For those of you who follow this blog regularly, you know that we often recommend starting a home backyard garden as an easy sustainable practice that will help you reduce your carbon footprint and eat healthier. Now that it’s officially Summer, those of you who decided to take the steps toward a more sustainable lifestyle by growing your own produce are probably beginning to see the benefits of your hard work!
When I went out to my garden this weekend, I had a bountiful harvest waiting…the tomatoes, zucchini, cucumber, basil and cilantro were ripe for the picking! And the eggplant, chili peppers and garlic are just about ready too.
So, what can you do with all this? One of the biggest complaints I hear about starting a home garden or purchasing from your local CSA, is that the harvest is very random and people can’t figure out what to make with the produce.
In the spirit of cooperation, us gardening fans here at Sun Valley Solar are happy to help. Here are four of our favorite recipes from our team to your table:
1. Cucumber, Tomatoes & Basil Salad with Mozzarella and Balsamic Vinaigrette:
Ingredients from my garden: Cucumbers (2), Tomatoes (2), and Basil (1 sprig)
Purchased Ingredients: Mozzarella, balsamic vinaigrette
Simply chop up the fresh ingredients, and mozzarella and toss in a salad bowl, then drizzle with vinaigrette. If you are looking to turn this into a meal, you can also add some chicken, avocado or pasta to make it more filling!
2. Cucumber with Salt and Lemon:
Ingredients from my garden: Cucumber (1), lemon juice
Purchased ingredients: salt
Well, it is pool season, and with the triple digit temps you might be trying to maintain that summer physique. One of my favorite replacement for chips are sliced cucumbers sprinkled with fresh lemon juice and salt. Especially on a hot day, this is a refreshing snack.
3. Fresh Salsa:
Ingredients from my garden: Tomatoes (5), jalapenos (2) – seeds removed), cilantro (1 handful), garlic (2 cloves)
Purchased ingredients: onion (1), lime (2), salt & pepper (to taste), cumin (1tsp.), sugar (1 tsp.)
Add Tomatoes, jalapenos, cilantro, garlic, and onion (roughly chopped) to your food processor. Then as dry ingredients and lime juice. Them simply process until it reaches the desired consistency. This should leave you with an awesome salsa!
4. Grilled Zucchini:
Ingredients from the garden: zucchini (1-2)
Purchased ingredients: Olive oil, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper.
Simply slice your zucchini, and place on foil. Drizzle the slices with oil, and sprinkle with seasoning. Place on the grill for about 10 minutes. This makes for an awesome side to grilled chicken or steak, and you don’t even have to heat up the house by turning on the oven!
Sometimes I do find myself with an item that I am not sure what to do with. In cases like this, Google is your friend. A quick search will easily provide a couple of recipes to consider! Not only will you be eating healthier, you’ll also have accomplished making something completely from scratch that you may have never considered before—all from the seeds or plants you planted just a few months ago! Bon Appetite!
If you are interested in learning how solar can help you reduce your carbon footprint, and ensure a cleaner future for generations to come, we invite you to download our exclusive solar whitepaper. You can also request a custom solar quote from one of our solar experts today.