Meals for a Month: July 2012

Summertime has finally arrived in the Pacific Northwest, just in time for me to go back to work! 🙂 When we left for our vacation two weeks ago, it was rainy, gray and cold. However, when we arrived home a couple of days ago, we were greeted with sunshine and warm temperatures. Finally! We have been longing for this weather.

Although there are many things I miss about my home state of Louisiana, I do enjoy summertime in Washington State. It’s absolutely gorgeous. We have a few hot days, but usually the temperatures are pretty mild in comparison to other parts of the country. Air conditioners aren’t needed, which is a good thing because most houses don’t have them.  And kids play outside all day long. Not to mention it stays light (ish) until almost 10PM. Many evenings, you will find me and my husband sitting around the fire pit on the back deck enjoying a cup of coffee. Love it!

Summertime brings back memories of summers spent in Louisiana going fishing, playing softball and eating all the amazing summertime foods : tomatoes, corn, purple hull peas, okra, butter beans, squash, cucumbers, peaches and watermelons. Add to that some freshly caught fish that my MawMaw would dust with seasoned cornmeal and fry up. Hmm! Hmm! Trust me, folks, that is some good eatin’.

Unfortunately, I don’t have a “green thumb,” and have yet to plant a garden that actually produces much of anything. Thankfully, we have plenty of farmer’s markets and roadside stands in our area to keep me supplied with fresh produce and other local finds. Yet, the flavors and smells of Louisiana food still lingers. However, I have embraced summertime favorites of the Pacific Northwest, such as grilled salmon, Bing and Rainier cherries and Walla Walla onions. (Okay, I know they aren’t Vidalia onions. But still, they are good!)

Since it’s summertime, I’d be happy eating various salads for every meal; however, my family might revolt. So, I did create a menu plan to keep them satisfied and fed. I’m digging this monthly meal planning. It takes me under and hour to throw it together (thanks to Pinterest and my favorite cookbooks!) Although I don’t follow it to the letter, it frees up my brain during the 5 o’clock scramble. And in the summertime, I just want to be outside, not stressing over what to feed my family. Yep, it works for me…at least for now! 🙂

So, what’s your favorite summertime meal? Feel free to share, include recipes, too.

(Click on link to view menu calendar and for recipe links.)

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