Don’t letter summer buzz by without visiting your local markets for fresh seasonal ingredients. In addition to the heightened flavor that comes with shopping local, these groceries are also packed with extra nutrients and benefits for local businesses. Readers looking for a little guidance can check out some of Z Living chefs’ favorite seasonal ingredients:
Chef Jeff Henderson, “Flip My Food”
Fresh Summer Cabbage
“For me, there's nothing like a farm-to-table Sunday supper of organic free-range chicken stuffed with aromatics. For the sides, I like hand-whipped creamed potatoes and caramelized cabbage. This comforting meal is bursting with flavor. The fresh summer cabbage is not only the perfect complement, but it’s low in saturated fat, cholesterol and is a good source of fiber. There’s nothing like a satisfying meal that also has great health benefits.”
"Fresh melon, especially watermelon, is one of my favorite summer ingredients. I marinate mine in a vacuum bag with fresh lime juice and zest, along with a dash of Sriracha chili sauce when I want a little extra kick."
"One of my all-time favorite summer ingredients is wild sockeye salmon! I am all about fresh seasonal fare and this fish is a coveted summer delicacy. Not only is wild sockeye delicious, it is packed with healthy omega-3 fats. It’s great as a main dish or as part of a salad, a wrap or scrambled with eggs. You can find it fresh in June and July."
Vikki Krinsky, “Recipe Rehab”
Cherries and Cucumbers
“I love making homemade cherry chutney with cider vinegar, bay leaves, chia seeds and a dash of maple syrup. That pairs very well with goat cheese, pork or even as a yogurt topping. I also love that cucumbers are in season. For something fun and different, try peeling then juicing or blending and making a fresh salad dressing.” Check out Chef Vikki's blog for more healthy meal prep tips.
Julie Daniluk, "Healthy Gourmet"
"Red peppers are the belle of the ball at any buffet table. Crisp and incredibly sweet, these ladies in red are an easy sell to anyone who is not fond of vegetables. The only limiting factor is that they can be costly during winter, but now that it’s July, we can look forward to eating more local organic peppers.
Did you know that green peppers are just unripe red peppers? Because they are not fully mature, they have a bitter after taste, and half the vitamin C and 1/10th the vitamin A compared to their red or orange siblings. Vitamin A has been shown to protect the skin from oxidative stress, and vitamin C helps build collagen, which ensures youthful skin – this combination makes peppers one of nature’s beauty foods!"
Looking for more eating tips? Don't miss these other articles about food trends and healthy meal planning:
WATCH on Z Living: Flip My Food, which "flips" the favorite dishes of award winning chefs, celebrities, and everyday people to make a healthier version that's just as mouthwatering.
Tell us in the comments: Do you have more favorite summer ingredients? Share them here!
Featured Image Source: Chef Vikki