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Summer recipes - nourishing seasonal food

Updated: Oct 28, 2022

I thought I’d share my favourite summer recipe ideas to give you some inspiration on what’s in season and good to eat right now. They’re all vibrant, delicious, quick and easy to make (bonus!) and are full of nourishment. These are things I’ve made in the last few weeks and my kids have eaten them too.

Skip straight to each one using the links below:

Summer breakfast ideas

Mango chia bowl

(ingredients serves 1)

Such an easy breakfast or pudding. Needs prepping the night before. Chia seeds are full of Omega-3, protein and tons of nutrients. Spices have so many health benefits, they’re mega! And we all know we need fruit in our lives.

  • 3 tbsp chia seeds

  • 200ml unsweetened coconut milk (from carton)

  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon

  • ¼ tsp ground turmeric

  • ¼ tsp ground cardamom

  • ¼ tsp ground cloves

  • 100g frozen chopped mango or tropical fruit

  • 1 tsp honey/maple syrup or your sweetener of choice (if needed, you might find it's sweet enough without)

Mix chia seeds, spices and coconut milk in a Tupperware/mason jar with lid or a bowl that you can cover. Give it a good stir. Top with frozen fruit and pop in the fridge overnight and voila!

I got the recipe and picture from Amelia Freer’s book ‘Nourish and Glow 10 day plan’

Summer smoothie

(ingredients serves 1 or 2 small portions)

I have bags of frozen fruit and veg in my freezer for making up quick smoothies. They’re such a great way of giving you a big boost of goodness. You can have this at any time of day. Trust me, the frozen veg really works! You can’t taste it, I promise!

  • 1 piece of frozen broccoli

  • 1 piece of frozen cauliflower

  • Handful frozen peas

  • Handful frozen spinach

  • Handful frozen mango or tropical fruit

  • *if I’m organized I get the frozen stuff into the fridge the night before to thaw out, or as soon as I wake up to have later. Other times (most times!) I give them a little blast in the microwave to soften them for blending*

  • 1 banana

  • Cup of coconut milk from a carton (you can use any milk)

  • Optional extra’s – spices, I like cinnamon, handful of porridge oats to make it more filling, I sometimes add a scoop of Terranova Life Powder for even more nutritious goodness)

Stick it all in a blender and blend! You can have it as a smoothie bowl if you like it thick, or add more milk/water to your desired consistency if you want it as a drink.

Summer Lunche ideas

Grilled peach, feta and watermelon salad

(ingredients serves 1)

This is mega speedy and delicious on those hot summer days. Best served al fresco.

  • 1 peach, sliced and grilled

  • Big slice watermelon, chopped

  • 1/3 block feta cheese

  • Your fave salad leaves

  • Mint leaves

  • Optional (add some balsamic dressing if you like, grains will make it more filling, or some nice bread on the side)

Grill the peach, add it to a plate with all the other ingredients and enjoy!

Baked sweet potato with beans and jalapeños

(ingredients serves 1)

This is really quick and filling. Sweet potato’s are super nutritious, full of vitamins, fibre and quite frankly they feel like a nice warm hug from the inside. Perfect for those summer days when there’s a little chill in the air.

  • 1 large sweet potato (pierce skin)

  • 4 radishes

  • 1 jalapeno

  • 50g butter

  • ½ can black eyed beans, chickpeas or butterbeans

  • 100g mozzarella or cheddar cheese

Bake the sweet potato at 200c for 45-60 mins (or give it a blast in the microwave for 5-6 mins and this will reduce the baking time to 20 mins). Slice the potato in half, scoop out the filling and mash with a fork. Cut the radishes into matchsticks, thinly slice the jalapeno. Warm the butter in a frying pan, fry the jalapeno for 2 mins, tip in the drained beans, stir in the mashed sweet potato and cook for 3-4 mins. Add the cheese and spoon back into the potato skins. Scatter the radishes over the top and serve.

I got the recipe and photo from Nigel Slater’s Greenfeast recipe book.

Summer Dinner Ideas

Gnocchi, tomato & radishes

(ingredients serves 2)

A lovely summery dish with fresh ingredients that's still really filling. The gnocchi is crisp on the outside, soft and fluffy on the inside. This is how I'm cooking my gnocchi forever more!

  • 1 pack ready made gnocchi

  • 400g assorted tomatoes diced

  • 8 radishes finely slices

  • 4 spring onions chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves crushed

  • 3 tbsp olive oil

  • 40g butter

  • Chopped parsley

Prepare the tomatoes, radishes and spring onions and chill. Add gnocchi to a pan of boiling water, cook for a few mins until each dumpling has risen to the surface. Remove and drain. Warm the olive oil in a shallow pan, add the butter, add the garlic, add the gnocchi and fry on a low heat for 10 mins until golden, light and crispy. Remove gnocchi and serve with the garlic, tomatoes, radishes and spring onions.

Recipe and photo from Nigel Slater's Greenfeast recipe book

BBQ miso garlic mushrooms

(ingredients serves 4)

I've been cooking these every time it's been nice enough for a BBQ. They're so delicious and moreish. BBQ'ing them gives such a depth of umami flavour. I like to serve them with BBQ'd halloumi, corn on the cobs and a nice side salad for a picky feast.

  • 8 portobello mushrooms

  • 2 tbsp miso (use white miso if you need it to be gluten free)

  • 2 cloves minced garlic

  • 100g soft butter

Wash and chop the stalks off the mushrooms. Mix the butter, miso and garlic, brush onto the mushrooms and BBQ until the mushrooms are cooked and golden, and the miso butter has melted nicely.

Summer Drink Ideas

Elderflower cordial

Elderflower are best picked close to midsummer’s day, it’s the 9th July as I write and you may find some this week but you’ll have to be quick! This is such a refreshing drink and the perfect example of nature providing just what we need, right when we need it.

  • 20 heads of elderflower

  • 1 kg sugar

  • 1 litre water

  • 2 lemons quartered

Pick elderflowers that are white/yellow, fluffy and smell nice. Not brown, dry or stinky, those are past their best. Use a fork to pick off the small flowers and collect. Heat the water and dissolve the sugar in a pan. Add the elderflowers and lemons. Allow to cool and keep in a cool dry place for a day to infuse. Strain into a clean sterile bottle or kilner jar and refrigerate. Use as a cordial with cold water, soda water, in cocktails, prosecco or make ice lollies.

You can find an alcoholic elderflower champagne recipe here:

Summer Snack Ideas

Paradise no bake flapjacks

(makes 12-16 pieces)

These were made by our private retreat chef Francesca Klottrup at our Summer Day Retreat over at The Rewilding near Lancaster, UK and they're delicious! I've made them a few times since with my kids. I've given recipe options for full on butter and sugar (my husband's preference) as well as substitutions with coconut sugar and coconut oil (my preference). The fact they're no bake means you're getting all the goodness of the fruit and nuts.

  • 300g dried fruit (you could use cranberries, cherries, mango, pineapple, raisins, apricot)

  • 300g porridge oats (use gluten free if needed)

  • 150g rice crispies (or popped amaranth)

  • 255g dessicated coconut

  • 150g nuts (cashew, pecan, almond)

  • 150g seeds (sunflower, pumpkin, chia, flax)

  • 300g muscovado sugar or 250g coconut sugar

  • 350ml mix of maple and honey or golden syrup

  • 300g coconut oil, coconut butter or normal butter

  • optional - dark chocolate to top

Melt butters, sugars and syrups until bubbling, add rest of ingredients and mix evenly. Line a baking tray with parchment, add the ingredients, press down to flatten and refrigerate for a few hours then slice. Drizzle with dark chocolate if using.

Hope you enjoy! Let me know if you try any of these and what you think.

Love Lisa xxx

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