“Chef Dom needs to blog more.”

Yes yes I know…

I do apologize to all of my followers that have been waiting for a post from me. I have been working very diligently on projects of my own, on top of working 50 hours a week at my normal job. Never the less, I am sitting here with a glass of tea typing away…with food on the brain of course!!

Since it is summer, I want to ask everyone what is your favorite summer time produce that you like to use in cooking? With so much fresh and local produce around this time of year, it is hard for me to chose just one, so here are my top three.

1. Tomatoes
Tomatoes are awesome in flavor this time of year and can be used in any type of food prep. Salsas with a nice, fresh, diced tomato is a perfect accompaniment to any grilled protein. Also they are good for a nice caprese salad with fresh mozzarella cheese, balsamic, and basil. You can also grab a few and roast them with some olive oil, garlic, and herb then purée into a nice sauce that you can freeze and use over pasta.

2. Summer squash
I really love the texture and flavor of summer squash. Sautéed and paired with onions and tomatoes is the perfect side dish. You can also slice and toss in your favorite salad greens for color and crunch.

3. Fresh Haricot Verts (French cut green beans)
I don’t mind using frozen green beans, but during the summer it is nothing like using fresh, hand picked haricot verts. When cooked perfectly they have a certain crunch factor that is perfect for a salad or side dish.
The best way to cook these is to steam or boil for no longer than 4 minutes. All you are trying to do is lock in that vibrant green color and to not lose any of it’s beneficial nutrients. After 4 minutes remove from the water and add to an ice bath ( equal parts ice and cold water) and allow them to hang out for a couple minutes. After that dry off the beans (especially well if you are going to sauté…water and oil/butter do not get along) and use as you wish. Sauté them with garlic and olive oil, or use in a cold salad with almonds, crusted red pepper, and a nice vinaigrette.

What are your favorite ingredients that you love to use in your summer time cooking?

Leave comments and ideas of what you like to use!

Remember email me for cooking tips, recipes, or anything culinary related. I am going to start doing some menu consulting for anyone that needs help planning menus for events, diets, at home cooking, or if you are in the process of opening up a restaurant. I have the knowledge and I’m willing to share it!

As always…happy cooking!

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