Summer Lunch

A few days ago, my mom made me a proposition.  Knowing that I’m trying to learn how to cook, she told me that she had invited one of her friends over for lunch today and that she would pay me to come up with a menu and cook for them!  I spent the past couple of days brainstorming, going through my bookmarked blog recipes, and googling.

The Menu:
Appetizer: Tortilla Chips with Kiwi Mango Salsa via How Sweet It Is

Avocado, orange bell pepper, mango, lime, kiwis, and cilantro + unpictured red onion

Check out Jessica’s original post for exact measurements and the easiest directions ever.

Beautiful and delicious.  I tried multiple scoops with a spoon straight-up, but classified it for my mom and her friend by serving it with tortilla chips.  They raved and asked me to jar it.

Entree: Mushroom and Goat Cheese Frittata via Opera Girl Cooks

Goat cheese, baby bellas, eggs, pepper, salt, EVOO

The original recipe and directions can be found here, but I’m also including it below with my modifications.

  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 small (1″ diameter) leek, washed and in 1/2″ slices – I didn’t include the leek
  • 6 crimini mushrooms (about 2.5 ounces), in 8″ slices – 2c chopped baby bellas
  • 1/8 tsp. salt
  • 3 large eggs – I used 6
  • 3 Tbsp. (about 1.5 ounces) goat cheese – 6 tbsp
  • 1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. (or less) olive oil (again)

So, so good!  I couldn’t believe I was so successful in making my first frittata!  It didn’t stick or burn at all 🙂  It was super easy too.

Side: Green Bean and Pita Salad via In Praise of Leftovers

Green beans, radishes, red onion, pita, goat cheese, sea salt, oregano, sesame seeds

Again, the original recipe can be found here, but since I doubled it, my modifications are listed below.

  • 4.5c green beans (about 2/3 lb.)
  • 2/3c radishes
  • 1/8c red onion
  • 2 pocketless pitas
  • salt
  • oregano
  • sesame seeds

I left out the mint and goat cheese from the original recipe, since I was using it in the frittata.  I wish I had taken a picture of the pita frying in the wok with the oregano and sesame seeds – it was so pretty!

Sea salt, garlic clove, EVOO, lemon

Dressing ingredients:

  • ~2 tbsp EVOO
  • 1 minced garlic clove
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • a few grinds of sea salt

I thought I added too much lemon for the dressing, but the two lovely ladies lunching thought it was perfect for the hot and humid day!  Doesn’t it just look so summery and refreshing?  So great and something I would never have put together on my own – crunchy pita, toasty sesame seeds, and crispy vegetables.

DessertButter Bean Cookies via Happy Herbivore

I actually made these last night, when I was with Whole Foods hot bar Indian food baby after a date with a friend from high school!  So the pictures are not the greatest – kitchen lighting at 10:30 pm doesn’t really beautify things – even if they ARE chocolate chip cookies!

I don’t have a food processor (ours broke) so I just used our trusty Osterizer blender that I’m pretty sure my mom has had since she lived in California .. in the 70s.  Take that, VitaMix.  Oh, hey, did you know that if you forget to buy applesauce at the store, you can peel and chop an apple, add some water, and you’ve got your own?

Now you do.

Original recipe and directions here.  My modifications based on what I had:

  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour (probably why they didn’t spread at all)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon (optional)
  • a dash of ground cardamon (optional)
  • ½ cup canned white beans, liquids reserved (I used cannellini)
  • ½ cup raw sugar (regular was all we had)
  • ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup vegan chocolate chips(I used 365 Mini Dark Chocolate Chunks)
  • a dash of salt

I thought they turned out really well!  You can definitely tell they’re not a traditional cookie, but not in a bad way.  I tried them last night and was really please, but my mom said she thought they were a little dry today – next time I’ll use the right flour, raw sugar (or stevia for baking?), and more applesauce – maybe a banana instead?  Either way, I highly suggest making these to satisfy a cookie craving!  Oatmeal chocolate chip is my favorite cookie, hands down, and I not only didn’t feel guilty, but actually GOOD about eating these!

My first “catering” experience was really successful!  My mom and her friend loved the food and I actually didn’t burn anything … the food or otherwise.

My night consisted of a buffalo “chicken” wrap, Sex & the City 2, a citrus kombucha, and :South Park.”  Good night!

  1. I’m glad your frittata turned out so well! Thanks for linking me on your blog =)

  2. Tes said:

    What a wonderful ways of welcome summer. I love these recipes. They are so colorful and vibrant. Thanks for sharing.

  3. So glad you liked the salsa! I am itching to make it again. I eat it straight up with a spoon, too. 😉

    • Brynne said:

      SO delicious – thanks so much for creating it :0)

  4. Kate said:

    that salsa looks amazing! super bright and colorful and summery. yum!

    i have been meaning to try bean infused baked goods. i’ve always been a bit nervous but perhaps i shall give it a whirl!

    • Brynne said:

      Let me know what you end up with – I really want to try black bean brownies!

  5. Maya said:

    Hmm, this looks like a great summer menu! I love green beans, warm as veggies and cold in salads. I guess I’ll have to try this salad too. Also thanks for the links to the other food blogs.
    Happy cooking,

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