Take yellow and green zucchini, pick the ones that are on the small side and quite firm.
Trim the ends and slice lengthwise on a mandoline (if you don't have one, get one ASAP). Warm up olive oil in a large pan and add several sliced garlic cloves. No need to brown them. Add sliced zucchini, and toss until they soften and warm. Season with salt, one last toss and serve. I serve it in a large platter, drizzled with good olive oil, several generous squeezes of lemon and some chopped herbs (basil or parsley, or both).

I know it's not a full meal, but it is quick and healthy. Add to that grilled chicken breasts, couple of bottles of wine (Verdicchio, sav blanc, etc.) and you'll be back on track.
This is a little more work than that zucchini recipe, but a lot less boring.

Sweet Pepper and Fig Peperonata


• 12 dried black Mission figs, halved lengthwise
• 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
• 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 4 assorted bell peppers (chose different colors), sliced 1/2 inch thick
• 1 red onion, sliced 1/4 inch thick
• 1 large garlic clove, smashed
• 1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
• One 2-inch strip of lemon zest
• Salt
• 1/4 cup dry white wine
• 1/4 cup water
• 1 thyme sprig
• 2 tablespoons chopped basil
• 1 teaspoon chopped marjoram


1. In a shallow bowl, toss the figs with 1 tablespoon of the balsamic vinegar.

2. In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the bell peppers, onion, garlic, cinnamon and lemon zest, season with salt and cook over moderately high heat for 3 minutes. Add the wine and cook for 1 minute. Add the water and thyme, cover and cook until the peppers are tender, 10 minutes. Add the figs and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat. Discard the garlic, cinnamon, lemon zest and thyme. Transfer to a bowl and let cool slightly, then stir in the basil, marjoram and the remaining 1 tablespoon of vinegar and 2 tablespoons of oil. Season with salt. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Simple summer dish we had last night w/excellent results:

Blackened Grouper w/Grilled Asparagus & Spring Green Salad


    1.5 lbs. Grouper filet
    Cajun spice rub
    3 small navel oranges
    1 med. red onion
    1 bunch, asparagus
    1 lb. fresh spring greens
    Kosher salt
    Fresh ground black pepper
    Balsalmic vinegar

Liberally coat both sides of the grouper filets w/cajun rub and set aside. Heat grill to full temp, and place a cast-iron griddle pan or large cast-iron skillet inside the grill to get hot.

Peel and divide oranges, removing all of the pith, set aside. Peel and slice the red onion into thin rings. Toss onions and orange slices w/spring green mix, then add 2-3 tbls. balsalmic vinegar and 3-5 tbls. of EVOO, salt and pepper to taste, then re-toss to evenly coat.

Remove woody stems of asparagus and marinate in Italian dressing for 10-15 mins. When grill and skillet/griddle pan are hot, place a 1/2 tbls. of EVOO in the skillet and add grouper filets, turning once after 4 mins. Grill the asparagus tips for approx. 6 mins. until light grill marks appear, return to the marinade bowl. Remove filets and let sit for 2-3 mins.

Arrange salad and asparagus tips on plate, then top w/a portion of the grouper filet.

We had this w/an '02 Sebastiani Dutton Ranch Chardonnay, which stood up well to the cajun rub and balsalmic vinegar in the dressing. Great summertime meal that takes a total of about 20 mins. to pull together.
Fish In Papiote

  • 1 filet of fish (preferably sea bass for me)
  • Place it on a large sheet of parchment paper
  • Add vegetables (bell peppers, onions, garlic, maybe some summer veggies)
  • drizzle with olive oil and salt/pepper/lemon
  • fold parchment paper over and seal
  • place in oven, remove when finished.

    I like to place the veggies under the fish, so the juices and olive oil drizzle down and stew them. It's so good and easy, and like you said, "light". The same can be done with tin foil and on the BBQ.

    Here's a good side dish:
    Summer Veggie mix
    2 Carrots
    2 Zuchinni
    2 Summer Squash (the yellow kind)
    1/2 bunch scallions

    Cut all lengthwise, about 1/4" thick or smaller, but even. Add carrots, saute for one minute, add remaining ingredients, saute until done, add fresh dill, salt and pepper to taste.

    Play around with jasmine and basmati rice. They're both fragrant and light, and go well with exotic light foods and spices.
  • quote:
    Originally posted by Francis S:

    • 12 dried black Mission figs, halved lengthwise

    Who uses dried figs when fresh figs are all over? Confused I tell you who, the ever inventive and oh! so original, our own environmental prodigy, the Cut'n'Paste Frankie. Read the damn recipe next time before your c'n'p it, will you. Roll Eyes
    Originally posted by grunhauser:
    << once again, insert stupid stuff here >>

    First off, there are many reasons for using one style of ingredient over another, such as texture, flavor and/or presentation. Secondly, reading has got nothing to do with anything here. And, in conclusion, YOU'RE STILL STUPID.


    Originally posted by grunhauser:
    << insert even more stupid stuff >>

    Once again, YOU'RE STUPID. And now on top of that, because you're such a prick, I'm going to post another recipe, which just happens to go along with this theme. I'm sure as sure that you are going to find a fault with this one, but I'll understand. You're stupid.

    Spicy Red Pepper and Walnut Dip


    * 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
    * 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
    * 1 cup small, crustless, stale white bread cubes (from a 2-ounce piece of bread)
    * 1/2 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
    * 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
    * 3 red bell peppers, cut into thin strips
    * 2 tablespoons water
    * 1 large garlic clove, smashed
    * 1 small dried red chile
    * Salt
    * Toasted pita wedges, for serving


    1. Preheat the oven to 350°. In a small bowl, mix the lemon juice and vinegar. Add the bread cubes and toss to coat; let the bread soak up the liquid.
    2. Meanwhile, spread the walnuts in a pie plate and bake until lightly toasted, about 5 minutes.
    3. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the bell peppers, water, garlic and chile and season with salt. Cover and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the peppers are tender, about 10 minutes. Uncover and cook over high heat, shaking the skillet, until all the liquid has evaporated, about 1 minute; discard the dried chile.
    4. Transfer the peppers to a food processor and let cool until warm. Add the soaked bread and pulse to a thick, coarse paste. Add the walnuts; pulse just until coarsely ground. Scrape the dip into a bowl and season with salt. Drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil and serve.


    And by-the-way, not that it makes any difference, or that I care a rat's ass bit of concern what your ignorant, moronic opinion is, we had the Bonny Doon NV Dry Pacific Rim Riesling with this. The menu included some knock out buffalo wings and kim chee. Along with other good stuff. Anyway, that's it. You're stupid.

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