The weather is warm, my garden is bursting, and with our summer-at-home in full swing it’s the perfect time for some al fresco grilling recipes! Grilled chicken is just about as classic as it comes for a summery dish and this version is drizzled with a riff on green goddess dressing that is packed with seasonal flavors. My friends at Weber shared their Weber Connect Smart Grilling Hub with me and I got to test it out on this recipe. It has a variety of cook programs for different selections of meat that take you through the prep stage through taking it off the grill. It takes the guesswork out of the grilling part, and leaves the seasoning, sides, and sauces up to me (my favorite part!) read more

The weather has been so hot recently, I have been doing a little bit of cooking one or two days a week and trying to stretch out leftovers as long as possible to avoid my steamy kitchen. Most nights recently we’ve been making chicken or veggie burgers on the grill and serving them up with a green salad and some kind of a cold side dish — this simple pasta salad has been a favorite. I had the idea for making this pasta salad with orzo, but I’ve scoured all of the grocery stores near me and couldn’t find orzo pasta anywhere. Stumped for a substitute, I stumbled on these tiny farfalline, itty bitty mini bowtie pasta that are so cute! They were a great replacement and melded perfectly with the chickpeas, tomatoes, cucumbers and fresh herbs in the dish. My first ripe tomatoes and baby cucumbers are starting to pop in our veggie garden, so I’ll be making this with fresh ingredients all summer long. read more

I didn’t plan to write a whole post about these tasty little snacks, but I enjoyed them so much that had to save the idea to reference again! I whipped up these little crostini for a warm, sunny happy hour this weekend and they were delightfully delicious. Here’s how to make them: toast a baguette (I used Italian bread since that’s what I had on hand) until the bread pieces are just lightly golden brown. Spread a healthy portion of herbed goat cheese or Boursin cheese on the warm bread and top them with a few torn pieces of salty prosciutto, slices of sweet summer peaches, and a couple of fresh basil leaves. I gave them a dash of black pepper on top and started gobbling them up immediately! Sometimes simple is best, and these tasty bites made with fresh summer ingredients were certainly the case. Yum! read more

Beach days are in full swing in our little coastal town! After living by the ocean for the past 5 years, I like to think that I’ve gotten my beach-packing process down to a science. One of my best tricks for packing up for a long day in the sand is making tasty wrap sandwiches that transport easily and hold up well in a cooler. I thought I’d share a few of my favorite combinations, all made with fresh, crisp Little Leaf Farms Lettuce, to help inspire your next beach day lunch! read more

Summer dinners are all about keeping things simple and seasonal, and the corn and basil fettuccine is the perfect representation of simple and seasonal. It’s made with just a handful of ingredients: pasta, fresh corn, crisp green herbs, some pasta water and parmesan cheese (plus some hot red pepper flakes if you like the heat!). The sauce that coats the al dente pasta is made from pureeing some of the sweet summer corn with hot pasta water and salty parmesan cheese, it’s almost like a corn cacio e pepe! More fresh corn is folded into the pasta with a heap of fragrant green herbs. I snipped the basil, parsley and chives out of my garden just a few minutes before adding them to the dish, so I’m basically a farm to table restaurant now, right? Scroll down for the full recipe, and enjoy! read more

As we gear up for the 4th of July this weekend, I’ve been thinking about my summer bucket list. It’s usually full of travel plans and weekend getaways, but with this year all about being closer to home I’ve been thinking about all of the special things we can do right in our own backyard. I expanded our garden and love checking in daily on how our green beans are climbing. We’ve already had a lobster bake (get the recipe in my cookbook!), made popsicles, rode bikes to the ice cream shop, and eaten tons of al fresco dinners. The bucket list looks different this year, but it’s making me truly appreciate how lucky we are to love where we live and have this time at home together. I think it’s going to be a summer to remember! Sharing more of what I’ve been to, new recipes, reading recommendations and more below: read more

I have been in kind of a dinner rut lately, making the same things on repeat. As I was thinking about what to make for dinner last week I realized that I’ve been lacking my favorite summer inspiration: strolls through the farmer’s market. Perusing fresh ingredients, taking in the colors and smells, and pulling ideas from what is in season is a huge part of how I brainstorm new recipes. Until I can get back to the farmer’s market, I started to dig into some older summer recipes to freshen up my meal plan. I stumbled upon an “ultimate caprese” board I made last year and decided to give it a revamp. This version is full of sweet peaches, prosciutto, burrata and tons of juicy tomatoes and fresh basil from my garden. I love how the sweetness of the peaches balances the salty prosciutto and creamy burrata — it’s like summer on a plate!  read more

I took Jane last week to the Franklin Park Zoo for one of our first official activity outings since March, and she kept saying to me “Mom this is a REALLY fun day.” I totally agree – it was a really fun time, and it’s amazing what a tiny slice of “normal” can do for your outlook these days. Zoo New England has officially reopened both their locations with tons of health and safety measures in place, and I was so impressed with whole experience.
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I partnered with EatingWell magazine to share some tips and pointers to go along with a beautiful recipe series their editorial team created that celebrates the summer table. All of the recipes feature fun spins on warm-weather dishes and highlight the best ingredients the season has to offer. While I love coming up with my own recipes and experimenting in my kitchen, there’s something really relaxing about working my way through a new recipe that someone else created. I got the opportunity to just that, and recreated all of the dishes from the summer table series at home! I’m sharing a bit more about each summer menu item and the ingredients that made them stand out – be sure to check out July-August issue of EatingWell magazine on newsstands now for all of the recipes. read more

I’ve been thinking lately, with all of these meals we’re eating at home, how to mix up the staple recipes in our weekly dinner routine to feel new. With the warm weather (finally) here, I’ve been turning to the grill quite a bit for dinner-prep. I love that it gives me some time outside in the fresh air, and generally makes quick work of the cooking process. We love a good pasta dish in our house, and this recipe is a fun way to bring the grilled flavor into a quick, weeknight pasta recipe. I made this simple dish with just 10 ingredients: pasta, veggies, tons of fresh herbs from my garden, and flavorful al fresco chicken sausage. read more