Summertime snacks

Dear friend,

I love that you posted that recipe because just a couple days prior I made something very similar and after shoveling it in my mouth via tortilla chips, I used it on tacos! It was actually a recipe I got from your mom- her fiesta bean salad that I became obsessed with at your bridal shower. I love the idea of combining it with seafood and I admire your usage of lettuce instead of taco shells, though I’m afraid that’s something I may never be able to do.

We actually don’t have any real big adventures planned for this summer. We have our usual summer activities- the Boilermaker, Brewfest, a wedding but otherwise just enjoying summertime in Vermont 😎

Lately I’ve been embracing less rigid meal planning and going with what produce is available and on sale. We’ve been doing a lot of salads and grilling pizzas, brats and veggies.  I’ve also been really into baguettes, cheese and salami or prosciutto- so easy to assemble on a picnic or at the beach!

Recently I got together with a group of girlfriends and brought some whipped feta to share. I kind of followed this recipe but mostly eyeballed the cream cheese to feta ratio and added in a bunch of chives and basil.  We have so much basil it goes into pretty much anything we eat.  Also I used just regular cream cheese.  Anyway, I intended to spread this on a baguette that I brought but since I didn’t want to miss any more of the juicy conversation to go inside and cut the bread (because big surprise, I was the last one there even though I live the closest) and there were so many pita chips already in a bowl, we just used those. BUT the next day I really did it. On Tuesdays and Friday’s in the summer, one of the bakery’s downtown sends a guy on his bike through our neighborhood selling their leftover bread. He yells “freeeesh breaaaaad” and my heart skips a beat each time. One time I chased him down the street while we were meeting with our architect and P said he’s never seen me run that fast. Anyway, I happened to be outside cutting some basil (it’s out of control in the best way possible) when he rode by and I scored a loaf of olive bread. Now when I purchased this loaf I actually thought it was olive oil bread so I was a tiny bit sad because I don’t love all olives (only black for me!) but then I remembered the leftover whipped feta. And that I had a cucumber in the fridge. And then everything came together in the most casual, unplanned summer fashion!

The Verdict: the main ingredient is cheese so it’s obviously a winner.  It was so light and creamy and feta-y and basil-y. It’s perfect for when you’re sipping on wine and snacking with girlfriends. Or a on Friday night, smeared on freeeesh breaaaaad and topped with cucumbers while discovering and binging on Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. And then again on Saturday for lunch.  It also would be great spread on a pita pocket that is then stuffed with all sorts of veggies or in a puff pastry.

And now a garden update! We’ve been enjoying lots of greens and basil. The cilantro and parsley are ready to go and I think our squash is almost ready! The one bummer is our spinach “bolted” which happens if it gets too hot and results in the leaves being kind of bitter. But that’s ok! It’s been so great watching everything grow!

spinach, kale, carrots, peppers and swiss chard
tiny peppers
almost ready to eat!
yay tomatoes!

Hope you guys have been enjoying the sunshine!

Until next time!

Marissa

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