a bit of this, a bit of that

Let's Take this Outside

I know the weather where some of you are is scorching
and this might not be a great idea,
for others this is just the thing to do right now.
Welcome, pull out a chair and make yourself comfortable.

How about a little something to wet your palette!

Cherry Mojitos
Add 250g sugar to 300ml water and bring to the boil in a small saucepan, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely. Then put 300ml lime juice (about 9 limes) into a non-reactive bowl and add 1.35kg cherries (pitted and halved). Stir in the syrup and refrigerate for an hour (no more than overnight). Stir 530ml vodka (black cherry or plain) into the cherry mixture. To serve, fill glasses with ice and spoon in the cherry vodka and top with sparkling water. Serve immediately.

Prosecco Sangria
Makes about 2 quarts
1 peach
1 nectarine
3 apricots
5 ounces peach brandy
1 bottle (750 mL) chilled Prosecco, (Italian sparkling wine)
1 cup peach nectar
Superfine sugar (optional)
DirectionsIn a pitcher, combine peach, nectarine, and apricots, all pitted and cut into wedges. Stir in peach brandy; let sit at least 1 hour. Stir in Prosecco and peach nectar. Add superfine sugar, if desired. Serve chilled.

Lime Ginger Coolers (non-alcoholic)
Makes 6
· Small ice cubes
· 12 dashes bitters
· About 1 cup sweetened concentrated lime juice (preferably Rose's)
· 24 ounces (3 cups) seltzer
· 6 slices peeled fresh ginger
DirectionsFill six 8-ounce glasses with ice. Add 2 dashes bitters and 2 to 3 tablespoons lime juice to each glass. Top with about 1/2 cup seltzer; stir. Add ginger, and serve.

Chilled Avocado Soup
Serves 4
· 3 ripe avocados
· 2 cups low-fat buttermilk
· 1/3 cup walnut halves
· 1/3 cup fresh dill sprigs, plus more for garnish (optional)
· 1/3 cup diced red onion, or half a small onion
· 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
· 1 teaspoon coarse salt

1. Halve and pit two avocados. With a spoon, scoop out flesh and transfer to a blender. Add buttermilk, walnuts, dill, red onion, vinegar, salt, and 1 cup water and puree until smooth. Cover the blender and refrigerate until the soup is well chilled, at least one hour. Halve and pit remaining avocado. Cut into four sections lengthwise, and then cut crosswise into 1/2-inch chunks. Divide soup among four bowls and garnish each with diced avocado and dill, if desired.

Comfy now, Looking for a little more

Spice-Rubbed Grilled Salmon
Serves 8
· 1 tablespoon each whole coriander, cumin, dill, and yellow-mustard seeds
· 2 tablespoons whole fennel seeds
· 1 tablespoon salt
· 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
· 2 tablespoons sugar
· 1 whole four-pound side of salmon, skin on, small bones and excess fat removed
· Olive oil
· Spicy Cucumber Salsa

1. Combine all seeds in a skillet over medium heat; toast, shaking pan, until aromatic, 4 to 6 minutes. Grind seeds coarsely in a spice grinder or with a mortar and pestle. Transfer to a bowl; add salt, pepper, and sugar.
2. Rub spice mixture into flesh side of salmon. Let stand 30 minutes; if not grilling right away, refrigerate, wrapped in plastic, for up to 2 days. Let salmon come to room temperature before grilling. Heat grill to hot; coals should be glowing red, and rack should be very hot. Brush both sides of salmon and hot rack with oil. Grill salmon (if using a gas grill, close lid while cooking), flesh side down, until firm and slightly charred, 4 to 8 minutes. Carefully turn salmon using 2 large spatulas. Cook 4 to 6 minutes more, or until mostly opaque but slightly translucent and cooked through. Serve with cucumber salsa.

Grilled New England Seafood Bake
Serves 4
· 2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
· 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill, plus more for garnish
· 1 small garlic clove, minced
· Coarse salt and ground pepper
· 8 ounces red new potatoes, scrubbed and thinly sliced
· 1 pound skinless cod fillet, cut into four equal pieces
· 8 ounces frozen uncooked medium shrimp (peeled and deveined), thawed
· 2 ears corn, quartered
· 1 lemon, thinly sliced
· 2 hard rolls, halved

1. Heat grill to medium. In a small bowl, combine butter, dill, and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
2. Fold four 14-inch squares of heavy-duty aluminum foil in half, forming 4 rectangles. Assemble packets: On one half of each of four folded pieces of heavy-duty foil, dividing ingredients evenly, arrange potatoes in a single layer; top with cod, then shrimp. Place 2 pieces of corn on the side. Season with salt and pepper. Add a dollop of the butter mixtures and two lemon slices. Fold foil over ingredients, and crimp edges tightly to seal.
3. Place packets on grill, with potato layer on the bottom. Cook, rotating (but not flipping) packets occasionally, until fish is just cooked through and potatoes are tender, 12 to 14 minutes. Remove from grill. Slit packets open, and transfer contents to serving bowls. Garnish with dill sprigs; serve with rolls.

BBQ steak with Asparagus and Roasted Potatoes

A little something for dessert

Cherry Ice
Serves 4
· 1/2 cup dry white wine
· 1/3 cup honey
· 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
· 2 cups pitted cherries, fresh or frozen, plus whole ones for garnish
1. In a medium bowl, whisk together wine, honey, and lemon juice until combined. Set aside.
2. Place cherries in a food processor; pulse until finely chopped. Transfer to bowl with liquid mixture; stir until combined. Pour into a shallow metal pan and place in freezer. Stir with a fork every 10 minutes until mixture is slushy and partially solidified, about 35 minutes. Spoon into serving cups; garnish with whole cherries.

Please take these Strawberry-Chocolate

Ice-cream cookies to the garden and enjoy the conversation.

I hope you enjoyed your visit, please come again real soon!!

Hugs, Nerina :)


  1. It's 7:16 in the morning and it's already hot outside. Been in the 100's plus all week. I finally got around to vacuuming the stairs and family room. I thought I better seeing how my husband asked me if I wanted him to take the vacuum downstairs, LOL. And after doing that I sure could use a tall glass of something cool to drink right about now!

    Beautiful pictures and great receipes! Thank you for posting them! I'll share them with the cook in our household which is NOT me!!

    Have a super day!


  2. Wow! You included some great recipes. Now if I only enjoyed cooking. My favorites are for the alcoholic drinks. What does this say about me?

  3. Nerina, you need to hook up with Foodie Friday. Find the info on my sidebar. This is a wonderful food post. I am now determined to try that chilled soup and that salmon! OH, how I love salmon!


    Sheila :-)

  4. Nerina, What a beautiful post. It is already in the 100s here in Phoenix this morning at 7. Last night it was 120 degrees on the porch. I have been cooking. It wouldn't matter what I was serving right now, if it is on the patio, nobody is coming. I love your post, the setting is absolutely beautiful. You really outdid yourself. Gorgeous. Just gorgeous. I also loved the little lanterns. Please stop by and say hi. Country Hugs, Sherry

  5. Ahhhhh! I want to come for a visit! That was so inspiring and left me feeling relaxed all at the same time! I will be copying Thank you for stopping by my blog and leaving such a sweet comment. I have certianly enjoyed my visit here and will be back! :)

  6. Hot, hazy, and humid in Jersey ... one of those cherry mojitos would work about now, it's after 12:00pm so I guess that's acceptable, huh?

    Thanks for sharing such a terrific post, Nerina ... I will definitely try ALL the drink recipes!! ; )

    Have a great weekend,

  7. Cherry Mojito's sound yummy , I will have to try that .

  8. Nerina thanks for stopping by and the comments. I just wanted you to know that I did have a popsicle. Actually I had (2). Cherry ofcourse. What else would you eat? I don't know why they put grape and orange in the box. We only eat the cherry ones. I don't know anyone that likes them so they end up wasted. Have a wonderful party with all the fixings, as you are set to go. Take pics as always. We have to take pics first and then eat. Country Hugs, Shery

  9. YUMMY! I love all of that! Have a great weekend sweetie!

  10. Oh yes please, I'll have one of everything! That first picture looks so comfortable, I could park myself there for a while.

    Great post!xxoo


I really appreciate you taking the time to leave me a message. Your comments and emails truly make my day fantastic, thanks for stopping by, see you again soon:)


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