How To Incorporate Seasonal Foods Into Your Summer Cooking

07.01.2022

Warmer temperatures aren't the only thing the summer season has to offer. It also provides a supple environment for fresh flavors from lots of seasonal produce. 
 
Here at Goshen Health, we’re kicking off the start of the summer season with an array of recipes that invite fresh options onto our plates. You can find fresh, in season produce at your local grocery stores, farmers markets and community gardens, including Goshen Health Community Garden. 
 
There are many choices of in-season produce that are great options to enjoy on their own, like apples, watermelon, berries, mango, and peaches. There are also plenty of fresh vegetable options for summer side dishes with seasonal carrots, beans, cucumber and celery.
 
Many seasonal options are perfectly fine alone. However, if you would like to liven up your dishes with fresh ingredients this summer, we have several simple and delicious options to offer you.

MANGO SALSA

Sweet and savory are flavor pairings that are synonymous with the summer season. A simple dish that delivers that combination is mango salsa.
 
The tropical mango fruit gets mixed together with onions, peppers, cilantro, salt and lime juice, and works perfectly as a dip or as a topping for tacos or grilled chicken.

WATERMELON ARUGULA SALAD

Arugula is a perfect option for summer salads, and is known for its tart and peppery flavoring. A zesty spin on this leafy vegetable that is sure to be a summer hit at potlucks and barbeques is a fresh watermelon arugula salad.
 
This recipe also uses fresh mint (or other garden herbs), lemon zest, feta cheese and various seasonings.

WATERMELON SLUSHIES

If you’ve got some leftover watermelon after making your salad, save some for dessert!
 
Simply chop up, blend, and freeze your leftover watermelon to have watermelon slushies for dessert throughout the summer.
 
As a bonus, you can toss your bag of frozen watermelon in your picnic basket to act as an ice pack while it thaws for you to enjoy!

CORN AND GREEN BEANS WITH HERB BUTTER

Corn is a versatile summer staple that can be enjoyed alone or in combination with other ingredients.
 
This summer corn and green beans with herb butter recipe is an effortless side dish that can be made with fresh corn, but also works well with leftover corn on the cob.

VERY BERRY FRUIT SALSA

When it’s scorching hot outside, the last thing you want to do is fire up the oven and make your home even hotter. Satisfy your sweet tooth (and your stomach) with a simple, healthy fruit bowl.
 
Fresh fruit is great on its own, especially when it’s ripe, but some of us like just a little bit more. This very berry fruit salsa is easy to make and all natural. Combine strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries and mix it with a little lime zest, lime juice, and a bit of jam or preserves for a refreshing appetizer, snack or dessert!

ZUCCHINI, QUINOA, AND TURKEY-SAUSAGE STUFFED PEPPERS

Our last option is a protein packed recipe that incorporates several summer favorites. This spiralized zucchini, quinoa and turkey sausage stuffed peppers recipe is sure to be a healthy hit at the dinner table or as a dish to bring to a summer gathering.

GIVE BACK WITH LOCAL GARDENING

If you’re in need of some local produce, Goshen Health Community Garden invites volunteers to harvest foods and give back to the community at the same time.
 
Volunteers that help with gardening are able to take home free, fresh produce during harvest times. They can also help deliver boxed produce to our local food pantry partners. This year, the garden will be producing raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, Brussels sprouts, and flowers.
 
To learn how to become a volunteer at the Goshen Health Community Gardens, call 574-364-2496, or visit LiveVibrantly.com.