Summer is my favorite season, and one of the easiest seasons to add extra fruits and veggies to your diet. I personally have a veggie garden, and grow squash, eggplant, peppers, tomatoes, carrots and a variety of herbs. We have strawberry plants, and a new peach tree.
Growing your own not only saves money, and time (nothing like just popping out to your backyard to get the ingredient you need for tonight’s dinner!) you also know what you put in your soil and on your plants. I love surfing the net to find out organic ways to fertilize, and keep bugs away.
Of course eating is the best part of growing a garden! Getting my boys involved in planting and taking care of the garden has gotten them (slightly) more interested in eating veggies. I love making ratatouille with my summer loot.
- Drizzle of olive oil
- 1 medium eggplant, skin on, cubed
- 1 medium onion, chopped small
- 1 medium zucchini, cubed
- 1 large tomato, cut in 1/2-inch pieces (or 14 oz canned diced tomatoes)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/4 cup kalamata olives, sliced
- oregano or Italian seasoning
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Grated Parmesan cheese to top
Add a drizzle of olive oil to a large skillet over medium heat. Add in eggplant, and saute for several minutes until it begins to soften. Add the onion and cook until it begins to soften and brown slightly. Add the zucchini, tomato and garlic; cover, reduce heat to low, and cook for 30 min, or until all vegetables are soft and cooked through. Add olives, and allow to sit until they warm through. Serve with grated Parmesan on top.
Serve this, and all your family will love eating their vegetables!
In spirit of the summer, I whipped up a nectarine protein drink today that was so good I have to share!
1 medium ripe nectarine (or peach), pit removed
5 ice cubes
1 cup skim milk
1 scoop vanilla protein powder (I used Nutrition53)
4 packets Splenda
Dash of cinnamon
Put all ingredients into blender and pulse until smooth. Enjoy ice cold!
*Approximate nutritional information: 234 calories, 4g fat, 19g protein, 14g sugar (sugars come from the peach)