June Seasonal Vegetables Give a Kick to Mealtimes

June seasonal vegetables | stuffed blue peppers recipe healthy dinner Mexican | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Delish | Recipe: Classic Stuffed Peppers

One of the best things you can do for your body is to eat more vegetables.  June seasonal vegetables bring a combination of sweet and spicy—which we think is just right for summer.  Pay attention to the veggies that are harvested each month and start building your recipe file.  This makes grocery shopping more fun and will give your menus extra variety. You will look forward to farmer’s markets each month and your body will thank you for the nutrients of local produce!

June seasonal vegetables | Elote Grilled Mexican Corn Salad summer healthy eating recipe vegetarian | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Oh Sweet Basil | Recipe: Elote Grilled Mexican Corn Salad

June Seasonal Vegetables To Go

Summer doesn’t have to be all salads, after all. Go big with flavor and use June seasonal vegetables in copious amounts. Vegetables will fill you up quick and give you the right kind of energy. Chiles and corn are big this month so think Mexican food and spice up tonight’s dinner.

June seasonal vegetables | Antipasto Mozzerella Sandwich Lemony Basil Pesto picnic lunch recipe | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Half Baked Harvest | Recipe: Antipasto Mozzerella Sandwich with Lemony Basil Pesto

Antipasto Perfection

If you’re packing a summer picnic, add a tasty sandwich that packs well. Add a generous helping of June seasonal vegetables to artisan bread smeared with pesto. Sliced deli meats are just begging to be paired with roasted red pepper and artichokes. This fuss-free sandwich is packed with flavor and is sure to be a hit with any foodie in tow.

1 loaf ciabatta bread, halved lengthwise
1/2 cup basil pesto (recipe follows)
6 slices spicy salami
6 slices prosciutto
1 cup marinated artichokes, drained and quartered
1 roasted red pepper, sliced
1/2 cup oil packed sun-dried tomatoes, oil drained and chopped
8 ounces fresh burrata or mozzarella
4 ounces provolone, sliced
1 cup baby arugula

Lemon Basil Pesto
2 cups fresh basil
2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
zest and juice of 1 lemon
kosher salt
1 pinch crushed red pepper flakes

Click here for full recipe and instructions. We love the generous dose of homemade basil pesto on fresh ciabatta bread. A little Italian gourmet goes a long way!

June seasonal vegetables | Peri Peri Sauce chili pepper salsa African birdseye condiments recipe | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Chili Pepper Madness | Recipe: Peri Peri Sauce

Spicy Food Loverrr

Spicy food lovers will get a KICK (see what we did there) out of this homemade peri peri sauce. Chili peppers are in abundance and will be your favorite June seasonal vegetables to cook with. They are loaded with Vitamin C and improve your digestive health and metabolism. Peri peri is a traditional African sauce and goes great on chicken and seafood.

1 pound red chilies chopped
4 cloves garlic chopped
1 teaspoon smoked paprika you can sub in other chili powders
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup chopped basil
1/2 cup olive oil or vegetable oil
Juice from 1 lemon (lemon juice)
Salt to taste

Click here for full recipe and instructions. African Bird’s Eye peppers are traditional, but you can substitute with red peppers or bell peppers. No cooking involved with this one! All you need is a handy food processor.

June seasonal vegetables | Cheesy Corn Fitters vegetarian recipe healthy snack | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: House of Yumm | Recipe: Cheesy Corn Fritters

Best Snack Alert

Corn made its appearance in May and we are still finding yummy recipes to keep it in the mix. Adding a little spice to June seasonal vegetables gives them a tasty rev up that will keep you coming back for more. We like these fritters with a dash of Tony Chachere’s because it’s got that smoky creole flavor. Also, if you’re prone to anemia, corn is rich in Vitamin B12, folic acid and iron. Make it a staple in your diet with canned and frozen varieties.

3 cups corn kernels, fresh is best. Can use frozen or canned also
¼ cup cilantro, chopped
¼ cup green onion, chopped
1 jalapeno , deseeded, membranes removed, diced
juice from 1/2 a lime, 1 tablespoon
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground black pepper
¼ tsp chili powder
2 eggs , beaten
¼ cup milk
1½ cup Monterey Jack Cheese, shredded
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Click here for full recipe and instructions. These are so yummy, you’ll find yourself sneaking a few as they come off the pan. It’s okay if they fall apart a little when you flip them. You can mold them back together with your spatula and let the cheese bind everything back together.

June seasonal vegetables | Arugula Spinach Pesto Orzo Salad recipe vegetarian healthy eating | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Table for Two | Recipe: Arugula Spinach Pesto Orzo Salad

Mix in Orzo

Try whole grain orzo instead of the traditional pasta or rice. Mix in a plethora of June seasonal vegetables for a hearty meal that tastes great warm or cold. This month, arugula, spinach, asparagus, and peppers are all at their peak. Why choose one when you can have the benefits of them all in this simple salad for four.

1/2 pound orzo pasta
1 pound asparagus, cut into thirds
12 ounces roasted red peppers, diced
8 ounces roasted baby beets, diced
1/2 cup diced red onion
2/3 cup arugula spinach pesto (add 7 ounces of baby spinach to the recipe for arugula pesto and add more olive oil if needed)
Salt and pepper, to taste
Shaved parmesan cheese

Click here for full recipe and instructions. Once you’ve tried the nutty, peppery flavor of arugula pesto, you might find yourself hooked! It’s a terrific way to use up extra arugula that won’t make it into a salad.

June seasonal vegetables | homemade Chile Rellenos mexican stuffed pepper cheese recipe | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: House of Yumm | Recipe: Chile Rellenos

Just Add Sauce

We were first introduced to chile rellenos years ago and always look forward to finding poblano peppers in season. Peppers are June seasonal vegetables that delight the senses and make mealtime exciting. Poblano peppers are quite large and taste amazing stuffed with cheese. Smother them with a Mexican red sauce and you’ll be shouting ole!

4 Poblano Peppers
3 large Eggs, divided
3 tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
2 cups Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese
4 cups Vegetable Oil, or corn oil

For the Sauce:
2 tablespoons Butter
1/2 Yellow Onion, diced
1 Green Bell Pepper, diced
2 cloves Garlic, minced
2 tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
2 14.5 ounce cans Whole Peeled Tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Chili Powder
1 cup Stock, chicken, beef or veggie

Click here for the recipe and full instructions. There are not many ingredients for the peppers themselves and they taste great if you roast them before stuffing. Learning to batter fry is a little tricky but worth it once you get the hang of it. Keep practicing!

June seasonal vegetables | Italian Ravioli Spinach Artichokes Capers Sun-Dried Tomatoes recipe | Girlfriend is Better
Photo courtesy: Julia’s Album | Recipe: Italian Ravioli with Spinach, Artichokes, Capers, Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Time to Fly South

Lightening up doesn’t mean going hungry. Getting the right nutrition into your body makes it work more effectively and you will feel great as a result. June seasonal vegetables are: artichokes, arugula, asparagus, beans, bell peppers, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, chili peppers, corn, cucumbers, garlic, kale, leeks, lettuce, mushrooms, onions, peas, potatoes, and spinach.  Enjoy these easy recipes and stay tuned for next month’s batch of vegetables to try.

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