We love winter comfort food cooking, but summertime dining, with all of the fresh produce finally hitting the market, is even better. Whether we’re firing up the grill or heading to the farmer’s market, nothing beats a fresh, seasonal meal, and Martha Stewart seems to agree. We recently had the chance to chat with her about some of her favorite summer meals, from her favorite no-cook dinner recipe to salads. After all, what pairs better with grilled chicken or barbecue ribs than something cool, crisp, and fresh?
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Of course, there are almost as many salad recipes out there as there are vegetables, so we asked Stewart to narrow it down. What she told us? “I love watermelon salad, caprese salad, and Greek salad for the summer.”
We couldn’t agree more. All three of these salads are fairly simple, highlighting the fresh beauty of ripe summer produce, and all of them are just what we’d want to eat on a hot day. Get your favorite wooden salad bowl and salad servers ready, because you’re going to want to make all of these Martha Stewart salad recipes.
First up, watermelon salad. There are a few different ways that you can make a watermelon salad, but we like this simple version best: simply toss cubed seedless watermelon with fresh lime juice, a chiffonade of basil, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. To finish, add some salty feta cheese on top. The feta and lime juice play beautifully with the watermelon’s sweetness, and it works just as well as a light lunch as it does a side dish.
Next, a classic caprese salad. This one really couldn’t be easier. It’s designed to highlight the magnificence of ripe summer tomatoes. All you need to do is pair sliced tomatoes with fresh mozzarella cheese, basil, and a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste, and you can also drizzle on some balsamic vinegar if you’re feeling frisky. Eat as is, then pair the leftovers with cooked pasta to make a fresh summer pasta salad.
Finally, Greek salad. This pizza parlor favorite helps to lighten up heavier meals, and we love serving it with grilled meats, either as a side dish or as a bed for things like lemony grilled chicken or flank steak.
To make Stewart’s Greek salad, whisk up a simple red wine vinegar dressing seasoned with dried oregano and minced garlic. Then, drizzle your dressing over a big bowl filled with torn romaine lettuce, halved grape or cherry tomatoes, crumbled feta cheese, some thinly sliced red onion, a fresh crunchy cucumber, and pitted kalamata olives. There’s so much flavor in this salad that even with a short ingredient list, it totally sings. Stuff the leftovers into pita bread and you’ve got a surprisingly satisfying meal.
Which of Stewart’s three salads is calling to you? We want to try all of them, so depending on what’s at the Farmer’s Market this weekend, there might be a lot of salad in our future.
In search of more summer recipes? Giada De Laurentiis has plenty:
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