Long summer evenings call for meals that are light and healthy. No one wants to spend long periods in the kitchen when there are beautiful sunsets and fun activities to be enjoyed out of doors. Here are three suggestions for meals that fulfill those needs. They will satisfy and impress families and guests without any of the guilt. Each meal is designed to be creative, sophisticated and filled with the healthy ingredients available during the summertime. Enjoy making summertime memories while still enjoying healthy, yet elegant, dinner meals.
Meal Idea One: Mediterranean Tuna Panini and Mocha Cream Shake
The Mediterranean Tuna Panini is an upscale version of a tuna sandwich. Canned tuna is imbued with the flavors of the Mauritanian by adding salty capers and olives. Briny Feta cheese, lemon juice and tender artichoke hearts add to the flavor profile. Grilled on whole wheat bread in a panini press or on the stove, this sandwich is flavorful and filling.
For dessert, consider having a Mocha Cream Shake. Blended with low-fat frozen yogurt, strong brewed coffee and dark chocolate, it is a grown up version of a favorite treat. Perfect for cooling off on hot summer evenings.
Meal Idea Two: Poached Salmon with Creamy Piccata Sauce and Spiced Zinfandel Granita with Grapes and Cream
Poached salmon makes a beautiful summertime meal option. Dress the salmon up with a creamy sauce of white wine, capers and fresh dill. A ¼ cup of reduced-fat sour added after reducing makes the sauce creamy and luxurious. Garnish will sprigs of fresh dill. Complete the entrée with steamed, seasonal vegetables.
Finish the meal with a Spiced Zinfandel Granita with Grapes and Cream for dessert. This dessert uses a favorite red wine. Combined with sugar, water, orange juice, cinnamon sticks and orange peel, the resulting frozen granita makes a refreshing end to a summer meal. Garnish the granita with grape halves and whipped cream. The beautiful red color and coolness of the granite will be appreciated by all.
Meal Idea Three: Shrimp with Broccoli and Almond-Tangerine Panna Cotta
East meets West in this version of a favorite take-out meal. The traditionally Asian dish of shrimp and broccoli is given an Italian viewpoint with the addition of basil, lemon juice and garlic. Shrimp is sautéed with garlic and crushed red pepper. Then the broccoli is cooked until crisp tender. The delicate sauce is created with clam juice, basil and is seasoned with lemon and pepper. Serve with rice, if desired, and garnish with lemon wedges.
Creamy almond panna cotta is a low calorie summertime indulgence. This dessert is elevated by the addition of tangerines and a garnish of dried tart cherries. Created with fat-free milk and Greek yogurt, the panna cotta is a slightly sweet, light tasting option to heavy traditional summertime desserts. A sauce is made from pomegranate juice. Tangerines and dried tart cherries are added at the end. Spooned over the panna cotta, it becomes a beautiful mix of colors and textures. The smooth, velvety dessert makes an elegant end to a summertime meal.
Summertime is about long, sultry evenings with great food, friends and family. Enjoying the backyard with friends should be the focus, not long evenings around a hot stove creating meals that are heavy and don’t meet everyone’s healthy goals. These meals are suggestions to create healthy dinners quickly that are light and low in calories. During swimsuit season, these meals provide nutritious options that won’t impact the waistline. Elegant in summertime colors, they will please even the most discriminating diner.
This article is sponsored by ShopRite of Yardley in Oxford Oaks Shopping Center, the state-of-the-art grocery store that is here to fulfill all of your holiday shopping needs. Three hundred well prepared associates are ready to serve you as you shop aisles filled with the freshest varieties of produce, meat and seafood. In addition to offering the convenience of online shopping options, the 57,000-square-foot ShopRite of Yardley was designed with convenience in mind, even offering on-site childcare for children ages 3 to 8 for up to 90 minutes!
Have More Questions About Healthy Eating?
The ShopRite of Yardley offers free nutrition services year-round courtesy of their in-store registered dietitian. Customers can make an appointment for a complimentary nutrition consultation by stopping by the office of Alex Buccino, RD, LDN, the Retail Dietitian of ShopRite of Yardley or by phone at (215) 595-0078 ext. 3001, or email at [email protected]. ShopRite also offers culinary workshop cooking classes which feature delicious, in season, healthy recipes that customers can sample and recreate at home.