The most versatile sauce you’ll make this summer (recipe for chimichurri)

When it comes to grilling, my modus operandi is simple: use good quality products – of which there are many hanging out around the markets these days – and coat them liberally with a persuasive sauce, marinade, or condiment.

Are you familiar with chimichurri? This Argentinian dressing is one of my favorites, and boasts the freshest of flavors thanks to the marriage of simple garden herbs (parsley and oregano) garlic, jalapeño, olive oil, and red wine vinegar.

Vibrant and fragrant, this sauce is my go-to summer seasoning and makes a frequent appearance at my dinner table in the warm-weather months.

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How to build a grilled green bean salad with ingredients you already have

Sometimes I don’t always see how ingredients can come together for a finished dish and, like everyone, I have my moments where I open the refrigerator and wonder what on earth there is to eat for dinner.

Of course, it helps to stay stocked with fresh produce, favorite condiments, and a small herb garden; that way, it’s fairly easy to whip something up that is tasty and exciting. Today’s grilled green bean salad is a perfect example.

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Recycled herb planters and an upcycled wooden ladder garden display

My father has always been an avid ‘dumpster diver’. Not quite literally, but as far back as I can remember, he’s always eyed other people’s end-of-driveway trash and scouted for reusable items. Call it resourceful, frugal or ‘green’, he’s made some surprisingly good finds in his time.

Naturally, he passed on a similar love of upcycling to my sisters and I, as this post is proof. On a recent morning I swerved and stopped the car in front of two garbage cans, hopped out,  and opened my hatchback. A distressed, paint-splotched wooden step ladder was tiredly leaning up against one of the bins, awaiting crunch time in the garbage truck.

Thinking of the obvious potential of this find, I quickly loaded the ladder into the car, and sped away. On the way home, I recalled a few projects I had seen on Pinterest. There was this bookshelf, which isn’t one bit safe for my house with small children, and this garden planter, minus the moldy boots. (It’s just my opinion, but workboots are one thing of which world needs less upcycling…)

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Super Bowl Sandwiches (Recipe: Chicken Parmesan Heroes with Basil)

For all the lentil soups and beet salads I post in this space, you’d never know I have a weakness for sandwiches. Good sandwiches, with crusty bread, moist filling, and crunchy condiments.

Sandwiches reign around here during all seasons. In the spring we tuck thinly sliced radishes and a creamy feta between bread for a delicate, yet filling sandwich. Summertime brings roasted tomatoes and homemade pesto to garnish our pressed sandwiches, and our favorite snack in autumn is a grilled cheese and fresh apple sandwich.

In the winter though, sandwiches get a little more substantial.

In today’s recipe, the delicate baby greens of summer are replaced with panko and Parmesan-crusted chicken filets, a zesty marinara sauce, fresh basil and melted mozzarella. This ‘Hero’ or Italian-style submarine sandwich is messy, filling, and total comfort food.

If you’re looking for something a little different for Game Day, yet still appealing to the boatload of hungry guys, these Chicken Parmesan Heroes will indeed make you the hero.

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Lemon Balm-Infused Lemonade for a Virtual Baby Shower

We’re still grasping at summer even though there is a decided ‘nip’ in the air. I found myself day dreaming about turkey dinner recently and had to shake myself out of the reverie by reminding myself that, hey! it’s still August. At least it won’t be a shock when the leaves start turning color, as I think I’m already in fall mode.

Still, I haven’t pulled out the crock-pot yet. We continue to enjoy chilled soups for lunch and dinners that feature or favorite seasonal vegetable, corn.

We got a late start on gardening this summer, but my herbs still pulled through and are thriving. Lemon Balm, a fast-growing herb from the mint family that has a lovely lemon scent, has wasted no time pushing the boundaries of the raised bed.

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