Some simple summer veggie ideas

“Recipes” included on this page:

Leaning Tower of Tomato, Basil and Mozzarella
Raw Kale Salad
Steamed Beets and Greens
Sungold Soup

I won’t go so far as to venture to call these “recipes,” because they are so simple. Some moms are always asking me for ways to get their kids to eat veggies. I’ve found with my daughter and many of her friends that simpler is usually better.

This is what my daughter calls the Leaning Tower of Tomato, Basil and Mozzarella. She loves helping assemble it too.

So easy:

3/4 lb to 1lb of fresh mozzarella, sliced into thinnish pieces
a few large handfuls of fresh basil leaves
a couple of large sweet fresh ripe red or yellow tomatoes
some sungold or cherry or roma tomatoes, for garnishing
balsamic vinegar, for garnishing
celtic sea salt, to taste

Place a slice of mozzarella on a plate. Layer a slice of tomato on top of this, then some big basil leaves, then another slice of mozzarella, etc., until you have a tower as tall as you can make it without it sliding (the tallest one we’ve made had 5 slices (very thinly sliced)/5 layers. drizzle balsamic vinegar over and around the “tower.” You can also garnish with more basil leaves, and/or sungolds cut in half.

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Raw Kale Salad

Sometimes my daughter loves steamed kale with lots of fresh pastured butter and salt and pepper. Other times, she hates it, and won’t eat it at all. Recently I asked her if there was any other way she thought she’d like kale, and she said, “Raw, chopped, with some kind of dressing,” which surprised me, and of course I was extremely skeptical. So, I tried it. Just chopped up some raw kale fresh out of the garden (chopped it really small, which I think might have been the key–I know a lot of “raw foodies” massage their kale, which helps break it down a bit, make it more easily digested [though kale is nowhere near as high in oxalic acid as chard or spinach]. Small chopping seems to have some of the same effect as massaging, which at this point I just don’t have time for). She loved it. Even wanted it as part of her breakfast for three days in a row! I remembered that in the last month of my pregnancy (6 and 1/2 years ago), I wanted raw kale salad like this all the time. Couldn’t get enough of it. Maybe that has something to do with her knowing she’d like it that way before she even tried it. Some kind of preverbal (prenatal?!) memory…?

Finely chop a bunch of fresh kale (any kind you like). Toss it with olive oil and salt (pepper optional–I like it, my daughter doesn’t). That’s it. Easy.

Oh, a variation:I sometimes sprinkle lime or lemon juice on it with the olive oil.
Another variation: toss with some cubed avocado, until the avocado starts to coat the kale.

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Steamed Beets and Greens

Thinly slice a few beets. Place in a steamer. Steam for about 5 to 10 minutes, then add chopped beet greens. Steam for another 5 minutes or so. Turn into a bowl. Immediately toss with fresh pastured butter, salt and pepper.

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Sungold Soup

Every year we have tons of Sungold tomatoes (those little orange REALLY sweet ones). They’re delicious popped into your mouth right off the vine. Here’s a simple (and very quick) soup to make out of them:

Place a whole bunch of tomatoes in a pot over a medium-low heat, and boil them down, stirring frequently so they don’t stick to the bottom. You can add some stock or broth here (I sometimes use some home-made chicken stock), but the tomatoes create a lot of liquid. If you add broth you will have to cook longer to thicken the soup. Just keep cooking until you reach desired consistency. Add celtic sea salt toward the end. You can also add basil or other herbs, but these tomatoes are so sweet they taste good on their own. When it’s all cooked, we push it through a press to strain out skins. You could also do it through a sieve to get rid of seeds, but we kind of like the crunchiness of these, so leave them in.

Serve sprinkled with parmesan (if you so desire), and garnished with basil leaves.

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3 thoughts on “Some simple summer veggie ideas

  1. Okay, I love all of these ideas. And I think i have all the ingredients, although not enough of the sun gold tomatoes. My DD loves crispy kale but I can’t stand the smell of it, so I wonder if i’ll be able to convince her to do the raw if I don’t tell her. I always need ideas, ideas are better than recipes for me. 😉

  2. Glad you like the ideas, Lyza. I’ve got more when I get another few minutes to get on here (Like gluten-free/grain-free pizza, always a good way to hide veggies)!
    Hmmm…. Have you tried making kale crisps with the bell-pepper/cashew/lemon mixture I have in my recipes on here? You don’t get that kale smell so much I think… I’m curious to see if she’ll eat the raw kale salad. Maybe I’ll make it when you guys come on Friday. It’s also good if you blend avocado into the dressing. Maybe she’d like that (if she likes avocados, which oddly, V is boycotting lately)!

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