Tony and Sarah Nasello
FARGO — This week's recipe is inspired by what we are currently harvesting in our vegetable garden, or more appropriately, Gio's vegetable garden. Our soon-to-be teenage son has spent the summer lovingly tending his garden, which is now coming into August abundance with a bounty of sweet yellow onions, green bell peppers, mouth-watering tomatoes and a crazy amount of cucumbers. We've combined these garden-fresh ingredients with red kidney beans for protein and a zesty red wine and oregano vinaigrette to create our August Abundance Salad.
We love to find our inspiration locally whenever possible, and after a recent trip to a local farmer's market we came home with a lovely assortment of fresh veggies, including a large bag of baby red potatoes that were just begging to be turned into a new dish. With fresh green beans and scallions also in our haul, I knew we had the components of a great potato salad. Add some crispy bacon and a zesty Dijon vinaigrette, and voila, this week's recipe for Red Potato, Green Bean and Bacon Salad was born.
Earlier this month, Tony and I participated in the Fourth Annual Banquet in a Field, hosted by Carl and Julie Peterson at Peterson Farms Seed in rural Cass County. We have been the guest chefs for this event since it began, and back then we could count on one hand the number of farmers we knew personally. The only crops we could confidently identify were corn, sunflowers and wheat and neither of us had ever visited a working farm.
This past July, more than 35 members of my dad's side of the family came from all corners of the country to Bethany Beach, Delaware, to celebrate what has come to be known as Schmeckfest, a name given in homage to our German-from-Russia heritage.
During the summer, we use our grill nearly every night for everything from meat, to vegetables, and even fruit. On weeknights, we're usually looking for a dish that is quick and easy to make, and if it can be prepared in advance, even better. Bon Appetit, the culinary magazine, excels at featuring simple dishes that meet these criteria, and their Soy Basted Pork Chops have become an instant favorite in our family this summer.
The recent heat wave has had us looking for refreshing ways to cool down, and one of my favorite means to unwind and beat the summer heat is with a boozy summer slush. This week we're sharing two updates on recipes from my mother, and now my freezer is stocked for the summer with containers of Tropical Summer Slush and Fresh Fruit Slushie.
We love pancakes and have enjoyed them in both sweet and savory varieties. We also love coconut, whether it's in cookies, bars, pies or just toasted and sprinkled over ice cream. This week we're sharing a recipe for Fluffy Coconut Pancakes that combines both of these favorites to create a breakfast treat that has us craving more.
Fresh fruit is a must this time of year, and watermelon is one of our go-to summer fruits whenever we need to cool down. Watermelon is considered a super-food in the world of nutrition, and this luscious fruit is packed with vital nutrients that are naturally helpful this time of year.
I am not a particularly crafty person, but I do enjoy a good DIY project every now and then, especially one that involves using food products. Homemade playdough is right up my alley, as every ingredient needed is an edible food product, and most are already pantry staples.
Earlier this month, nearly 30 members of our Mathison family clan gathered at Pelican Lake to celebrate the 99th birthday of my beloved grandmother, Sunny Mathison. Four generations were present to witness Sunny's entrance into her centennial year, and I marvel at the mere fact that I am part of her gene pool.