Downsizing the Kitchen: Seasonal Sips and Tips for a Blow-up Summer

Ah, this is the season of refrigeration and grilling, but unfortunately, we’ve all been badly burned by outrageous food prices so fast. dared. You can still enjoy summer’s abundance of fresh fruits, vegetables, cheese, fish and meat without heading to your lender for a HELOC — and without feeling deprived. Here’s a primer on preventing inflation on your summer menu.

Kathryn Kaufman


Steak outside

While T-Bones, ribeyes, New York Strips, and other carnivorous luxuries aren’t in everyone’s budget, you can still enjoy an equally hearty steak. So try a flat iron, skirt steak, tenderloin or sirloin and watch the chemistry work its magic:

• Marinate the meat in an acid base of lemon juice, vinegar or garlic wine and choose herbs and spices for great flavor and break up tough muscle fibers.

• Pounding with a hammer for smoothing, it gives you a good workout too;

• Soak the meat in brine.

• Massage with a dry rub mixing herbs, spices, salt and sugar to get a salty crust that locks in the juices. The rub should be prepared in precise proportions – a higher salt content works best with beef, lean meat and fish, while a higher sugar content is preferred for different cuts of pork to create crumbs that melt in your mouth;

• Roast the meat in a cast iron skillet to seal in the juices before tossing it on the grill.

• Cook meats on aromatic wooden boards for a woody and smoky flavor and moist delicacy. The cedar raise beef, poultry, and fish, while the multi-tasking cherrywood tames the meat of buffaloes such as venison, bison, and wild boar;

• Like Baby Bear’s porridge, don’t overcook or overcook, but grill to perfection.

There are a lot of cheap fish in the sea

Which is just as healthy (and possibly more sustainable) than exotic or expensive fish and seafood with a load of anti-inflammatories, which boost the brain. Deep sea fish and small cold water fish including anchovies, sardines, and mackerel are packed with good fish fat with less mercury and PCBs than giant fish like tuna and swordfish. Tossed in golden olive oil pasta, or as a topping for bread, they make frugal and sloppy summer dishes. Local, light and bright fish such as thresher shark and rock cod make good barbecue options and bases for seafood or ceviche cocktails. If you love crab cakes, you can make a divine and budget-friendly quack mixing wild-caught salad shrimp, Alaskan cod, or locally shredded salmon with homemade Meyer lemon aioli.

Finally, enjoy caviar this summer with affordable, local varieties that add intense saltiness, color, and flavor starting with sturgeon native to the Missouri and Mississippi river systems. This little roe, dark brown to almost black like Beluga, has a nutty flavor reminiscent of Osetra. Others include the buttery Paddlefish Caviar, delicious trout caviar with large golden pearls, translucent grains of delicious salmon caviar, or the bright orange flying fish pellets that ooze sushi, assorted sides and main dishes. The best way to extend your caviar dollar is as a garnish or garnish—a drop here, a sprinkle there on eggs of all manners, or hollowed-out red baby potatoes, scallops, French fries, or in the middle of a bull’s-eye seafood pizza.

It’s time

When the season’s bountiful aesthetics begin to soften, bruise, wilt, or become less than perfect, it’s time to turn them into a plethora of cool, refreshing summer soups full of vibrant color and sun-ripened flavors. Avocado ripening, whip up a cold cucumber and avocado soup; Juicy mangoes provide great tropical refreshment with ginger and turmeric. Fresh mint comes out, added to mashed watermelon for the authentic Greek Karbozosopa; Heirloom tomatoes that are well past their prime make wonderful gazpacho that hails from southern Spain.

The classic liquid salad that blends grape-picked tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, garlic, and bread slices in extra virgin olive oil has evolved into many modern interpretations. Gazpacho has turned urban, fruity, fishy, ​​meaty, smoky and sophisticated. Golden gazpacho marries the sweet and tangy flavors of tropical fruit watermelon, yellow heirloom tomato, orange juice (recipe below), and strawberry gazpacho combined with seeded fruit with fresh basil leaves, while grilled gazpacho combines the smoky mesquite flavors of roasted red peppers. And red pepper. Tomatillo.

Thirst quench frugal

Cool your heels and invigorate your spirit with refreshing sips that you can make at home using bright, summery herbs, fruits and flowers for versatile mocktails and cocktails. Put delicate sprigs of thyme, fresh mint, or basil leaves into a tall, chilled glass of lemonade, lime, iced tea, fruit sprinkles, agua friscas, vodka cocktails, blinis, margaritas, slashes, smoothies, or a simple pitcher of ice water adding antioxidant gravity to each sip. . For a warm-weather tonic, try a sweet and sour ancient Persian remedy called sekanjabin by mixing lemon peel, ginger, mint, vinegar, honey, mashed fruits, or grated cucumber.

Culinary blooms grown in your herb garden range from brightly pigmented nasturtiums, aromatic buds of fennel, yellow calendula to snapdragon, and delicate flowers and violet lavender petals add vibrant garnish to tropical drinks. To mix up salty and savory cocktails and vegetable-based drinks, use tomatoes, peppers, onion caps, rainbow radishes, pickle drizzle, or a small, dirty pepperoncini juice. I will drink for it!

My refreshing (and anti-bloating) contribution is a great summertime sip on this divine golden gazpacho.

Sweet Golden Gazpacho

Golden gazpacho

Golden gazpacho

(Courtesy of Kathryn Kaufman


• 3 large ripe yellow tomatoes

• 2 large mangoes, peeled and cut into cubes

• 2 yellow peppers, seeded, cut into cubes

• 1 cup fresh orange juice

• Half a glass of dry white wine (optional)

• 1/2 cup sweet onion cut into cubes

• 1 tablespoon fresh coriander

• 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

method: In a food processor, puree tomatoes, mangoes, peppers, onions, wine and coriander. Mix in juices and season with salt to taste. Cool for three hours. Pour into martini glasses and garnish with a lemon wedge or orange peel.

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