Yummy Summer Food to enjoy with family and friends

Repeat post. Enjoy, and share your favorites!

A couple of days ago our friend Menagerie said this:

We need a summer recipe post. I’m craving summer salads with chopped vegetables. Maybe fruit dishes as well. We get so many delicious fresh fruits and vegetables and I’m looking for new ides on how to fix them.

Maybe that could be one of your summer posts, maybe even combine it with stories. I don’t have lots of memories from my childhood, but I do remember cookouts, family reunions, a few church events, trips to my friend’s grandmother’s house for a big family lunch after church, then all the kids played outside for hours. Churning ice cream. Watermelons that my dad kept cold in his big walk in freezers at the farmers market. Selling peaches on a stall at the market when I was about ten or twelve. The excitement of the first days when the truck farmers would show up with their pickup beds full of corn, panel trucks loaded with all kinds of homegrown vegetables.

The farmers and their sons would often stay in their trucks until they sold all their produce, occasionally even their wives and a small child or two would stay too.

I guess summer will always take me back to the farmers market I grew up on.

Sorry, I got off on a trip back in time.

I have a lot of memories about food too – especially family gatherings.

  • Reunions at the farm, at my Aunt Flossie’s house and at our house one year too. Flossie’s baked beans, my mother’s potato salad, lots of corn on the cob (roasted or boiled), and fried chicken and ham.
  • Hamburger cookouts, with all the trimmings.
  • Trips to the state park to swim, cooking breakfast and lunch over a charcoal or wood fire.
  • Road trips with a picnic along the way, usually at one of the “Dodge Parks”.

  • Sunday dinner at the farm. Fried chicken, and whatever vegetables were ready in the garden. New peas and potatoes, cucumbers and onions sliced in vinegar, tomatoes, corn on the cob, green beans, pickled beets, cucumber pickles, homemade chili sauce.
  • Lovely summer desserts, usually involving fruit. Strawberry shortcake, angel food cake stuffed with strawberries and whipped cream, cherry pie, rhubarb pie, peach cobbler, apple crisp! My mother’s applesauce cake, made with home canned applesauce, raisins and nuts, and topped with her “penuche” (brown sugar) frosting.  And just plain fruit – watermelon and cantaloupe, all kinds of berries, cherries, peaches and plums.

Now I’m hungry.

What do you remember? What are your favorite summer recipes, especially those with the bounty of the season – lots of lovely veggies and fruit?


This entry was posted in baking, cooking, Family, Nostalgia, Recipes, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Yummy Summer Food to enjoy with family and friends

  1. auscitizenmom says:

    Watermelon, fruit salads, potato salad, deviled eggs, green jello/cottage cheese/ pineapple salad, angel food cake/vanilla ice cream between layers, hot dogs, hamburgers, vegies and dip, and also fried chicken. I am pretty sure there was ham in there somewhere, too. I just never was all that crazy about ham.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Lucille says:

    Potluck luncheons and evening suppers were staples of my childhood summers, which usually revolved around church. The women would bring their favorite dishes–fried chicken, potato salad, macaroni salad, beans of varying kinds, meat ball spaghetti, cornbread muffins, cubed fruits and watermelon slices. Mom usually brought her Spanish rice with hamburger which somehow always tasted good hot or cooled off, and deviled eggs (whatever she did to them, they still are the best I’ve ever tasted).

    The men would bring hot dogs and buns for the kids with just plain old mustard or catsup and a pickle relish. Us kids would gather around and watch the guys grill the dogs and slap them in the buns. It was up to us to put whatever else we wanted on them. I don’t remember ever having green salads at these gatherings but tuna or bean salads were plentiful. And sheet cakes as dessert was de rigueur.

    If the food fests were held indoors in the social hall, one of the pianists would entertain us. As I recall, our church pianists were always women.

    Rural church potlucks likely still go on, but I’ve not been to one for 50 years. I remember them fondly.

    Liked by 2 people

    • stella says:

      In our church (founded by the local German community), we had an ice cream social in the summer, and a fish fry which became a hugely popular affair, drawing customers from the local General Motors Technical Center in Warren MI.

      The event I remember best is the fall harvest dinner. The ladies made huge crocks of homemade sauerkraut and other delicious dishes.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Lucille says:

        Your mentioning German sauerkraut reminds me that a German purple cabbage dish with some sort of fruit, maybe apple or pineapple, was a good dish to serve hot or cold at picnics or potlucks. I doubt I’ve seen that dish since I was a teenager. And, yes, homemade ice cream was a real treat but someone had to be ambitious in order to make enough to go around.

        And I suspect that the potlucks were held during the week so that folks would be encouraged to attend Bible Study every Wednesday evening. Feed the soul and the body.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. czarina33 says:

    Being from Miami, I was raised with a few months of hot summer, and fall, winter and spring like up-north summer. Thus, ice cream, lemon ice box pie, key lime pie, strawberry shortcake, barbecue, fried chicken and potato salad were all year.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Menagerie says:

    My current favorite summer dish is tomato pie. I like Paula Deen’s recipe, although I swap out some of the cheddar for Gouda. I posted a link to a tomato corn pie a few weeks ago. That’s up next!

    Anyone else have an air fryer you use? I was just getting the hang of it before my accident. It seems to be a good way to cook vegetables, and I’m looking for ideas on that.

    Reading this post took me back again to my childhood. You never knew for sure exactly which summer weekend the truck farmers would start pouring in with their booty. It was an exciting and chaotic weekend as they vied for the best spots and set out their vegetables. It is such a vivid memory for me that I can still remember the smells of the vegetables and dust, close my eyes and hear the done of bees that hovered over the peaches down on the far end stalls.

    Back then shrew housewives came out to buy trunk loads of vegetables to go home and can or freeze at great prices, feeding their family well and cheaply. That market is gone now, and the only one in Chattanooga is kind of an artisan yuppie foodie deal where you pay ten times the grocery price for anything. Good and fresh yes, but simply outrageous prices.

    Liked by 1 person

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