summer eats is my favorite thing to indulge in – there are just certain things that can only be properly enjoyed in the summer and I’m glad we’re here to enjoy them!
However, though I am a huge advocate for enjoying funnel cake with dollops of vanilla ice cream and powdered sugar on top – which I actually just had a week ago – I’m also ensuring that I’m giving my body what it needs and not just what I want. Of course, I’ll never turn away from a funnel cake, but this summer I became much more intentional with what I’m putting in my body. I’m choosing meals and snacks that make me feel good from the inside to the out, keeping my mind, body, and soul in balance and at their highest capacity.
So, what foods have I been eating this summer, thus far?
These past few weeks have been hot, so my meals have consisted of foods and treats that keep me cool, energized, and satisfied. Though a top 3 seems impossible, I would have to say that I’ve loved making Basil Avocado Shrimp Salad Wraps and Fresh Strawberry Pie.
First, let’s start with my favorite, the Shrimp Salad Wraps – with sweet potato chips to make them even better to eat:
- First, the ingredients
- For the sweet potato chips:
- 2-3 medium sweet potatoes, sliced into ⅛-inch thick coins
- Salt and pepper
- Cooking spray
- For the shrimp salad:
- 20 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1 ½ cup of grape tomatoes, halved
- ¼ of a small red onion, finely chopped
- 2 avocados, diced
- 4 fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
- 2 large heads of butterhead or romaine lettuce
- For the marinade
- Juice of 2 lemons
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 3 fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons of white wine vinegar
- 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
- ½ teaspoon of paprika
- Salt and pepper (to taste)
- For the sweet potato chips:
- For the sweet potato chips: preheat your oven to 375 degrees and grease a large baking sheet with cooking spray. Lay out your sweet potato coins in a single layer and season with salt and pepper.
- Roast the sweet potato coins for 15 minutes, flip, and roast for another 15 minutes. Remove, let them cool, then store them appropriately until you’re ready to indulge.
- For the shrimp salad: grease a large skillet over medium heat with cooking spray, add shrimp, and cook, for approximately 2 minutes per side. Set aside and let cool.
- For the marinade: In a small bowl, whisk together your lemon juice, garlic, basil, vinegar oil, paprika, salt, and pepper.
- In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, onion, avocados, and basil. Fold in the shrimp, pour marinade over everything and toss until all ingredients are coated.
- Scoop generous amounts of the mixture into your butterhead or romaine lettuce, and voila!
- OPTIONAL: If you’re able, try grilling the shrimp! It’s summertime, so pulling out the grill is always appropriate.
Being a strong believer in always having dessert – and absolutely loving this fruit in the summer – I was lucky enough to find this Fresh Strawberry Pie:
- First, the ingredients:
- For the crust:
- 1 cup of white whole wheat flour [or any flour of your choice]
- ¼ teaspoon of salt
- 6 tablespoons of cold unsalted butter, chunks
- 3-4 tablespoons of ice water
- For the filling:
- 2 pounds of strawberries, sliced and divided into about 5 cups
- ¾ cup of granulated sugar
- ¾ cup of water
- 3 tablespoons of cornstarch
- 8 ounces of reduced-fat cream cheese, room temperature
- 3 tablespoons of confectioners’ sugar
- 2 teaspoons of lemon zest
- ½ teaspoon of vanilla extract
- For the crust:
- For the crust: mix flour and salt in a large bowl, and begin adding in the cold butter – if you have a food processor, or even a blender, please use it to make the combining process much easier! Once all combined, add water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the dough is evenly moist – NOT wet – and is beginning to clump together. Pat the dough into a 5-inch disk, wrap with plastic, and allow the dough to refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Remove roughly 15 minutes before you start rolling it out.
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees.
- Roll out your dough into a 12-inch circle and carefully place it in a 9-inch pie pan. Tuck the overhanging dough under, forming a thick edge/crust. Crimp the ends with a fork or spoon and prick the crust with a fork a few times.
- Bake your crust until the edges are almost golden brown, roughly 15 to 20 minutes.
- For the filling: puree 1 ¾ cups of your strawberries in a food processor until smooth. Whisk sugar, water, and cornstarch in a medium saucepan until sugar is fully dissolved. Stir in the strawberry puree and bring to a boil, stirring constantly until thickened, about 2 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and let cool for 30 minutes.
- Next, beat cream cheese, confectioners sugar, lemon zest, and vanilla in a bowl until smooth. Spread evenly along the bottom of the baked crust.
- Last, gently add your remaining sliced strawberries to the cooled strawberry mixture. Pour the filling into the crust and refrigerate for about 4 hours. After, you have a sweet, cool, and refreshing dessert ready to serve!