This time of year is my favorite. The longer days of spring and summer give us more time to spend on the trails and at the beach enjoying life. But that sun can play tricks on our schedule and before we know it, it's dinner time.
There are a few fresh staples I keep on hand for a quick meal (I like to make sure we always have red onions, garlic, tomatoes, and cilantro) as well as a good selection of oils (coconut, avocado, olive, and sunflower). Right now, our banana peppers are blooming like crazy, so I've been adding them to the dinner mix, too.
I got into a bit of a rut with my spices, using some of them for multiple dishes, making everything sort of taste the same, so I decided to try a new local spice company, Ground 2 Table. Their spices are labeled by number and each blend is created for a different purpose. For instance, #10 is a blend that's ideal for fish. And because spices begin to lose their flavor once a container is opened, Ground 2 Table puts their high quality organic spices in small single-use packets. The small packs ensure fresh flavors with every meal.
One of my favorite quick and easy dinners is baked salmon. Salmon is a great source of Omega3's and is perfect if you're looking to replace heavier proteins with something satisfying but won't weigh you down.
The first thing I do is rub each filet with the oil and spice blend (one packet of Ground 2 Table's #10 more than covered the four filets) and set them aside on the sheets of foil. Each sheet is cut long enough to wrap and close with about an inch of space between the fish and closure to allow for steaming. While the spices set in, I cut up the veggies and then add them to the top of each filet. Once the foil is pinched closed at the top, they go in the oven (preheated at 350) for about 20 minutes.
The foil boats also make for quick and easy clean up afterwards. I mean, what's the point of having a quick and easy dinner if your have to spend the rest of the night cleaning ?
Another thing I always make sure to have on hand is a fresh selection of salad greens. From start to finish, this dinner takes 30 minutes. That's great when you want to spend more time playing in the sun than working in the kitchen.
Simple, yet satisfying. The perfect quick and easy summer dinner.