Perfect Summer Meal

“Perfect” is a very lofty claim to make about a meal. However, I’ll defend it by saying that this meal meets all of my qualifications for the “perfect” summer meal:

  1. Takes place indoors. That is, in air conditioning.
  2. Minimum effort required by yours truly.
  3. Delicious and cheap, thereby scoring excellently on the flavor/dollar ratio.

Clockwise from the top left, we have fruit salad (apples, bananas, raspberries and peaches), American cheese (wa wa), onion rolls, pulled beef, a veggie tray, and plates with festive napkins (fourth of July, you know).

The fruit and veggies play the healthy card, aside from being cold, crisp, fresh and delicious. The veggie tray and the pulled beef play the bargain card because both were snagged for half price (“use by” date approaching). The onion rolls pull the awesome card because they are delicious and possibly my favorite bread product of the moment. And as far as ease, the pulled beef was pre-cooked and everything. I just had to heat it up in the oven. All I really did for this meal was to cut up the fruit for the delicious fruit salad. Easy peasy!

Did you do anything delicious for the holiday weekend? I love grilling out–but sometimes you gotta have a great summer meal inside with the AC on like we did.


Green Tea

This isn’t a normal green tea… no, I got it from my local grocery and it’s blackberry, pomegranate, acai green tea. What a mouthful. I made sweet iced tea from it (I base my recipe off one from Southern Living), and while it may look like polyjuice potion to some, it tastes delicious!!

This picture doesn’t do the weird color justice. It’s a kind of greeny-purple in real life. Wrap your mind around that one!

Bring 3 cups of water to a boil. Add 3 tea bags. Boil for one minute, cover and remove from heat, let steep 10 minutes.

Mix in 1/2 to 1 cup sugar (I used 1/3 cup stevia).

Add hot mixture to 7 cups cold water. Mix well, pour over ice.

Garnish with a mint leaf!

Relish the Moment

The best part of baseball season: hot dogs.

The thing is, most people have a love/hate relationship in hot dogs. At one point, an adult in our lives informed us what hot dogs are made of, so we went through a phase where we refused to eat them… then got over it. For most of my life my family and I have eaten turkey dogs, but I always had a soft spot for Hebrew National thanks to cheap lunches at Costco. Plus, I have more confidence in the quality of their meat.  After an unhealthy addiction to Sonic’s new specialty dogs (especially the Chicago dog! Didn’t know such a thing existed…) the decision was made that it would be much cheaper to just eat our hot dogs at home. Today we picked up a pack of Hebrew Nationals, some fancy Pepperidge Farms sesame seed hoagie rolls–all of the hot dog buns were sold out. On baseball’s opening weekend & the first good weather in a while. Imagine that! Anyway, armed with our premium hot dogs and fancy pants buns, we were ready for dinner.

Inspired by Sonic’s fancy pants dogs I decided to forgo store bought relish and make my own. Loved it. You can too:

Staci’s Fancy Pants Relish

2 dill pickle spears
1/4 yellow onion
1/2 tomato
the “bottom” of one red bell pepper (I just had leftovers on hand, ok?)
1 tsp sugar

Pulse in food processor for a chunky texture.