(almost) no-cook summertime feast

Most summers I grow basil. I haven’t been this year for a host of reasons that sound ridiculous when I want basil and don’t have it, but seem to make sense otherwise. Yesterday afternoon, during an enormous thunder storm that produced flash flooding across the city, I went to TJs. (Thankfully I made it there and back without incident). I was there for chia seeds and our other nut staples, but was tempted by their relatively low-priced packages of basil (it’s so pricey other places). I couldn’t resist buying one, and, well, one thing led to another and I came home with some juicy-looking vine-ripened tomatoes and a baguette as well. With that, dinner was partially accounted for.

Since I had no reason to rush out of TJs into the raging storm, I stocked up on my frozen shelled edamame too. A few hours later, that led to a bean and corn salad with purple cabbage and green onions. And just like that, a no-cook summertime dinner feast.

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Bean, Corn and Cabbage Salad with citrus vinaigrette

Ingredients

1 can black beans, rinsed

1 cup frozen edamame

1 cup frozen corn

1 green onion

1/4 purple cabbage, thinly sliced

lemon juice and zest

orange juice

1 shallot, thinly sliced (I had to use a bit of onion and garlic because I didn’t have a shallot)

olive oil

white wine vinegar

apple cider vinegar

salt and pepper

Method

thaw your frozen corn and edamame, either on the stove top or in the microwave, according to package directions

dice your green onion and toss it in a bowl with the cabbage, black beans, edamame, and corn.

mix your vinaigrette: in a jar with a lid, add 3/4 cup olive oil, 1=1/4 cup white wine vinegar, shallot, 3 Tbsp lemon juice, 2 Tbsp orange juice, some lemon zest, salt, pepper, and a splash of apple cider vinegar. I threw in a dash of cayenne pepper, just for kicks. Shake it up and pour over your bean salad.

Fresh basil and tomato quasi-bruschetta (I’m calling this quasi because I didn’t dice the tomatoes– I marinated them in slices)

Ingredients

4 small vine-ripened tomatoes

8 large basil leaves (fewer or more to taste)

baguette of your choice

splash of olive oil, plus some for drizzling on the bread before toasting

1 clove garlic, peeled

4 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 Tbsp red wine vinegar

salt and pepper

Method

preheat oven to 400 (note- you can do this in a toaster/toaster oven, or simply skip the toasting part if you want to make this a true no-cook experience)

slice baguette, rubbing garlic over each slice. drizzle a little olive oil.

spread out in one layer on baking sheet and toast until golden brown. then flip and toast other side until golden (this does not take long at all)

slice the tomatoes

pour both vinegars and a splash of olive oil into a shallow dish and marinade the tomato slices for as long as you like.

when you’re read to eat, layer tomato slices and basil on each slice of toast and spoon some vinegar mixture over each. season with salt and pepper.

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