Fresh juicy nectarines with Chévre, pain campagne and drizzled honey and the absolute number one staple in our home, soft poached egg on hot buttery toast.
Late summer is bliss for the lazy cook. The abundance of fruit and veg that you can eat with no cooking required makes lunches in particular quick, easy affairs - even in bustling city centres. While dinners are becoming a little more hearty around here - back to curries, pasta dishes and soups - lunches are still light and similar each day.
Taking Arthur to our local market can be stressful, he's two and a tornado, but often it's worth it as firstly he can see the fruit & veg and choose some for himself which often makes him more inclined to eat it. Secondly, he's a total flirt and we often come away with a free banana or a handful of blueberries thanks to his blue eyed smile and (mostly prompted) Bonjour Madame.
Our August shopping lists are fruit heavy, the last of the apricots, nectarines and peaches, gorgeously sweet melon and any type of plum are top of our list. All kinds of salad are in season but our favourite is Batavia, so are courgettes, tomatoes and green beans. So what to do with them?
- Classic but fantastic melon with parma ham. I love it plain and ungarnished but it's also delicious with balsamic reduction
- Caprese salad - grab your favourite tomato, layer it up with some delicious fresh mozzarella & basil and drizzle with olive oil
- Anything on toast! We love goats cheese with nectarines and honey (as above) but other great toppings are cream cheese, ham and fig, avocado and tomato, pesto and medium boiled egg, grilled summer veg...I could go on and on!
- Homemade pizza - ok so this option isn't so light but it is quick! We batch mix pizza dough, freeze it in portions and bring it out when we fancy it. My favourite topping at the moment is baby spinach, goat cheese and figs.
One of the biggest advantages for me of these meals is that I can get Arthur involved in preparing them. He loves chopping soft fruit or vegetables, sprinkling cheese on top of pizza, being the person in charge of the ham etc, and I reckon it makes it about 50% more likely that he'll eat whatever is put in front of him!
Enjoying this season of plenty before we hit full on Autumn brings me immense pleasure, I feel greedy for all the tastes of summer and love how easy it all is to bring together. Enjoy this last month of lazy lunching!